The concept of Izakaya or Japanese gastro pub, is relatively new in Malaysia – it is basically a pub with a proper bar and full kitchen.
Cravings for a few beers or sake? No problem. Hungry for a full on Japanese meal? They’ve got that covered too.
One such newcomer to the restaurant scene is Robataya Izakaya in Publika, Kuala Lumpur.
They have a pretty extensive menu consisting of raw fish, ramen, rice dishes, tempura, salads, grilled foods, and more.
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Robataya Izakaya at Publika is our dinner spot tonight, we're having boat loads of different items from the menu, from sashimi, sushi, to salad, teppan, and kushyaki at this review session. Momo tama and their salmon oyako sarada are definite must orders. #kyeats #izakaya #foodreview #sushi #sashimi #publika #yakitori
Okan Sashimi (RM70) is made up of a Sashimi platter with five different fresh seafood carefully arranged on ice. There is salmon, salmon belly, sweet shrimp, tuna, and butterfish.
While it may not be the super premium quality Sashimi some are used to, the portions are generous and it is actually quite a treat for the price one pays.
For those who like their rolls, the Robataya Teppan Roll (RM28) has salmon inside, a lashing of mayo, and grilled bacon perched on top. The taste is rather unique, and of course, anything tastes better with a bit of bacon accompanying it.
The Una Chizu Roll (RM25) is a slightly more creative interpretation of the usual Unagi roll as theirs come with cheese. The end product is pretty good to be honest.
The Salmon Oyaka Sarada (RM26) however, is the hands down favourite on the menu. Laden with plenty of crispy salmon skin, this dish also contains generous portions of raw salmon and cherry tomatoes hiding amongst the mustard leaves. The sesame dressing brings the salad together in a flavoursome and refreshing way.
This spot also has a fascinating assortment of meat on skewers – Kushiyaki Teba (chicken wings on skewers, RM6), Buta (pork belly RM6), Uzura Bacon (quail eggs bacon, RM6), Banana Bacon (RM6), Tomato Gyumaki (tomato wrapped with beef, RM7), Tsukune (chicken meatballs, RM5), Momo Tama (chicken thighs wrapped with egg, RM6), and Negima (chicken with leeks, RM5).
The most tasty and therefore memorable among these is the Momo Tama because the egg is cooked to a rather soft consistency and works excellently with the chicken thigh.
If you enjoy a hearty barbecue, there’s only one way to improve the experience – by having it indoors with air conditioning.
The San Ten Zeppin Sumiyaki (RM55) is gorgeous – a combination of pork belly, bacon, and Australian beef, all thinly sliced for quick cooking.
The Teppan Ika Geso (cuttle fish, RM15), Spare Pork Ribs Teriyaki (RM33), and Akaebi Olive (RM 42) are another must-have.
The cuttlefish makes for a very good side dish when drinking beer, and the olive shrimp is simply outstanding, mostly because the olive gives it a little sweetness that complements the spicy deep-fried shrimp rather nicely.
So do pop by and give this gastropub a try the next time you’re in the vicinity of Publika.
Solaris Dutamas, Kuala Lumpur
GPS: 3.170961, 101.665721
Tel: 03-6211 2785
This article first appeared in kyspeaks.com