Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Uptown

Yuki introduced us to Wakon, a non-halal Japanese restaurant Uptown that sells yakitori (skewered) and yakimono (grilled, pan-fried) deliciousness. Since then my life (and wallet) has not been the same.

Wakon is founded by a Hong Kong chef who cooks Japanese food in Malaysia. Sounds like a typical Malaysian business rojak story.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama

Start off with a salad, either the Salmon (RM15.90) or Crab Roe (RM11.90). All salads served with deep-roasted sesame dressing.

Did it just a curd to you how much you love tofu? A few options available, I’ve tried Inaka (RM12.90) and Age (RM13.90). I prefer the former as it’s lighter, less salty.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - salad, tofu, parmesan with truffle
Salad, Salad, Ika Tofu, Parmesan with Truffle

The highlight of Wakon? Black truffle! An acquired earthy taste, I didn’t like it until last year when my palate changed and I was susceptible to more foreign tastes.

On the Black Truffle menu: Tamago (RM19.90 for 4 slices), runny egg (RM9.90), Parmesan (RM14.90), Udon (RM39.90) and Mushrooms (RM12.90). If you have to choose, my recommendation is the egg and mushrooms, both reliable go-tos for that gourmet flavour.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - truffle sauce mushroom
Truffle Sauce with Mushrooms is love at first bite

Not just any pork belly, Wakon’s Pork Belly (RM5.90) is grilled to perfection; wonderfully fragrant and absolutely decadent. This and the truffle mushroom fight for the No. 1 spot of my Wakon favourites.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - BBQ pork belly
Currently, the best grilled pork belly in my books

Another flavourful recommendation – Chicken Skin and Naga Negi (RM7.90), that is if you enjoy fat-permeated leeks.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - chicken skin and naga negi
Chicken Skin and Naga Negi. On a diet? What?

Bacon & Tomato (RM6.90), a winning classic combination. Be careful of this one – let it cool down for a bit, you don’t want the hot cherry tomatoes erupt like a volcano in your mouth.

Source: Someone who ate it while it was hot.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - bacon and tomato
You say bacon, I say tomato. Do I have to keep writing these cheesy accompanying lines?

Something different: Grilled Chicken Wings stuffed with Fish Roe or Gyoza (dumplings) (RM9.90).

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - chicken wings with fish roe and gyoza
It’s not like people really read every line these days.

I never miss an opportunity for Grilled Corn (RM5.90). Sweet, buttery, enjoyable.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - corn
Insert corny line about a photo of corn. My god, we are really coming down to this.

Not every item is a hit. We didn’t like the chicken skin yakitori – not crispy enough thus have that soggy fat aftertaste – and onigiri (rice ball).

But the good it seems, overcome the bad. Shishamo (RM6.90), Roasted Sanma wth Leeks (RM14.90), Teriyaki Gindara (RM24.90) and BBQ Squid (RM16.90) were up to par.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant, Damansara Utama - shishamo, sanma, cod, squid
This, the end of filler lines. I have never won a photo captioning contest.

Other recommendations not in pictures: pork neck and own-made udon in tonkotsu (pork bone) broth.

Notes:

  1. Not all items are always available. In my few ad hoc visits, I was never successful in ordering the Tamago with Black Truffle. I had to pre-order for takeaway one time, that was how I tasted it.
  2. Chilled sake is better than warm. Their sake is decent, prices reasonable.
  3. Do NOT come here during peak hours on an empty stomach, especially if there are many customers already. They have a small operation that does things the old-fashioned slow way, so orders may take a while to arrive.
  4. Wakon is still running a promotion where certain items from 9.30pm onwards see a 20% – 50% discount. Go for it.
  5. They have super odd days off. It’s something like 2 or 3 days off every month, some time in the mid-week. You can only know if you see the sign at their door, or call to find out.

Wakon Japanese Restaurant
75G, Jalan SS 21/1A
Damansara Utama (Uptown)
47400 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: +603-7733 5996
Facebook: Wakon.Japanese

Opens: 12-3pm and 6-11+ pm. Off days? See Note #5 above.

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