Japanese cuisine is among the most beloved in Malaysia. With sushi bars, robatayaki specialists, izakayas, and more blossoming across the country, Malaysians have a wealth of choices at their fingertips; it’s more than easy to fix your Japanese cravings here.

From sophisticated omakase dining and modern kaiseki to fiery binchotan grills and creative sushi and sashimi, these restaurants are deserving top spot for the season. Here’s our Top 10.

1. Asumo

Asumo offers a modern, Tokyo-style rendition of charcoal-grilled Japanese Wagyu, importing whole Wagyu cattle from the Miyazaki and Tokushima prefectures in Japan. Try the Japanese Wagyu Yakiniku Omakase, a selection of the day’s best cuts presented in a wooden boat, cooked at the table, and served with the restaurant’s signature sauces and salts. A selection of Japanese beers, whiskies, and sakes complements the dishes and non-alcoholic beverages.

Address: No. 49 & 51, Jalan SS 15/5a, Ss 15, 47500 Subang Jaya.

2. Binchotan JB

Visit Binchotan JB for a decadent dining experience from start to finish. Impeccable ingredients are showcased throughout the meal through dishes such as the Foie Gras Pastella, Amadai Crispy Scales, and Sliced Beef Sukiyaki. Service is discrete yet attentive.

Address: 15, Jalan Kuning 2, Taman Pelangi, 80400 Johor Bahru.

3. Chipta 11a

Chipta 11a takes Japanese fusion to the next level with an unconventional, adventurous menu. The team’s expert knowledge of Japanese cuisine combined with respect for local ingredients results in an inspiring, creative experience. Unexpected combinations of unique ingredients result in a culinary adventure upon every visit, and since the menu is based around seasonal ingredients, dishes change regularly, giving regular reasons to revisit.

Address: 11a, Jalan 20/16, Sea Park, 46300 Petaling Jaya. 

4. Gekko Dining

With a detail-oriented chef and a team that appreciates quality, Gekko Dining serves excellent and consistent dishes, be it Japanese-inspired small plates or an omakase experience. Service is personal and genuine, and the restaurant can adapt to dietary needs.

Address: 120A, Jalan Kasah, Medan Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur. 

5. Hoshi

Hoshi combines traditional Japanese ingredients with modern techniques. Signature dishes, which include the scallop with foie gras torchon and the amadai, are executed well. The service and ambience are also excellent.

Address: One&Only Desaru Coast, Persiaran Damai, Desaru Coast, Bandar Penawar, 81930 Johor Darul Ta’zim. 

6. Japas By Jeff Ramsey

Playful and fun, Japas Kuala Lumpur stays true to its name, which is a combination of the words Japanese and tapas. The restaurant has a great selection of sharing plates overlooking a stunning view. Begin with the Smoked Ikura Tartelette before moving on to larger plates—the Grilled Pulpo and Truffle Tatsuta Chicken are flavourful and enjoyable.

Address: 11th Floor, WORK@Clearwater Changkat Semantan, Damansara Heights 50450 Kuala Lumpur. 

7. Kamii Omakase Eco Palladium

An elegant, intimate sushi counter awaits at Kamii Sushi Omakase Eco Palladium. With its delicate dishes, no expense is spared in creating an outstanding experience in every aspect, from the menu to the crockery used.

Address: 02-17, Block A, Pusat Perdagangan Ekoflora, Jln Ekoflora 7/3, Taman Ekoflora, 81100 Johor Bahru.

8. Kazu KL

Kazu KL’s move from Jalan Batai to a bigger, more distinctly architectural space has resulted in the restaurant stretching its wings and offering two dining experiences—chef Norikazu Shibata’s much sought-after sushi omakase and kappo dining by chef Ricky Kamiishi. As expected of such a specialised dining experience, service is just as attentive and focused as the chefs behind the counter, remaining unobtrusive, well-judged, and discrete when necessary. A drink at the adjoining Bā by 61M, stocked with a wealth of international whiskies, is a must.

Address: Pavilion At The Five Lot 54303 & 54304, Jalan Gelenggang, Bukit Damansara, 50490 Kuala Lumpur.

9. Kikyo

Kikyo, a fiery entrant to the local dining landscape, is Malaysia’s first premium warayaki (straw-fire cooking) dining experience. The restaurant also prides itself on its expertise in other traditional Japanese techniques, resulting in artful and authentic dishes. Signatures include the Miyabi A5 Wagyu Rump, the Sautéed Lobster Tail in White Vinegar Sauce, and the Aged A5 Wagyu Brioche.

Address: Lot G-3, The Troika, 19, Persiaran KLCC, Kuala Lumpur, 50490 Kuala Lumpur.

10. Kintsugi

For a modern kaiseki dining experience not typically found in other restaurants, visit Kintsugi. This restaurant serves unique and well-executed food in a beautiful environment. The seasonal menus offer an engaging experience that does not break the bank and are best paired with the selection of premium sake available.

Address: 3F, The Table, Isetan, The Gardens Mall, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Mid Valley City, 59200 Kuala Lumpur

Read more at https://www.tatlerasia.com/dining/food/tatler-dining-guide-2024-best-japanese-restaurants-malaysia 

Article and photographs courtesy of Tatler Malaysia.