My breakfast one Saturday at Nara Kitchen was satisfying, so much so that I thought it warranted a return visit, which I promptly made very next day.
There are few, if any outlet that are able to please a diner with every dish on the menu.
Hence the variety in the menu, and even then it could be a play of luck for one to order the exact dish that you will enjoy.
I had Sean’s blog as reference for my Big Belly (RM25 + 6%). The visual alone was enough to convince me to order it, and the fact that the flavours agreed with me was a bonus.
When Kevin joined me later, his order of Tuna Tartar (RM29 + 6%) took me by surprise.
Damn, his order looked better than mine.
His was pure luck, for the description on the menu of “organic egg mayo, tomato salsa, wasabi gaucamole & buttered toast” hadn’t tempted me earlier.
But take a look at this and tell me it doesn’t look good?!
It tasted excellent by the way. If you love fresh fish and happened to be seeking a nutritious and filling breakfast to start your day (besides being different from the usual breakfast fry-up), this is it!
I can get calculative when I eat out.
In fact I have a tendency to break down the component of my meals and start calculating the ESTIMATED cost of each item on the plate.
Even at supermarket prices (F & B outlets would get their ingredients cheaper from suppliers) I personally felt that too many outlets overpriced their dishes.
This is even after factoring an estimated cost of the rent and so forth. But of course, this is a never-ending argument and I shall not go into details in this post.
The point that I’m trying to make here is that the items on Nara’s menu might strike you at first to be higher than usual compared to other brunch places/cafes, but once you take into consideration the portion and the cost of the ingredients used; namely fresh tuna, premium organic ingredients like quinoa, organic eggs, beetroot and avocado, just to name a few, its prices are fairly justified.
As an example the Tuna Tartare dish above may look deceptively small, but I reckon there were 2 -3 organic eggs to make up the 3 quenelles (the shape of the eggs as seen in the picture above) and 100g or so of fresh tuna to that timbale of tartare.
I am certain we have all experienced this before, ordering a egg mayo sandwich and realizing that the filling consisted of more mayo than actual eggs.
However, rest assured that the addition of mayo to eggs are minimal here, in fact it was just enough for taste and creaminess.
The breads are freshly baked in house and instead of throwing a few leaves of greens (as some cafes like to do for lowering cost as well as for convenience) the tomato salsa worked was paired with the raw fish.
A bit of tang to cut through the fishiness, so to speak, which worked better for the dish as a whole.
It can be said that the team at Nara did inject effort to serve wholesome meals with quality ingredients and at the same time ensuring that the flavours are in harmony on each plate.
Lastly, comparing the cost of the same dish prepared at home and having it served at an outlet is groundless.
If you are going to eat out, you would have to be prepared to pay a bit more.
However, as consumers we do not what to expect from reading the menu (can’t tell the sizing/portion even if the ingredients are listed) and from a pictorial menu the actual dish might or might not reflect what was pictured.
I have had many regrets of dishes ordered that wasn’t what I expected, and if I have known how it was like in the first place, I certainly wouldn’t have ordered it.
Thus the popularity of online reviews will not wane as more and more consumers seek details on the web before making a decision to purchase a product, visit a shop or to engage a service.
Hence I’ve alway made sure to provide honest opinions (though it is debatable since my palate is different from yours) and clear images of the dishes I sampled.
You can then decide if it is worth your time and money to patronise that particular outlet.
For Nara Kitchen I would recommend the Tuna Tartar and the Big Belly, both fulfilling and wholesome.
The “Whimsical Belgian Waffles” (RM22+) didn’t rock my boat. The waffles had crispy crust and a soft centre but fell rather flat in the taste department.
Of course you can always count on the maple syrup and ice cream to make up for that deficiency, but that is not the point.
Coffee are decent with beans sourced from Pulp. Kevin had no complaints of his cappuccino while the latte we shared on my 2nd visit proved to be satisfactory.
I enjoyed my Banana Blueberry Milkshake (RM16 +); blended with real fruits with no added sugar or puree. It might not be the healthiest since ice cream was included, but I take it as a consolation that at least it wasn’t Nestle kind of quality ice cream.
His Crunchy Chicken Fold (RM30 + 6%) was sufficiently tasty, though admittedly I thought the price was a bit steep for this.
Stuffed with fried chicken with asian slaw plus a generous heap of mixed greens on the side, the flavours worked well, but I’m sure you can imagine it that it would, since the accompanying savoury peanut sauce not unlike our local sate gravy.
All in all, Nara Kitchen & Co. is a calm and clean space serving dishes painstakingly crafted using the freshest and homemade ingredients with admirable results; resulting in meals with good harmony of flavours.
I have not tried the cakes so I’ll reserve comment, but a friend of mine had the Chicken Avocado and NaraDonBuri for lunch and gave thumbs up as well.
Service is excellent, the air conditioning cold and the WIFI works. Decor is minimal and clean.
As mentioned above, there are cakes available so if it is a light snack you’re after, Nara is an ideal venue. Cake options includes in-house favourites as well as some from a few popular bakers in town.
Nara Kitchen & Co.
61, SS21/1A, 47400
Petaling Jaya, Malaysia
Tue-Fri: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Sat-Sun: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
No contact number.