As a little girl, Taeko Hasegawa loves going to magic bars and shows in Japan. The power of magic has such a spellbinding effect on her that it prompted Taeko to open J&P Magic House in KL with her husband Hiroyuki.
Barely months old in the city F&B scene, J&P (Jewel & Planet) has already cast its spell on Japanese expats, tourists and locals with its resident magicians’ performances. The demure expectant mother hopes that their magic would bring as much joy to both children and adults here as it did to her.
Sited in a refurbished double-storey shophouse, Taeko has drawn on her love for Moulin Rouge to give the restaurant a seductive boudoir-like setting while the upstairs lounge mimics a plush gentlemen’s club cum study, designed for intimate soirees.
She tells us her choice of a mod-Italian menu is due to the cuisine’s wide appeal that transcends gender, age and race. “It’s easier to eat compared to Japanese or Asian cuisine which requires fiddling with chopsticks.”
Moulin Rouge-inspired interiors that oozes seductive opulence
Sliced toast served with balsamic vinegar and olive oil plays second fiddle to the scrumptious cheesy carbonara dip. The five-course dinner opens with a salad; it can be a refreshing feta cheese salad that has mixed green with swirly carrot spirals, black olives and diced feta drizzled with balsamic dressing.
Entrée is usually pasta - we sampled a scrumptious fettucini chicken bolognese (minced chicken with carrot, onion and celery in a robust tomatoey sauce with parmesan shavings (a la carte orders at RM22-RM42 per plate). Cooked al dente, it's a surefire crowd-pleaser.
Alternatively, there's pizza which we can vouch for especially the Pizza Quattro Stagioni (RM30). Generously topped with artichoke, green olives, pepperoni, turkey ham and mozzarella on a tomato sauce-slathered base, you'd be hard-pressed to stop at just one slice.Prefer something more substantial to leave you replete? Then take your pick from the main courses available such as grilled lamb rack with black pepper sauce and grilled veges (RM56), grilled barramundi with spinach, black caviar and baked tomato (RM48) and mixed seafood platter (RM62) among others.
Turf or surf? You decide...lamb rack (top), fish and seafood (bottom) main courses to tempt you
Classic dessert such as panna cotta (RM18) with fresh fruits, tiramisu (RM20) and molten chocolate souffle (RM22) are the sweet mainstays to build up the anticipation for the impending show.
Our skepticism vanished the minute the magicians displayed their nifty tricks at our table; astounding us with cards and coins that disappear and reappear out of thin air. We like how the performers rope in diners to help, making the experience even more memorable.
Trust us, the show is so enjoyable that time will just fly by in a bat of an eyelid. It makes for an entertaining evening out if you're tired of the usual ho-hum dinner and drinks amidst loud blasting music.
J&P Magic House, 19 Jalan Berangan, Kuala Lumpur. Tel: 03-2110 0221