07 July, 2008

Restaurant Nijyumaru Japanese - The Best Jap Dining in JB

It has been more than 2 years since then that I came back to visit Restaurant Nijyumaru Japanese. Having rated them as a “Die Die Must Try!” dining place based on my old rating system, it was inevitable that I pay them a visit when I step into JB once again. To ascertain that my rating on them was still valid, I took the trouble to order somehow the similar dishes. The Kawahagi (RM8), or Grilled Fish Biscuit wasn’t cuttlefish as I once thought – it is actually dried Filefish, also known as Foolfish, Leatherjackets or Shingles. The grilling produced a nice smoky flavour that seeks to enhance the sweetness of the fish and the pairing of the Tobiko & Mayonnaise dip just hits the spot – an excellent appetiser dish that opens my palates.

Next up was the Sashimi Platter made up of Sake (RM23), or Salmon (they didn’t have Salmon Belly that evening), Uni (RM55), or Sea Urchin Gonads and 2 servings of Hotate (RM23 each), or Scallops. Serving wise, the salmon wasn’t as generous as I remembered, but quality wise they were fresh and served chilled. Special mention goes to the Hotate that were plump and firm and it’s flesh was so sweet that everyone on the dining table was showering praises about it.

The Kani Maki (RM14), or Soft Shell Crab Sushi wasn’t executed as ideally as I thought it should be – the Tobiko was sparsely coated and the sushi rice somehow doesn’t taste fresh - however I have to complement that the soft shell crab was well deep-fried and doesn’t come across as too oily from the oil it absorbed – unlike those that are poorly executed.

Another winner of the night belongs to Ebi Misoyaki (RM18), or Grilled Prawn with Miso Glaze. Announcing its entry with a tantalising aroma, the salty and buttery texture from the miso, or fermented soybean paste, goes awesomely well with the two juicy king prawns. In summary, the dish is everything delicious and absolutely heavenly.

The Beef Wine Steak (RM 20) is essentially pieces of beef cubes infused with red wine sauce and topped with fried garlic. The beef is cooked tendered and well inculcate with the sauce but I didn’t really take to the red wine sauce, as its sour taste was not to my liking. The serving for this dish was also barely adequate and in my opinion was the only dish not valued for money that evening.

To round off the night, we ordered the Ten Zaru Soba (RM15), or Chilled Buckwheat Soba Noodle served on a sieve-like bamboo tray called a Zaru, garnished with bits of Dried Nori Seaweed that comes with Mixed Tempura. The noodles were done al dente and the tempura was well coated and nicely fried. What I also like this dish was the accompanied of Quail Egg with the dipping sauce known as the Soba Tsuyu, which you do not find it in many Japanese restaurant. The coating of the egg on the noodles simply gives it an extra oomph and seeks to smoothen the texture of the noodles. My only nitpick was that the noodles should come colder and preferably served with small ice cubes underneath.

With an addition order of Iidako, or Baby Octopus, the total bill comes up to RM257.60, which roughly translates to $107 for 4 persons, or $26.75 per pax – absolutely worth it! And as quoted by one of my readers previously, Restaurant Nijyumaru Japanese is “The BEST Japanese Restaurant in Johor”, and I concur that.

To highlight how good the business was, we arrived at 6.10pm on a weekend (it opens at 6pm) and there were only 1 table left available – so do call for reservation or arrived early if you do not wish to wait – you have been warned.

Food: 4.5/5 (Hotate & Ebi Miso Yaki is worth this rating)
Service: 3.5/5 (Despite the many waitresses, everyone is really busy taking orders and serving food)
Ambience: 3.75/5 (Nice cosy place with private rooms, but too noisy if you are looking for somewhere romantic)
Price: 5/5 (It's a steal for such good food!)
Total: 16.75/20
24, Jalan Permas 10/5
Taman Permas Jaya,
81750 Masai, Johor Bahru
Tel: 07-388-9818

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red fir said...

I don't think it was the sushi rice that didn't do for the maki. It's probably due to the oil used to deep fry the soft shell carbs. Think they reused the oil too many times.

The correct way of eating cold soba is just plain chilled, not on a bed of ice. And there're many places in Singapore which serves zaru soba with uzura tamago.


His Food Blog said...

Hey ice,

It could be the case although the crabs itself doesn't leave one with an aftertaste of reused oil - cannot really pinpoint the cause till now.

I reckon its really my own preference - to having my soba really cold. Hmm, perhaps but places that I have tried Soba like Waraku and Tampopo doesn't from what I can remember.

Anonymous said...

I like soba cold, too. It's rare to get it that cold in the U.S., though!

His Food Blog said...

Hi Steph,

Yeah. Preference likewise.

Chances are when it is served chilled without the ice, it will somehow be lukewarm towards the end.

I like mine chilled throughout - so a bed of ice underneath the soba works for me!

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