This eye-catching new Japanese eatery at Pavilion offers an enticing range – with some Korean & Malaysian twists – that runs from kimchi sushi to chilli-sauteed baby sea conch; it’s admirably ambitious, though with a selection this sweeping, there are bound to be both hits & misses.

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The Venue’s As Extensive As the Menu

The venue’s as extensive as the menu, comprising multiple settings & seating styles; professionally constructed, no less than what we’d expect from the first Japanese-themed foray by the industrious team that also operates mall-based establishments Weissbrau, Spasso Milano, Limoncello & Svago.

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Steamed Fish Eggs

Our Chochin favourite: Steamed fish eggs (RM21 before taxes) – chunky & creamy-buttery – topped with crisp veggies, soaked in a light, sweet-sour chilli gravy that complements the fish eggs more effectively than expected. Comfort food for fans of fish eggs.

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Deep-Fried Chicken Liver

Deep-fried chicken liver (RM13++) is something else we’d also order again here; expertly executed, with the perfect hint of bloodiness to keep it tasty. Hmmm, fish eggs plus chicken liver – sounds exactly like our ‘nasi kandar’ must-have components.

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Squid Stuffed with Otak-Otak

Squid stuffed with otak-otak (RM28) sounds like something a Nyonya restaurant would be more likely to serve, but it works well for the izakaya concept too. A savoury snack to pair with hours of drinking.

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Octopus Tentacles

The list of skewers is long; these octopus tentacles (RM18) are tasty, though they’re tricky to eat, stuck tightly to the sticks.

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Chicken Karaage

Chochin’s chicken karaage (RM25) proves fabulously juicy, but it’s accompanied by an artificial-tasting cheese dip – not exactly fondue, despite what the menu states.

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Okonomiyaki

The okonomiyaki is OK, thick with seafood (RM28) & certainly not as doughy or stodgy as the worst ones out there.

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Rice-Free Roll Ringed with Cucumber & Stuffed with Unagi

A rice-free roll ringed with cucumber & stuffed with unagi sounds a bit better on paper than it tastes on the plate; maybe the eel could be of a better quality. Still, this seems pretty fairly priced at RM23.

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Peach Beach

Peach Beach (RM40), a maki with the uncommon component of peach, plus avocado, cucumber & crab stick (the building blocks of a California Roll), crowned with salmon slices. Visually, it’s a mess, but it tastes flavoursome enough, thanks to the thick topping of a kiwi fruit sauce. It’s massive – perfect for the peckish.

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No Lack of Liquor

No lack of liquor, from wine & beer to shochu & sake, vodka & to tequila to makgeolli.

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Location and Contact Details

Izakaya AKA Chochin

Lot C3, Level Three, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 03-2110 6118

Find Izakaya AKA Chochin’s directory listing here.

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