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Review: Tonkatsu by Ma Maison

>> Friday, March 15, 2013

Venue: Tonkatsu by Ma Maison, Eat Paradise, Isetan 1 Utama
Overall comment: Lovely tonkatsu!! Rice, soup, & cabbage are also refillable!
Halal: No - it's a very porky place!

Calling all fans of pork + Japanese food!

Ma Maison has landed in Malaysia since early this year i.e. 8th January 2013 & their much-favoured Tonkatsu is now available to please your taste buds! You'll only get to savour Ma Maison's specialties in Japan (16 outlets), Singapore (5 outlets), & yes, now in Malaysia as well! :D Ma Maison serves their well-loved pork loin, pork fillets, chicken & even seafood like pranws & oysters.

Ma Maison is tucked right behind Eat Paradise at Isetan, 1 Utama Shopping Complex. The restaurant's layout is very simple, yet each element has a story to tell, just like the typical Japanese restaurants. Their walls are adorned with strips of jeans (not wallpaper!), which they carefully stuck piece after piece on the wall, stacking in a way to look like mountains. Another side of the walls had paintings & Japanese words that explains how to eat Tonkatsu the 'right way', while the top of the open-concept kitchen had stacks of charcoals that represents the traditional way of cooking Tonkatsu by the Japanese :)

The highlight of Ma Maison is their free refill for salad, soup & rice*! Salad (cabbage) & soup have unlimited refills (at least for now, but Malaysians have very shocking character when it comes to free refills, I'm guessing that they may set a limit in time to come), while rice is refillable once.

Here at Tonkatsu by Ma Maison you'll be spoilt for choice with the good variety of sauces to go with your deep-fried pork/Tonkatsu. Say bye-bye to the "all-too-common" tomato & chili sauces as the Sweet Tonkatsu Sauce & Spicy Tonkatsu Sauce + Rock Salt will enhance your Tonkatsu dining experience! The roasted sesame seeds will also bring extra fragrance to the rice or meat that you order.

Simple tips on each table...

Below are some of their "appetizers" & best-sellers that I managed to try:

Oroshi (white radish) with Tamari dressing
This humble finely grated white radish "ball" can be eaten by itself or together with the Tamari dressing, which is a smoother, complex, & more balanced flavoured soya sauce. To summarize, it's a premium-grade soy sauce that is less salty. Having the oroshi as the 1st dish helps to refresh the digesting process of our bodies before we enjoy our Tonkatsu.

If you're not a fan of pickles, you'll still have to give this pickle a chance! Ma Maison's Tsukemono is recommended to be eaten along with their specially cooked rice to simulate the taste buds. It's a very appetizing pickle that is actually sweet with a hint of sour taste - I liked this although I'm not a great fan of Japanese pickles!

Multi-Grain Rice (RM4.50/bowl)/Premium Steamed White Rice (RM3.00/bowl)
The good thing about Ma Maison is that you can have 1 free refill of rice before you get charged for your 3rd bowl! This means, the 1st bowl comes with your Tonkatsu set + 1 complimentary bowl, then your 3rd bowl will be the one that is charged :D Ma Maison's multi-grain rice contains 14 different ingredients (seeds/beans/rice) & is a very healthy option from the usual Japanese white rice. However, those with high uric acid will want to avoid having this bowl of rice since it is filled with beans!

VERY different from the simple miso soup that every other Japanese restaurants serve, Tonjiru is a "premium-grade" miso soup that has 24-28 different ingredients! Ma Maison's Tonjiru is specially cooked in the Nagoya style & served best with their Tonkatsu. The soup has to be cooked the day before so that the rich flavours of the ingredients will be more evident in the soup the next day. It is very rich, flavourful, sweet, & savoury with an abundance of ingredients in the soup, ranging from pork lard (the small pieces floating on top of the soup), pieces of pork, carrots, radish, beancurd & more! Very similar to the Chinese-style "ABC soup" :D

Rosu Katsu Set 160g (RM23.90/set)
They also have a jumbo set of 250g piece of pork loin for RM28.90/set! Each set comes with a bowl of rice + a bowl of tonjiru + a plate of Tsukemono + a hill of salad (cabbage) + a serving of deep-fried pork loin a.k.a. rosu katsu. You'll love this if you love pork with a layer of juicy fat! It's the premium-cut of the loin ("center" of the loin) that is served in this set :D *drools*

Check out the layer(s) of fat...oolala...
The panko (Japanese bread crumbs) used by Ma Maison is also specially ordered & not alike "any other panko" - this one is extra crispy! Some may find the pork having that slightly "porky" smell/taste, but it's actually not as bad since it is deep-fried with good quality panko to "cover-up" that probably not-so-nice feeling :)

