Thursday, April 14, 2011

Penang Redux 10

For some Penang is synonymous with hawker food. But I have always felt that their Japanese fair would be good as well. There is a very large Japanese community there. I would assume (and rather rightly) that there would be some really excellent Japanese food there.

I found this place from surfing from the Internet. It looks like a garden from the front, since it is littered with greenery.

It is a pretty basic type of interior with tonnes of little dried flowers or herbs hanging from the rafters.

Beef tataki was first on the list. The beef is semi raw, seared around the edges and oh, so good. This was one serious pile of meat and veggies. This was a set dinner that comes with rice, soup and an appetiser.
Next on the menu is fried mushrooms. There were I think three different types of mushrooms here. I cannot finish waxing poetic about this. It was perfectly fried over what I would assume to be charcoal. There is a deep taste of charcoal permeating the mushrooms that made this dish unforgettable.

Okonomiyaki. I have always disliked this dish. there was always something off about it when I tasted it elsewhere. I guess it's the overwhelming floury, starchy texture. This was a total breath of fresh air for me. The sauce, the mayo, the batter, everything was the perfect mix.

Hamburg steak is a must when I can find it in the menu. Two big patties of beef. It had that strong peppery taste that I love along with the heavy aroma of spices. 

The Colleague tried the mushroom chawanmushi. This was a slight let down as we felt the egg might have been steamed too long. While the taste was excellent but the texture wasn't as smooth as we were used to.

Yakisoba. The taste of the noodle was on the strong side, reminiscent of yellow noodles. It is filled with large prawns and yummy to the tummy.

Seafood teppanyaki. The smell this gorgeous dish emitted on our way to our table is indescribable. The sauce they used was very different from the normal restaurants I have tried.

Soft shell crab maki. The last time I tasted such a good sushi was at Red in Damansara Heights almost eight years ago. I am happy to say that I finally found it again. The rice is holds the sushi together but disintegrates on the tongue. The crab is crispy and fresh.
Unagi maki rounded up the last of the savouries. I am a person that hates unagi for their extreme fishy taste. This had none, absolutely none. I always depended on the sauce for the unagi to cover some of the taste. This unagi was practically dry of sauce. It was sweet since it was grilled in it but this was the most perfect unagi my taste buds had the privilege of appreciating.
Rare cheese cake. I didn't like this too much as I felt it was too milky and too cheesy.

Home made ice cream. We chose two flavours green tea and black sesame. Macha and goma. When they said home made, they really meant home made. I never liked green tea since there is always this slightly bitter taste to the ice cream. This was smooth and silky, sweet and velvety. 

The goma ice cream tasted like it had just been grounded with large chunks of the black sesame seeds still in it. This is a definite must try at Isaribi Tei.

We were not disappointed with what were served at Isaribi Tei yet. So, when you are around Penang, along Jalan Chow Thye, do not miss this chance for truly excellent Japanese fare.

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