Showing posts with label Japanese. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Japanese. Show all posts

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Hoka Hoka Sake Dinner for 2 Persons, from $880

 We noticed that Hoka Hoka Causeway Bay was doing a Set Dinner for two with Sake Pairing included.   The 9 Course dinner starts from $880 for two people inclusive,  including 300ml of sake.  For $980 you can get the full 720ml Sake Bottle with all the below food courses, and most dishes are served as 2 separate portions individually without sharing,  which is very generous.    Note:  These special prices must be reserved in advance.   The walk-in prices will be $1180 to $1280 respectively.


 

 

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This Month’s Special Sake Pairing Menu – Starting from $880 for 2 people
Aka Mebaru Fish Dinner Set and Sake Marriage Course.

 

 

 

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Sakes and Shochus -

 

 


 

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蓬萊泉 和 Houraisen Junmai Gingo,
from Aichi Prefecture,  Japan -
The whole 720ml Bottle is included if you pre-book the $980 Dinner Set for 2 people.


 

 

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Otoshi of Beancurd Strips -




 

 

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Hiyashi Cold Japanese Tomato Salad - 冷やしトマト
A nice starter in the Summer,  with a sour vinegar dressing and already peeled.  ~  7/10 



 

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Aka Mebaru Sashimi 2 Ways - 赤メバル
This is 2 people’s portion, and you receive the whole fish!!   We had 2 plates as we dined as 4 persons,  and one plate of this tasted slightly more fattier than the other.   I usually like thin cuts of this Aka Mebaru fish,  but this particular one performed with the thicker cuts.   Chef recommends very little soy or wasabi,  but mix it with the Sake above.  ~  7.5/10



 


 

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Thicker Cut of the Aka Mebaru -


 

 

 

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Soy & Ginger Stewed Abalones - トコブシの生姜煮付け
I was surprised because this is only 1 person’s portion,  which means each person gets 2 abalones!!  It paired really well with the Sake above,  bringing out the pear fruitiness in the rice wine and cancelling the bitterness.   ~  9/10

 




 

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Japanese Asari Clams in Sake soup - あさりの酒蒸し
Using the more expensive imported Asari,  this was for 2 persons but a large serving size.   It has a lot of sweetness from the clams and the sake,  although personally I prefer even more sake and clams flavour.   Can’t complain at this price.   ~  7/10



 

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Home-made Pumpkin Croquette - 自家製かぼちゃコロッケ
This was quite loose but really sweet.   One of our favorite courses and it has some minced meat inside.  ~  8/10

 




 

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Salt-grilled Ayu fish -  鮎の塩焼き
This is a must do around this time of the year.  Here it was grilled a bit too salty to my liking,  but the meat remained moist inside and sweet.   Again you get 1 fish for each person.   No need to share even at this price.  Amazing… !   ~  7/10







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蓼酢 – Tadesu
For the above Ayu fish to dip into,  its based on the same plant diet that the fish eats itself on a daily basis,  which lends it the slight melon flavour.




 

 

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Grilled Beef and Kimchi,  and Japanese Nagasu Chicken with Miso - 
長洲鶏の味噌串焼き,  牛肉のキムチ串焼き
I think the caramelization today was a bit weak,  which means it was more boiled like.  However the chicken meat was tender but I prefer them wth skin-on for flavour.   Like the combination of beef and kimchi,  but again,  think the crust could be better darkened.   ~  6/10



 

 

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Avocado Tempura - アボカド天麩羅
Interesting to see this and it was fun to eat,  also working well with the Sake.  It brought out a real sweetness.   Topped with chili strands.   ~  8/10




 

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Yamaimo and Tuna Maguro-zuke Don -  山芋とマグロの漬け丼
The tuna was just marinated but not overly so,  it’s a good finish with the slimey grated yamaimo  ~ 8/10







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Bill for 4,  with 2 x 720ml Sake Bottles included -
$2,244 for 4 people and most dishes above were individual portions too. 
Really good bargain and this Dinner Course changes every month with a different theme.   Really Bang for Your Buck if you ask me.   Only $565 a person if my maths is right with enough sake to make you dizzy. 

 

 

 

Price:  $980 for 2 Persons including Sake  (remember to pre-booked the table!)
Food:  ♕♕♕♕


Address: 銅鑼灣駱克道491-499號京都廣場9樓
9th Floor Kyoto Plaza,  491-499 Lockhart Road,  Causeway Bay,  Hong Kong
Ph:  2892 8899

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Senryo 千両 – New Seasonal Menu

 Senryo is the best sushi train shop in Hong Kong,  and if you have to compare,  it will rival and even beat most sushi train shops in Japan.   At the end of the day it all comes down to the pricing policy.   Sure,  in Japan you see a lot of shops selling sushi platters with rice made by machines at only 105 to 120 Yen,  but Senryo Hong Kong might be slightly pricier,  but it’s main advantage has always been about a high rate of turn-over.   In this aspect it even beats many dedicated sushi shops in town.

