Home Food Reviews Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ Restaurant, Publika

My Gyu-Kaku experience starts now…

I tend to notice the smoky ambiance first, whenever I step into a Korean barbeque restaurant. Despite the rows of exhaust fans on top, you always end up smelling like barbecued meat when you leave. Surely many of you agree. ;)


When I heard Gyu-Kaku – a popular Japanese BBQ chain – in Publika offers diners a sizzling good experience minus the smoke, I was intrigued. Each table comes with a smokeless roaster and down-draft system, so the smoke from the grill is sucked into the underground duct.




Imported grill from Japan

Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ Restaurant serves halal-certified dishes and the menu includes a fine selection of wagyu beef, seafood, poultry and lamb. It was almost a full house when I was there, with diners tucking into their food and delicious sizzles from the meats on hot charcoal grill.


Assorted Namuru


Shrimp gyoza


Chicken Karaage

I tucked into appetizers of pickled namuru, chicken karaage, shrimp gyoza and a warm horenso salad. And they gave me some sake to sample so that made dinner more fun. The light nibbles were a good start to dinner – I particularly liked the namuru and warm horenso salad; the latter was tossed with a light and aromatic goma sauce, topped with crispy garlic chips.


Warm Horenso Salad




Love the casing!


It’s best to wear a bib…

Bibs are provided and if you’re a messy eater, I suggest you make good use of it. The beef tongue (RM21.90) didn’t sound very appealing but boy, did it taste good! We ordered another portion of this because it was that delicious. It was fatty and succulent at the same time.


Beef tongue


Fuku Set — beef tongue, karubi (short ribs), marinated karubi, fillet (tenderloin) and rump cap.

Other meats we had were the karubi, marinated karubi with shabu dressing, tenderloin and rump cap, all part of the Fuku Set. I also tried Gyu-Kaku’s wagyu selection — the wagyu karubi, wagyu rump cap and wagyu tenderloin. Good stuff.


Wagyu platter – karubi, tenderloin and rump cap


Sizzling hot!

The short ribs were good stuff – both the marinated and non-marinated version. You get a range of dipping sauces to go with the meats, but I prefer eating mine without. The wagyu karubi and rump cap were tasty from the fat and meltingly tender with a smoky flavour from the grill. I could eat many servings of these. :)


Check out the marbling!


As this is a DIY concept, you get control of the doneness of your meat; I like mine medium rare so I only sear both sides for 3-4 seconds. The wagyu tenderloin boasts a marble score 7; juicy, tender and tasty from the marbling.


Wagyu tenderloin marble score 7. Very tasty!


If you want carbs, order the garlic fried rice. That said, I found it just alright so only order this if you’re still hungry after all the meat.


Assorted vegetables (RM18.90)


Garlic fried rice

Gyu-Kaku offers a selection of soups, mostly miso based ones. The tofu chige soup caught my fancy (even though it’s Korean, not Japanese) and it was adequately spicy and sour, which generous chunks of chicken – enough to keep me satisfied.


Tofu chige soup

Deep fried red bean with banana (RM9.90) came in the form of a spring roll with chocolate drizzles – my favourite dessert that night. Also noteworthy was the milk pudding (RM9.90), topped with soy bean powder and Japanese brown sugar syrup. This was light, creamy and aromatic from the caramelised sugar.


Deep fried red bean with banana


Milk pudding topped with soy bean powder and Japanese brown sugar sryup


Green tea ice cream

Alternatively, diners can opt to go for something more straightforward – ice cream (RM8.90 for two scoops). I tried the green tea, topped with red bean. After two hours or so at Gyu-Kaku, I walked out very satisfied and not smelling like grilled meat. Yay for that!


Raimon Isuke Sake



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Ambiance: 7/10
Price: 6.5/10
Food: 7/10 (pork free)
Verdict: The meats were reasonably priced and of good quality.


Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ Restaurant, Publika
Block D3-Level G3-Unit 3,
Solaris Dutamas
Tel: 03-6211 5446
Facebook Fanpage

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ulric November 26, 2013 - 7:09 pm

Oh…they have another branch now…I tried their first one in Isetan 1Utama…love the smokeless environment! =)

Bangsar Babe November 26, 2013 - 11:21 pm

Yeah, I remember you told me about the 1U outlet. ;)

iza January 3, 2014 - 3:17 pm

Hi Bangsarbabe,
Love reading all your reviews.
But for this one maybe you can edit the HALAL part [change to PORK FREE] as the restaurant still serving SAKE and other alcoholic beverages… Thanks in advance ;)

Bangsar Babe January 3, 2014 - 3:29 pm

Hi iza,

Thank you for the comment. Yes, I did contemplate using Pork Free, but as confirmed with the management, they said all the food and ingredients used are halal, hence my decision to use the label halal. :)

Could you maybe enlighten me further about the notion? Because I might have to change a lot of labels to pork free.

iza January 15, 2014 - 12:48 pm

Dear Bangsarbabe

Maybe you can refer to this page : http://asrichascroesus.blogspot.com/2008/11/difference-between-halal-pork-free.html


Ping February 28, 2014 - 11:10 am

a restaurant cannot label itself halal unless it is certified by Jakim.
Although it may use some or all halal ingredients, the practices in preparing the food may not adhere to halal standards. It’s quite a complex and complicated procedure and difficult to be actually called so. One of the requirements is also to have Muslim supervisors overseeing the restaurant. Everything down to the nitty gritty like bristles of a brush, etc. Therefore if it doesnt actually have Halal certification, it may only legally label itself pork-free as the next best thing.

Bangsar Babe February 28, 2014 - 4:18 pm

Noted. Thanks for shedding some light on this. :)

AA June 22, 2014 - 8:49 am

I’m sure the procedure is halal as well (except the sell sake). The owner is a famous muslim.


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