Genji, PJ Hilton

Think PJ Hilton is old, outdated and boring?
Shame on you!

(Well, err.. actually, I thought so too.. ) until one night I got re-educated..


Frat Mustard: “PJ Hilton sports a revamped night joint in the form of Uncle Chilli’s, & there are lots of ACTION here now. Really.”

genji - RS

“See? Told ya there’s action.” ;p

Being more of a food fanatic, I was more intrigued by the introduction of Zest, PJ Hilton’s blog for the restaurants and bar of the hotel, namely Padi Serai, Toh Yuen, Caffe Cino, Genji and Uncle Chilli’s.
The blog allows diners to share their dining experience with other online visitors & even through popular social sites like Twitter & Facebook. Regular updates on happenings, contests, photos, recipes plus e-newsletters keeps the blog fun and interactive.

With its recent tie-up with, a F&B website portal, a few lucky food bloggers had had the opportunity for a memorable dining experience at its outlets previously. Thanks to Frat Mustard, my turn came last week.

So here we are, at Genji, with its lovely interior reminiscent of a Japanese countryside restaurant, dotted with both modish and traditional Japanese objects d’art, waited upon attentively by the gracious wait staff.

genji - RS9

Sinking down to my chair, I relaxed, comforted by the surrounding tranquil ambiance and placed an order for their Genji’s Special mocktail, a concoction of Strawberry, Grenadine Syrup, Ginger Ale, Ground Ginger and Double Cream, and looked forward to an evening of opulence and indulgence.
For Unkaleong; it was nothing less than a Sake, (what else, for an alcoholic) of which he pronounced excellent.
Sadly I couldn’t concur with him on my mocktail, for it was rather diluted & lacked of any cream or ginger undertones. It tasted more of a sweet syrupy strawberry drink.

drinks & table setting

Service was most attentive, with a good looking Amos, the outlet manager literally at our beck and call 😉
He explained the restaurant’s concept, the dishes served, recommended one of the most delicious dish we had that night (the lobster) and was seriously the epitome of excellent service.

Unlike other reviews where a blogger dines on dishes that were pre-decided by the outlet or the chef, we were given the free hand to order anything from its extensive menu. And anything literally means anything, no matter the cost.

We started the gastronomical night with an order of the extravagant Sashimi Moriawase Matsu. After all, what better way to review a Japanese restaurant if not for its fresh fillets of raw fish?

Our eyes widen at the generous THICK cuts of salmon, maguro (tuna), kampachi (yellow tail), butterfish, sea bream, ikura (salmon roe) when the platter was served, and agreed that it was certainly value for money at RM180.

sashimi platter

I personally would have preferred thinner fillets, and more slices instead, for it was quite tricky to take smaller bites to slowly appreciate the taste of the fish. But every single slice was firm, glisteningly in its natural colour indicating absolute freshness.

Another noteworthy mention was the wasabi, full bodied and with ample sting to draw tears, definitely my kind of wasabi! 😉


Diners has the option to order ala-carte and prices below are for ONE slice.

genji - RS1

At Kura, One World Hotel just last Friday, Unka saw sea urchin on the sushi menu and heaps praises of how good it tasted. Since I have never tried such exotic stuff before, I took the opportunity to order this. At RM45 for the soft mass you see here, the best description I could came up with was it tasted very much like fish brain.


An acquired taste no doubt, of which I absolutely can’t get enough of!
The wobbly soft pulp sea creature glides down the throat easily and could have easily slurped in a bite. Darn, if only I didnt have to share.


The dish that really shone and stole the night.

genji - RS10

The Kobe was splendid, moist from its own fat with the tenderness that rendered every bite a delight. A tad salty for me, of which I’m sure would have been marvelous with some rice.


Amos then flitted over, teeth shining and asked if the evening was ok. Of course, we murmured, with mouth full of exquisite meat. Couldn’t be better, we said.
He then tsk-ed- tsked and proceeded to add an order of oysters for us, as it is an Genji specialty that shouldn’t be missed.
I then immediately requested for his recommendation of a lobster dish, having spied “lobster” on the menu earlier.
No problem, he grinned obligingly & proceeded to have “a word with the chef”.