 

 

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Japanese Whisky.  Nikka Taketsuru 12 Years -
Senryo Hong Kong,  is currently a Whisky Bar slash Sushi Bar concept.  Here is a glass of whisky by  the founding father of Japanese Whisky in Japan.


 


 

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Lotus Root with Fish Paste,   Egg Tamogoyaki,  Grilled Squids -
The lotus root was to me a little too raw crunchy,  especially compared to a typical hasami-age similar item.   The Egg Omelette in Senryo has always been pretty decent fresh and warmed up properly for a sushi train setting,  even impressive in the whole Sushi shop context.  The grilled squids were a little dry for me.  Overall,  I already knew the Eggs will be good from my weekly visits.   Somehow I expected the Lotus Roots to be less raw personally,  though the sauce and filling was good.  ~  6/10

 


 

 

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Sake Pairing with Tonight’s food –
Hatsumago “Spring” sake.  I am not a sake person by default,  but can tell it’s definitely a fresh batch from the taste and it’s Spring limited.   Notes of dried pear,  alcohol and obviously rice.  Never understood sake terminology personally..  Tastes like Vodka with rice taste to me as is expected!  ~  7/10


 


 

 

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Sashimi Platter 6 Ways -
Kinmedai,  Maguro Tuna,  Shima aji,  Hamachi,  Salmon,  Botan ebi prawns.  All of these were decently fresh and crunchy,  sliced acceptably well for a sushi train shop.  In fact I find these better tasting than so many dedicated sushi shops in HK.  Senryo has an advantage of having higher turnover rates and most fishes perform closer to their peak form.   ~  8/10



 

 

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Grapefruit Sour - グレープフルーツサワ
It can do with more concentrated grapefruit taste and also the shochu base. This pink grapefruit is not the same as yuzu by the way,  for some reason,  it becomes mis-interpreted from Japanese to English or Chinese translation.   This is more like the French pamplemousse..   As it is it’s too weak for me  ~  5.5/10


 


 

 

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Taraba Crab,  Izaki fish,  Katsuo,  Hotate Scallop,  and Mebaru -
I liked them all,  it was fresh and had the appropriate taste expected.  They might not explode in your face like when you eat them in Japan itself  but it is pretty close considering the flight and preparation time is at least 5-6 hours more on top in Hong Kong.  Again better than many many Japanese sushi shops and it’s cheaper here.  Hence Senryo is one of my favourite lunch or dinner spots on a weekly basis.   ~  8/10

 



 

 

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More Sake for Food Pairing -


 


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Kagoshima A5 Wagyu -
Actually this is one of the best Wagyu bargains in town.  It is grilled crispy outside and it has both a meatiness and oily taste,  and for just around $200,  it cannot be missed.  I have had this so many times and it still brings a smile to my face.  ~  8/10




 

 

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More Sake Pairing -
This sake’s name sounds the same as a rice grain in Japan,  but they are unrelated in nature.  I liked this the best for the night personally,  it had a pear aroma and an elegant lasting finish from fruits to rice taste.  ~  8/10



 


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Grilled Kurobuta Pork -
It was a bit over-cooked for me.  Some pieces were more moist,  some pieces a bit too dry.   ~  6/10

 





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Stewed Akamutsu,  or also known as Nodoguro Black Throat -
This was quite fatty as expected since it is known as a white toro.  The sauce and the daikon pieces were well done.  The fish cheek was sensational for me, but the fish skin was surprisingly thick and gelatinous too.  ~  7.5/10

 






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Fried Prawns and Fish -
The katsu fries were done with expertise and definitely with good panko,  although this looked great in theory,  it only came with a Mayo dip.   The mayo dip for a furai dish in Japan is only for the side salad,  the center component of the seafood should be accompanied by a tartare sauce to be more totally accurate.   ~  7/10

 



 


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Another Spring Sake -
This time with gold leaf within.

 

 



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Hokkigai Shellfish,  Akagai,  also Hotate Scallop Sushi -
The hotate was really sweet and huge just like the above sashimi.  I personally thought the Akagai was a bit dry,  but the Hokkigai fared better as it was bounciful fresh and reflective in it’s shine at least.   Not bad for a sushi train shop right?   ~  7/10


 




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Tofu with Katsuo shavings and Seaweed -
This was pretty decent.  Don’t expect an abundance of soy bean taste,  but it was definitely detectable at least.  ~  6.9/10







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Senryo -
One of my favourite sushi to go places.   Not because it is cheap,  but because the amount of turn-over ensures most items are fresh enough.  But don’t expect it to be Sushi Jiro quality with the rice and slicing technique,  let’s be realistic.

