We found out about Unkaizan through TripAdvisor. It is situated slightly off the main road, on a very steep part of the hill, which made parking the car very interesting.
I quite liked how it is housed in a homely environment. Without the signage, it would not even cross my mind that there was a restaurant hiding behind that facade.
We noticed that some of their wait staff were actually Japanese and immediately we felt, okay, we may end up having a really authentic Japanese experience. Starting with warm towels and green tea with oomph, things were looking promising.
With rave reviews and an experienced chef (Chef Katsuji Takabayashi had 15 years of experience in 5-star international hotels around the world), we had high expectations. The Nabeyaki Udon came a hotpot atop a charcoal burner. The handmade udon noodles came with tempura, vegetables and an egg in simmering soup. Nothing beats warm food.
We tried a few sets, too. There was the Wakadori Teriyaki Set (chicken fillet with teriyaki sauce)...
... the Bento Set, which includes appetizer, assorted sashimi, tempura, unagi kabayaki (water eel), chawamushi, rice (in an adorable wooden tub), pickles, miso soup and ice-cream...
... and the Unagi Kabayaki Set, that came with the unagi sitting atop a charcoal grill...
For dessert, we chose to have their in-house handmade green tea ice-cream with red bean and...
... an ice-cream sandwich that looked like this:
Totally should have taken note of what it was called, as all we remembered was its taste because there was so much yum in that small thing! We liked it despite it being slightly pricey but I suppose, we have to remember to factor in authenticity, ambience and view (remember to ask for a window/balcony table).
Unkaizan Japanese Restaurant
Lot 395 Jalan Teluk Baru, Pantai Tengah, 07000 Langkawi, Kedah, Malaysia
Tel: +60 4 955 4118
Daily 6:00pm to 11:00pm (Closed every 2nd Wednesday of the month)