Newest Tao in Town

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Nope, this is not an ancient Chinese temple but just one of many decorations in newly opened Tao Japanese buffet restaurant at Times Square Penang. This reminded me that it has been a while since I returned to Times Square, particularly nothing special there and was having bad experience with a guard there for shooting photos on their building (WTF?). Anyway, let’s go!

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

The restaurant is located at 1st floor of Times Square Penang. It is the fourth Tao branch in Malaysia. In the same building, you will find another buffet restaurant owned by the same management – YEA. I actually visited it back in June 2012 and the experience was mixed. First of all, it was a Tuesday evening with less customers and yet time limit was still imposed. We were being “chased out” after dining there for 2 hours. Considering you have to spend time grilling and cooking, YEA is definitely not a place for relaxation if time limit is still imposed during weekdays.

铁板烧 Teppanyaki

What is the different? At YEA, most items are DIY. For Tao, you do not need to get your hand dirtied as the crews will serve you sizzling hot stuff.

刺身 Sashimi

Tao also provides you tons of sashimi.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

First let’s look at at interior. The dining area is spacious.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

There are two types of seating – table and tatami.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

If you take a closer look, the restaurant assembles hotel’s elegant dining environment.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Not to be missed are some antique stuffs found inside the restaurant. The owner sure spent a lot of cha-ching on those things, even though most of them are replica… I guess.

Fresh Seafood

Let’s start with some valuable items of any buffet. Raw oyster is definitely a must-try. I actually paid this Tao a second visit and the oysters “shrunk” a bit.

刺身 Sashimi

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Sashimi, again, is a must-try. With RM62++ price tag, take as many as you can. Bring along a Tupperware as well (just kidding).

Sake Nigiri

There is a sushi counter as well. For me, I will go for salmon sushi.

Assorted Sushi

Wasabi is provided on each table. For “red ginger”, it is available on top of the sushi counter, which can easily be missed.

Assorted Sushi

The type of sushi is different for each day.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

A collection of the sushi of the day.

铁板烧 Teppanyaki

Teppanyaki Corner is one of my favorite stops. Make sure you bring along your “order clip” when placing order, so that the food will return to the right owner later. Make sense?

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Basically, take a bowl (available below the sizzling table) and select items you like. Usually a waiter will be there to serve you.

Teppanyaki Corner (Enoki)

Some of my favorite items include Enoki

Teppanyaki Corner (Salmon)


Teppanyaki Corner


Teppanyaki Corner (Sea Cucumber)

… and sea cucumber!

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Next to the Teppanyaki corner is BBQ corner. The food tasted good with added salt, seasoning, and charcoal fragrance. Even better, it is prepared by an experienced crew.

Chicken Stick

Some of my favorites include chicken

Prawn Stick


Fish Stick

… and fish.

Lamb Stick

Also available is lamb on a stick.

烧烤物 BBQ

You should try mushroom if you like it. It is juicy with sprinkled salt. I can easily go for second round for this corner.

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Kantodaki (关东煮) corner. Locals call it “Lok Lok”. Somehow the food was submerged into the boiling soup for too long, causing some ingredients to become soft. With RM62++ price tag, there are better options.

辛酱烤扇贝 Motoyaki Scallops

Don’t forget that you still have a menu to order some ala-carte items (There is a “cold plate” corner but I will just skip it for now. Too many items to write :p). One of the common items customers will order is scallops. Each set only consists of 2 pieces so make sure you order more to satisfy your taste bud.

白玉扇贝 Jade Scallop

Alternatively, steamed version of scallops are also available but it will take a while to prepare.

鲑鱼腌木瓜 Pickled Papaya Salmon

Pickled Papaya Salmon is also worth trying.

小章鱼 Chuka Idako

Chuka Idako – my favourite. However, this one was just average as garlic taste is a bit strong.

芝士生蚝 Kaki Hiroyaki

Cheese-baked Oyster – An alternative to raw oyster and… yummy!

盐烧秋刀鱼 Sanma Shioyaki

Salt Grilled Pacific Saury – beware of bone.

Assorted Dessert

Time for some desserts. Dessert corner is new for this new branch.

Red Bean Soup

For red bean soup, it was okay the first time we visited the restaurant. For second visit, however, the soup was overcooked, making it tasteless and too thick to enjoy.  They also provide Soy Bean Soup. However, be aware that almond was added so if you couldn’t stand the “wonderful taste” of Chinese almond, it is best to skip it.

Chocolate Fondue

My favourite dessert is Chocolate Fondue.


The only item to dip is Marshmallow. Of course, it doesn’t stop my creativity by putting fruits available next to the counter into a stick and make them into “chocolate fruits”.

Ice Cream

Last but not least, ice cream is my favourite as well. From observation, Tao uses King’s ice cream. A tip here is that try to pour it with chocolate fondue. It tastes extremely yummy!

道 Tao, Times Square, Penang, Malaysia

Even the price is slightly expensive than other Tao branches. Tao @ Times Square is by far the biggest Tao branch with the most choices, to an extend that you can’t really differentiate whether you are dining in a shopping mall or a hotel. Unlike other buffet restaurant, Tao prepares most food by orders and serve them hot. With RM62++ price tag, Tao is worth trying especially during weekdays.

Weekday (Mon – Thu)
Lunch: 12pm – 4pm, RM46++
Dinner: 5:30pm – 10:30pm. RM62++

Weekend (Fri – Sun)
Lunch: 12pm – 4pm, RM46++ (Friday only), RM62++ (Sat, Sun & Public Holidays)
Dinner Session 1: 5:30pm – 8:00pm, RM62++
Dinner Session 2: 8:30pm – 11:00pm, RM62++

Eearly bird (5:30pm – 6:30pm) entitled for 10% discount. Only applicable from Mon – Fri.

My location
Get Directions
Place Name:Tao Authentic Asian Cuisine
Address:Penang Times Square, George Town, 10150, Penang
Tel:+604-210 9020
Working Hour:12pm - 4pm, 5:30pm - 10:30pm
Tax:10% Government Tax, 6% Service Tax
Last Visit:27-Sep-2012