Hence 15 mins later came the oysters, at an impressive length of 10 cm at least. The batter was crisp yet it didnt reek of grease. A bit bland of its own, its was nonetheless juicy, enjoyable mainly because it was so fresh.


We awarded the Lobster with merit points for its springy meat and firm texture. The Genji spicy mayo married perfectly with the flesh and a squeeze of lime completely transformed the boring mayo- seafish combo to something out of the ordinary.
Unka polished off whatever that was left in the head too, leaving the poor creature brainless.

genji - RS11

While it maybe a simple dish, the humble Chawanmushi never fails to excite if done well.
Here at Genji, they got it right; eggy, firm yet wobbly and absolutely smooth. Way better than loads others I have tasted elsewhere, which was normally watery, at the most reasonable price of RM12.


Amos appeared again (I did say he was the epitome of excellent service didn’t I?) and shook his head in disbelief at “how little we ate”. You haven’t tried our special “compressed” sushi yet, he protested. Hence, though stuffed, we went ahead with an additional order of the unagi with the compressed rice.
Arriving looking deceiving alike any other sushi, the key objective was to experience the difference in the rice’s makeup. The chef’s skills comes to test here, for he must be able to compact the rice to a certain degree of density, yet maintaining “looseness” where the rice shouldn’t felt like it is a ketupat!

We got a visit then from dear Frat, who unceremoniously hopped onto the centre of the plate vying for attention.


Naughty Frat, who wants a taste of everything..


He wanted some Sake to loosen up…

genji - RS3

drunk Frat

And got more than what he bargained for. For his neck got loosen, literally.
No thanks to UnkaLeong.
Dear Frat, ya’ alrite I hope??

Walking off some calories while waiting for desserts, we admired the tasteful decor and the layout of Genji. There are 2 spacious teppanyaki counters, 6 private ‘tatami’ dining rooms for private groups, a sushi bar as well as a tea lounge. Plenty of water features around with the soothing sound of flowing water makes for a laid back and relaxing ambience, which is much appreciated after a day’s work.

genji - RS12


genji - RS4

Correct me if I was misinformed, but Japanese desserts seems pretty stuck at green tea ice cream, mochi and azuki beans.
Pretty excited at first to see “Honjitsu No W..something“, which happened to be a Genji’s special, I was later informed that it is basically local Malaysian fruits with some mochi or ice cream (I can’t remember, darn.. I really should start taking notes while I eat), I huffed at the idea of eating papayas in a top Japanese restaurant & opted for the next most interesting item on the menu, Fried Ice Cream Mochi, only to be informed that it wasn’t available.
Face contorted at a very unpretty mask now, I resigned to ordering the Matcha Parfait, of which you see above & though it was good, it was boring.

Then a little bird named Amos fluttered by again, and after listening to me whine of my dessert woes, happily chirped that Genji’s special off -the- menu Goma Ice cream would be just the fix I need.

Goma ice cream

Earthy, full bodied sesame flavour, this Goma ice cream was a sweet wrap-up for the feast that night.

And just like a local radio station’s program who asked their listeners “So is your problem fixed?” whenever a solution was presented to their chosen listener, my reply was a satisfactory “Yes”.

Below: This is what a wasabi looked like, in its natural form. The next picture further below is freshly grated wasabi, which is available upon special request, subject to availability of the tuber of course.


Special thanks to and the affable marketing team of PJ Hilton, for a lovely night of food and company.

More on the, click here.

This Post Has 23 Comments

  1. FoOd PaRaDiSe

    wow… all the foods look awesome and the desserts. Yum yum!

  2. Selba

    I haven't eaten japanese food ages…. I miss it a lot! Don't count the japanese fast food! Eating real japanese such as sushi or yakiniku BBQ is much fun with someone else.. Ah.. must find the someone else, hehehe… Anyone? anyone? 😀

  3. Lisa

    Yummy yummy. Great shots too. Looking forward to do this again with you guys =)

  4. Lyrical Lemongrass

    Everything looks lovely. The sea urchin reminds me of my last experience where I ate up an entire plate and almost vomited after that. That's greed for ya, but it was so cheap in Sydney!

