2015 Menu: Uokatsu @ Plaza Damas 3, Sri Hartamas

August 12, 2015

Everything's going swimmingly for Uokatsu, which has netted a reputation as Sri Hartamas' pre-eminent purveyor of Japanese-origin seafood since 2014. Now sailing into its second year, Uokatsu is making waves with a new season's worth of the ocean's opulence - whether you like your fish & molluscs raw or cooked, the tide will turn in your favour here.

The sashimi selection evolves as the months change, but highlights often include hamachi, buri, tai & kanpachi, mostly costing between RM30 & RM44 for several satisfying slices of one type of fish. Crowds love the botan ebi (RM19) - the restaurant reputedly sells a few hundred of this succulent shrimp every week. And for lovers of uni, Uokatsu's sea urchin reigns supreme.

 Our favourite new orders here are the rice bowl recipes - warm, creamy comfort, resting on classic traditions of cooking. Whether it's the Tai Meshi (RM30), blanketed with sea bream, seaweed & a raw egg, or the Mentai Rice (RM18), burnished with soft, thick strips of roe-topped omelette, this is the sort of lunch that Uokatsu's loyalists return for over & over again, cramming themselves into this compact outlet's 10 tables after falling in love with its scoops of premium Akitakomachi rice.

 A mollusc from northern Japan for every budget: If you're in the mood for splurging, make a booking for Uokatsu's Hokkaido oyster at least two days in advance; it's RM200 an oyster but can be sliced & shared - a behemoth that's fleshy & flavoursome. Alternatively, Hokkaido scallops are also available, capably grilled in their own briny jus, for RM33 a pop.

Uokatsu's respect for its catch, from trusted suppliers in Japan, shines in how fish is prepared to showcase its best attributes; specials include house-made air-dried mackerel (RM20 for half) & grilled tuna cheek (RM16 for 100 grammes), but even the non-seafood dishes are worth sampling, from the signature onsen tamago (RM3.50) to rich-textured otokomae tofu (RM11) to the familiar but finely executed braised burdock root (RM8).

 The menu is extensive enough that you might not need dessert, but you'll probably want it: If Hokkaido melons are in season, snatch a sweet slice for RM15. Otherwise, wrap up with Uokatsu's own ice cream in flavours of wasabi, black sesame & French vanilla (RM9 each). Wash down with leisurely sips of sake or genmaicha; many thanks to Uokatsu for having us here.

B-0-7. Plaza Damas 3, Jalan Sri Hartamas 1, Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-6201-0339
Lunch: Tues-Fri, 1130am-230pm; Sat-Sun, 1030am-230pm. Dinner: Thurs-Sat, 6pm-10pm

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