Hire Katsu Set (RM25.90/set)
This is also part of the loin, but it's the "corners" of the meat instead of the "center" part of the meat like the rosu. It is not as moist & juicy, but if you're more weight-conscious (fried stuff won't help in getting one slimmer :P), you can opt for this leaner part of the loin :)

Tokusen Ippon Hire Katsu Set (RM28.90/set)
This is a special deep-fried pork fillet, 180g. Alike the Hire Katsu, but this one is "round" & not a "flat" piece of pork. I found the meat more tender than the "hire" itself.

The meat that is nicely cooked...not over-cooked 'til it's tough & rough...

Katsu Don Set (RM25.90/set)
Deep-fried pork loin topped with egg & special soy sauce
Fans of eggs will LOVE this. I love the flavour of this simple dish as the rice also soaked up the gravy from the egg & sauteed onions! *yum yum* Definitely enough gravy & packed with aromatic eggs + onions + deep-fried pork...it's not flooded with gravy, nor too dry. I would eat this again!

Jumbo Prawn Set (RM37.90 for 1 prawn/RM52.90 for 2 prawns)
These prawns were huge! I loved the fact that the prawns tasted very fresh although they were deep-fried :D The sweetness of the prawns were "locked' within the crispy panko batter!

Special Ma Maison Tartar Sauce
All sauces can be separately ordered for a small price. Ma Maison's tartar sauce is added with some other ingredients to produce a richer-flavoured tartar sauce that enhances the taste of their deep-fried meats/seafood.

Negi Miso Hire Katsu Set (RM28.90/set)
Deep-fried pork fillet with Negi miso sauce/160g
The only difference this dish has compared to the Hire Katsu Set is the sauce + Japanese leek, which is WAY easier & nicer to eat compared to the pungent local/China ones. The Negi miso sauce tastes very similar to our Chinese "taucu" sauce...a good variant :)


  Ma Maison's Curry Sauce
Unlike the usual Japanese curry that you'll find in other restaurants, Ma Maison's curry is actually more spicy & has bits of pork! It's OH-SO-YUMMY!!

Every set meal will end with a simple dessert. Ma Maison changes their jelly flavour every 2 days...this one that we had is actually lemon-lime with tea. It's light but very fragrant :) The previous flavour was passion fruit, which I look forward to try someday!

I will certainly recommend this place for a good Tonkatsu meal. It may be slightly expensive, but for the portion, taste, & service that you get, it's WAY worth your every penny spent at Ma Maison! (I'm not paid to write good stuff for them...hahaha...but it's really good...)

Tonkatsu @ Ma Maison
2nd Floor, Eat Paradise, Isetan 1 Utama
Bandar Utama
Petaling Jaya.
Tel: (+603) 2096 2888
Business hours: Sun - Thu: 11:00a.m. - 10:00p.m. & Fri, Sat & Public Holidays: 11:00a.m. - 10:30p.m.
Facebook: Tonkatsu @ Ma Maison, MY

Presentation: * * * *
Price: * * *
Environment: * * * 1/2
Taste: * * * *
Service: * * * 1/2


Will be back for more!!


Unknown August 5, 2016 at 10:45 AM  

おいしい ですね
công ty xuất khẩu lao động nhật bản,xuất khẩu lao động nhật bản, xuất khẩu lao động đài loan

PerutBesi August 5, 2016 at 1:46 PM  

@Trung Hoang: It's indeed delicious! Hope u enjoyed the meal there :)

Anonymous August 14, 2016 at 1:31 AM  

Had a very bad experience in PUBLIKA branch. They didn't allow refill of the salad cabbage, because we had 5 pax only ordered 3 portion of the set meal, as my kids were not eating only took a piece of meat and continued playing their ipads. The rude lady manager rufuse refills!!!

Reason given by the Manager is that they cannot monitor if we are sharing or not, but the fact that we have 5 pax only order 3, they cannot allow refill. What a load of horse shit. Never coming back here!!

The disgusting experience Spoilt my appetite, food taste terrible.

PerutBesi August 15, 2016 at 3:40 PM  

@Anonymous: Oh my...really sorry to hear that. I hope you did inform the management of the Publika branch. I've never eaten at that branch & have always dined at the 1Utama branch, which thus far, I haven't encountered any of such issues. Perhaps you could try the 1Utama branch, but I would encourage u to submit a complaint for the Publika branch so that they can improve on their service.

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