  5. "Joe" who is constantly craving


    i prefer my thick slices of sashimi..just take in the whole piece and enjoy the texture n the freshness..

    sea urchin is darn cheap in australia haha..i think we paid aud 12 for a whole kg (with shell n all la)

  6. thule a.k.a leo

    whooppss… quickly wipe saliva off the table and keyboard… lol!!
    becky… jenn dig those sashimi… better pray that she doesn't read your blog or else… hahaha!

  7. burpandslurp

    Oh everything looks amazing…except naughty Frat. lol. But looks like he wanted some fun, too!
    And the sesame ice cream looks AMAZING! Can't find that around here!

  8. Frat

    What does that clown think he is doing up on stage with the hot lady? Looks like he was having a bit TOO much fun.

    Hahahhaa… food looks great! I really love Genji. It is good Jap food… in a comfortable-mature setting.

    Not to worry my head is fine! If all else fails… UPGRADE BODY! heheheh.

  9. mimid3vils

    I almost forgot the taste of sashimi & wasabi~~ 🙁

  10. thenomadGourmand

    food paradise: yup, quality stuff i tell u!

    selba: haha..sure? anyone?? don't la babes.. ;p

    Lisa: oh yes. definitely looking forward for the next round!

    LL: cheap there? But yea..don't think i can take a full plate of that!

    joe: Hmm.. so thick it just fills my whole mouth, then I cant taste anything wor?

    leo: hehe.. ehh decide; Chef Choi or Jap??

    burpandslurp: No Goma ice cream?? so sad. But u got all that froyo!!

    frat: ahhh.. unkaleong will be so relieved 😉
    Genji is really good, muz try the Katsu Don next time. My fav!

    mimid3vils: really good right?

  11. babe_kl

    so lavish! genji rocks!!!

    sighhh which reminds me I need to move my butt to do my post

  12. sc

    only had the buffet at genji.. pretty good food too. lucky lucky you for such a yummy meal (on the house)!

  13. Sean

    wow, that's a great meal! ordering whatever you want is the best part! i might have gone crazy and asked for multiple servings of sea urchin, kobe beef and lobster!!! 😀

  14. UnkaLeong

    *hic* Alcoholic…Who? Me? Hehehe…Thanks for having us again Frat,Lisa and the marketing team of PJ Hilton.

  15. PureGlutton

    What a lovely meal! Slurrpss…especially the fish brain!

  16. CUMI & CIKI

    i heart urchin! in my last life i was a sea urchin..sez my husband.. so, i luv my own kind:P

    eh, i thot u had the giant oyster? where is it? i dont see no oyster.. ?

  17. J2Kfm

    "Unka polished off whatever that was left in the head too, leaving the poor creature brainless."

    hahahah … WHICH one? 😉

  18. backStreetGluttons

    Dear thenomadGourmand,

    We cordially would like to invite you to a simple makan session in Riana Green at 6pm on Sat 1 Aug 09..

    Simple menu Penang Kerabu Bihun & lobak.

    Pls reply RSVP


  19. thenomadGourmand

    babe_kl: YES! I heart Genji!

    sc: I think even the buffet is very good rite? Their stuffs really has the quality!

    Sean: Haha..nx time join us then!

    UnkaLeong: Tks for accompanying me 😉

    PureGlutton: It was indeed lovely. Lobster, sea urchin and Kobe..*sigh*

    c&c: Haha..the oyster were fried, which I think was kinda wasted. Should have asked for fresh instead! Eh if ya a sea urchin in yr yester -years, ya shouldn't be eatign 'em now rite??

    J2kfm: Oh.. ask Unka!! ;p

    bsg: Wahh..did i jz read lorbak?? Hoohooh…

  20. ai wei

    sluurp, slurrrp, slurrrp, the uni is looking so juicy!!!

  21. msihua

    Oh Gosh.. That is freaking awesome.. I wantsss some lobster tooo!!!!!!!!!!

    I should move to Japan… haih…

  22. thenomadGourmand

    ai wei: yes yes it is! Wanna try?? ;p

    msihua: Oh.. i would love to go to Japan! 😉

  23. reanaclaire

    waa…lauu…eh… so wonderful japs food.. my girl will be drooling when she sees this, man… but the price is also amazing la..haha…so expensive.. i think i cannot afford to eat those.. the other day i went to this arokomiji restaurant..(not sure how it was spelt), it was very expensive too.. 🙂

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