Den Local Japanese Food @ Lembah Permai, Tanjung Bungah, Penang.
Far deep in the F&B park of Lembah Permai is a food court consists of local hawker fare as well as international cuisine. One particular corner stall sees a steady regular patrons hovering the common area right in front of the stall would be Den Local Japanese Food- a humble and unpretentious eatery manned by a young couple with Japanese speaking-accent (which I presumed they are Japanese or at least, either one of them is). It does not take a long time to read the menu, which is clearly written on a wall-mounted blackboard with prices illustrated next to the names of the dishes. There are only a few Rice dishes available as well as two sides. Taco Rice and Japanese Curry (with Pork Cutlet) are some of the regulars' favorites; the young couple runs the business with Japanese attitude- all dishes must be brilliantly presented in an artsy manner and the way of serving the dish is also meticulously thought of. No sophisticated setting (just like an ordinary hawker place), Den Local Japanese Food encourages the return of diners by carefully pricing their dishes (with most dishes priced under the Rm 15 mark) and serving the best they could.
Many opted for their Japanese Curry Pork Cutlet Set (Rm 13) but we did not want something heavy and we were in the interest to go for their Japanese Curry Rice (Rm 7.50/ small). Chicken pieces were used instead of a huge slab of Deep Fried Japanese Pork Cutlet. It was nicely presented with different color-elements artfully placed over the dish. The Japanese Curry had an indelible sweetness, potentially extracted from Onions (or maybe Apples?)... with a Peppery after-taste. The thickness was perfect and everything was deftly seasoned to the right spot, beautifully complementing the Rice and crunchy greens. The small portion was more than sufficient for me and it comes with a complimentary bowl of Miso Soup.
Den brought in one of the clever inventions of the Okinawans- Okinawa Taco Rice (Rm 7.50/ small), said to be the first and only on the island; Den's Taco Rice had Japanese Rice as base while the Tomato-Minced Pork concoction laid on a raft of julienned Cabbage, jeweled with a spoonful of Tomato Puree and sprinkled with Cheese Powder. It tasted exactly like Taco but with a slightly different texture. The Tomato Puree adds a refreshing touch to the dish by introducing another layer of acidity... refreshing yet substantial.
Taste: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good) *8/10 for the Japanese Chicken Curry Rice*
Service: 7.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Parking: 7/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Price: 8/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 cheap)
Ambiance: 6.5/10 (1-3 bad, 4-7 average, 8-10 good)
Service Charge: No
Address: 16D, Lebuh Lembah Permai 4, 11200, Tanjung Bungah, Penang.
Business Hours: 6 pm to 9:30 pm. Closed on Tuesdays.
Contact Number: 6016- 508 8660