If you like creative Japanese cuisine, alcoholic desserts, and inventive cocktails, Rolling Daruma x Olfactory Bulb hits all the right spots, served in a cozy setting ideal for intimate get-togethers. The Hubs and I stumbled on this place purely by chance: we were hunting for dinner around Kota Damansara and saw their menu on the sidewalk; our interest piqued by offerings of Japanese tapas, donburis, and ramen.
Two red darumas greet visitors at the entrance, where the bar is. The space is mostly black and grey, with warm lights and concrete accents, giving it an industrial look. I especially like the decorative cracks on the wall, which are varnished to create a glossy look.
The menu is pretty extensive, but since we were not very hungry, the Hubs and I decided to share a main, a Japas (japanese tapas), and a drink.
Our choice of Japas was Bourbon-Peach Pulled Pork on Deep-Fried Mantou Bun (RM16), featuring pork shoulder loin, slow cooked til tender for eight hours in balsamic vinegar and peach and bourbon sauce. The taste of the bourbon is mild, but it lends a rich depth to the soft, melt-in-the-mouth pulled pork. The fried mantou is crisp on the edges and soft on the inside, so you have a nice medley of flavours and textures.
We also got their signature Gyoza Ramen in Sake Pork Bone Broth (RM24). I was expecting the gyoza to be served on the side and was surprised to find them swimming in the soup, which also came with egg, a smattering of seaweed, corn, and spring onions. Some ramen dishes come with rich soup; this was mild but still flavourful, so you don’t feel overwhelmed. The noodles were too soft for my liking, but otherwise this was a decent bowl of ramen.
No libations for me, but the resto serves plenty of non-alcoholic drinks too such as mocktails and shakes. We got a Salty Yuzie-San (RM16), a refreshing mix of lemon, kaffir lime leaves and yuzu sauce balanced with pandan syrup, brown sugar, and soda water. Perfect for quenching your thirst on a hot day, or just to cut through any greasiness from the food.
Service was friendly with most of the servers, but the one assigned to our table was probably having a bad day because he looked tired and sounded disinterested when taking our orders, and seemed to heave a visible sigh when we requested for an extra bowl. I hope you have a better day, man!
There are still many things we have yet to try at Rolling Daruma x Olfactory Bulb; and I’d like to make a return visit when I’m in the neighbourhood again to try their other items – reviews seem to be stellar for their desserts and coffee.
ROLLING DARUMA X OLFACTORY BULB
15-2, Jalan PJU 5/13 Dataran Sunway, Kota Damansara, Petaling Jaya 47810, Selangor
Open: Wed-Fri (5.30PM – 11.30PM), Sat-Sun (11.30AM – 11.30PM). Closed Mondays and Tuesdays