Japanese meets French cuisine elevated with local ingredients

If you are on the lookout for a really decadent high-quality eating practical experience, Shin’Labo by Chef James Received need to be on your listing.

We had been lately addressed to an omakase with Chef James Gained at his newest elegant joint, found on the Floor Ground of LaLaport Bukit Bintang City Centre, and here’s our evaluate.

Transcendental is the word that comes to mind upon getting into Shin’Labo by James Gained. Right from when you phase into the cafe, the sense of it is fast — you know you are about to enter into a lush working experience. Positioned just by the fountain at the main entrance of LaLaport Bukit Bintang City Centre, Shin’Labo sets out to reinvent the omakase expertise by marrying Japanese cuisine with that of French, though applying very carefully sourced indigenous Malaysian elements.

The workforce at Shin’Labo with Chef James Won (centre), in the Shin’Kappou.

The name ‘Shin’Labo’ is a fairly intelligent participate in on words rooted in the Japanese phrase ‘shin’, which can suggest 真, “true” 伸, “extend” 新, “new” 心, “heart”. ‘Labo’, on the other hand, carries the similar this means in both equally Japanese and French: laboratory. Accurate to its name, you will discover all kinds of laboratory machines dotted around the Shin’Lounge as you enter, this kind of as beakers and conical flasks.

In accordance to Chef James Won, connoisseur extraordinaire, the idea of Shin’Labo stems from his personal aspiration to revitalise the yōshoku — Western-affected cooking in Japanese delicacies — by elevating it utilizing contemporary French procedures. Therefore, dishes this sort of as Truffle Hayashi Rice and Binchotan Duck à l’orange grace the menu, and are just a couple of several experimental dishes from what Shin’Labo has to provide.

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Shin'Labo James Won
Chef James Gained in the Krug Ryotei.

For those who are unaware, Chef James Gained is a thing of a pressure majeure in the Malaysian wonderful dining scene, and his enthusiasm for high quality food stuff can be traced back to his time in Champagne, France, exactly where he first skilled, and then to some of Japan’s finest Michelin 3-star eating places, in advance of he took his expertise and encounter to Malaysian grounds. With the now productive French-Malaysian establishment Bouchon Enfin underneath his belt, Shin’Labo is with out a doubt Chef James Won’s enjoy letter to Japan, specially to yōshoku delicacies.

What you could possibly notice even prior to you enter Shin’Labo is its unique deficiency of windows, and the moment you’re inside of, you’ll comprehend why. What Chef James Received intends to introduce with Shin’Labo is an personal ambiance — a sensation that you are becoming taken on a gastronomic journey that need to exist on a unique plane than what you know. The Shin’Lounge seats just about 14 friends, evoking a variety of exclusivity akin to that of an invitation-only club.

Maison du Caviar Caspienne

Shin'Labo James Won

Before you adjourn to the Shin’Kappou — the only eating area in Shin’Labo, separated just by a sliding doorway — we suggest you make your way to the Maison du Caviar Caspienne. Set up as a luxe bar and caviar lounge, below is where by you will be capable to see and style prime-tier, pure-breed sturgeon caviar that has been farmed and chosen specifically from heritage sites of the Caspian Sea. As Chef James Gained affirms, the caviar presented at Shin’Labo is the crème de la crème — regardless of whether it’s the robust Royal Beluga or the milder and smoother Baerii, or even the loaded and nutty Sevruga that is normally incorporated into the dishes served at the omakase.


What would make a fantastic appetiser? As Chef James Received clarifies to us at the start off of the evening, it is about keeping us on our toes as we foresee the major study course it leaves us wanting extra. Thus to begin with, we were being offered with a one of a kind take on the Omurice, an omelette dish classically designed with fried rice and scrambled eggs.

Chef James Won offers to us a tempura form of the original, deliciously fried in batter as an alternative and topped with a quantity of sauces that truly enhance this more nuanced version. Served as an together with the soften-in-your-mouth Hambagu and Korokke — the Japanese interpretation of the hamburger patty and croquette — this amuse-bouche trio kicks off Shin’Labo’s appeal of subverting its customers’ anticipations. 


Shifting on to the main dishes, the emphasize of the evening was the Hokkaido Scallop and Caviar, which was unquestionably to die for. Frivolously steeped in sauce and topped with a generous heap of the loaded and nutty Sevruga caviar, the dish has our mouth watering right before we get to taste it. Chef James Gained has cleverly ready the parts to let us to take in the dishes with just a person chunk, and enable the flavours mingle in our mouths as we consume.