Minori: Mutiara Damansara's hidden, halal-certified destination for delectable Japanese dining

March 8, 2022




Paying homage to prized ingredients with careful, clear-eyed preparations, Minori promises a full harvest's worth of fresh, clean flavours that honour Japanese culinary traditions.

Discreetly tucked inside Mutiara Damansara's Royale Chulan Damansara hotel, this is one of PJ's enduring destinations for a crowd-rousing Japanese meal.

There's something for everyone, with nearly 150 dishes that score high marks for quality and quantity, spanning air-flown seafood to the finest Japanese and Australian wagyu beef.

Minori is officially halal-certified, a rarity among Japanese restaurants in the Klang Valley. The kitchen accomplishes this by making all its own sauces with non-alcoholic substitutes for mirin and shoyu that preserve the essence of their taste.

Minori's Malaysian executive chef harnesses over 30 years of experience in Japanese fine dining, including professional stints in Japan, ensuring a confident experience for customers.

This is a calm, spacious venue that's perfect for privacy, with partitions for business meetings. The restaurant fits 50 to 100 people, an ideal event space for special occasions.

Its location is convenient, easily walkable from the Mutiara Damansara MRT station. If you're parking at the hotel, Royale Chulan Damansara offers a reasonable flat rate of RM7 per entry.


With such a comprehensive menu, it's easy to return over and over again to Minori to explore its breadth and depth.

For the ideal introduction, start with the Salmon Sanshumori (RM46.20), a salmon devotee's treasure trove of salmon sashimi, belly and roe. The sashimi and belly are cut in large slices that offer lusciously smooth, full-bodied flavour and texture. 

This beautifully represents Minori's produce at its peak and prime - Japanese seafood imports come in twice a week, every Tuesday and Friday, when regulars make sure to visit Minori for everything from amberjack to tuna.


If you can't resist sushi rolls, Minori offers plenty of possibilities, from the eel enthusiast's Unagi Roll to the prawn-passionate Dragon Roll. 

You can also request off-menu specials to add extra ingredients to your maki - avocado addicts will love the Unagi Roll with Avocado, a can't-fail combination, stuffed with tamago and crab sticks, studded with briny, pop-in-your-mouth ikura.

Watch out for occasional omakase-style dinners that might showcase other specialities - recently, Minori held Valentine's Day omakase celebrations that spotlighted Australian and Japanese wagyu for beef buffs.


Speaking of beef, the wagyu is wonderful here - the Wagyu Yoganyaki is a should-try, gorgeous with grilled Japanese beef at its most luxurious, cooked for two seconds on each side at 180 degrees Celsius on a volcanic hot stone stove.

This Japanese Wagyu A5 from Kagoshima prefecture (RM286 for 120 grams; RM354 for 150 grams) is the highest grade possible, hailed by many as the world's most exquisite wagyu. It's brilliantly buttery-tender, requiring minimal cooking to emerge at its prime, complemented by a subtle, savoury-sweet peanut shoyu sauce. 

If you're seeking an exceptional halal wagyu experience, search no further. Australian wagyu MBS 9-10 (RM170 for 150 grams; RM225 for 200 grams) is also available for a relatively more affordable comparison.

For a casual, wallet-friendly meaty meal, check out the Chicken Teppanyaki (RM35.20), a Japanese favourite with appetising hints of Western inspirations in its sauce. This is a buoyantly balanced ensemble of juicy poultry with crisp vegetables, their rich umami uplifted by garlicky-citrusy elements for a nicely rounded platter.

For fans of Japanese curries, creamy and mildly spiced, the Ebi Furai Curry (RM39.60) will satiate your cravings. Its plump fried prawns, crunchy-breaded and golden, surface over a curry with delightful depth, not sweetly one-note but loaded with veggie-enhanced flavours, complete with rice, miso soup and pickles for a treat that remains true to Tokyo traditions.


It might seem difficult to find a fulfilling halal ramen bowl in KL - thankfully, Minori's Shoyu Ramen (RM26.40) is potent and pleasurable, brimming with firm, bouncy noodles submerged in a choice of shoyu or shio-flavoured broth, blanketed with chicken chashu, egg, nori, corn, broccoli and beansprouts for noodles that taste nourishingly, lovingly wholesome.


Minori Japanese Restaurant
First Floor, Royale Chulan Damansara Hotel, Jalan PJU 7/3, Mutiara Damansara, 47810 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.
Daily, 12pm-230pm, 6pm-10pm. Tel: 012-2282-268

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