 

 

 

 

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Chocolate Mousse Cake -
This was surprisingly very good and strong in Dark Chocolate taste.  The centre was more like an ice-cream cake.   This is not a surprise as desserts at Senryo have always punched above it’s weight class.  This was also no exception.  Even impressive to me.  ~  9/10

 

 


 

Price: HKD $250 – $300  Per Person.  (This Particular Meal was by Invitation by Senryo HK)
Ease of Access:  3/5
Food:  ♕♕♕ 1/2 to ♕♕♕♕ 1/2

Address: 尖沙咀彌敦道19-21號九龍酒店B3層B3-01號店
Shop B3-01, B3/F., The Kowloon Hotel, 19-21 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
Ph:  2367 9368

Monday, April 28, 2014

Okinawa Buffet at The Greenery II, Royal Garden Hotel

  There are many Buffet Restaurants in Hong Kong,  some are rather mediocre,  some are more upper end but then charges accordingly.    As someone who doesn’t eat too much in one session,  personally speaking after trying many of them,   a clearer image is starting to emerge and a few clearly stand out from a Value point of view.  Namely here at The Greenery (Review I),  Mandarin Oriental’s Clipper Lounge and the aforementioned Café Express review.   Mr Steak a la minute is also a good venue if you are after unlimited Wagyu and freshly shucked Oysters and their occasional Sea urchins.   If you can think of any other options outside of these 4,  feel free to leave a comment beneath for me to explore too..! 

 

 

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Okinawa Hata Sea Grouper fish -
They currently offer an Japanese Okinawa themed buffet together with the Okinawa Tourism Board,  until middle of May 2014.   You can also experience it under the same Hotel Group’s INA and Inagiku 稲菊 restaurants. 






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Free flow Juices - 
With Okinawa Shikuwasa lime juice with Honey. 
They are serious with the Okinawan theme.  1st time I saw this unique Calamsansi-like juice in Hong Kong,  but which tastes more sour and kumquat like.

 

 



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Sashimi and Sushi section -
It’s well known that they provide good and fresh options here. 

 

 



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Hamachi,  Salmon and Ika Calamari Sashimi -
They have a few more on offer,  but this was a friend’s plate.


 




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Flame-grilled Aburi Sushi -  Flounder Engawa,  Prawns and Salmon
The rice was too big for me.   At least they offered something unique in a Buffet setting.

 

 

 

 

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Blue Swimmer Crabs -

 

 

 

 

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Okinawa Chanpuru - Fried Eggs with Bitter melon.  Also Pork Knuckles & Mozuku seaweed.
This fits in with the Okinawa theme this month.  I couldn’t find much tofu however and the eggs can be cooked slightly more runnier to me, but the bitter melon flavour was strong and sweet. ~ 6.9/10


 

 

 

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Okinawa Purple Sweet Potato Mont Blanc -
Piped just the way we found in Okinawa.   This could have a stronger sweet potato taste for me.   ~  6.9/10

 

 

 


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Apricot Tart -
This was so pretty and baked well.   I had a bite and it was definitely spot-on.  If you have quota,  you can eat the whole thing.  I would too if I can!!  ~  9/10

 




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Okinawa Black Sugar Pork Ribs -
Pretty tender and flavorful from the darken caramlized coating.   ~  8/10

 

 

 

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Beef Brisket with Okinawa Daikon radish -
I wanted to try this but I had no quota left.  But was told this was really sweet.

 




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Yakitori Grill Section -
I have had this before.   But personally,  I think most grill sticks look a bit dry to my liking,  may be it could do with more caramelized sauce glazing?     But good to find in a buffet setting of course.

 

 

 

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Roast Pork,  Char Siu, Chicken,  and Goose Section -
Pretty pro for a Buffet again.  I didn’t touch it much this time,  as for some reason,  the roast items looked a bit drier than in the past for me.  But the chicken was still decent.. 

 

 


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We already know what we are after here in the Roast section -
Their Chicken Rice is very famous and I have to agree.  The rice especially is fluffy,  full of fragrance.  Apparently this was an adopted recipe from Singapore Mandarin Oriental’s Chatterbox,  when they previously did a cross-over event .   This is actually better than Chatterbox nowadays.    ~  8/10


 

 

 

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Seafood Platter with Unlimited Crab Legs and Crawfish -
Many Hotel restaurants provide there nowadays,  but it depends on how well they are boiled or defrosted from the ships.   The ones here were decent and not too salty-briny, and plump enough.   ~  7/10

 

 

 

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Shisha from Okinawa says hi !
It’s not the fruit flavoured shisha pipes either.  This is their name in Japanese.

 


 

 

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One of the Best Roasted Prime Ribs Beef in town -
This is cooked with USA 1855 Beef,  one of their signature items here.  It is flavorful and tender as always,  so soft but inundated with oil and meaty taste.  A lot of buffet restaurants offer a similar item,  but this one has always been the measuring stick for me.  And again it performed tonight.  Definitely an Encore item.   ~  9/10

 

 




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Chicken Tikka Masala -
This was cooked really well and with depth.  It actually beats many other more famous hotel versions in town.   We were so happy to see this.   On the other hand,  the Naan bread was too flat and not burnt enough.   ~  8/10


 





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Okinawa Sea Grapes “Umi Budo” with Crab Meat Salad -
I like the appeal of this,  but the amount of Sea Grapes they give to you,  granted it’s a buffet restaurant,  is miniscule.   I guess I can request for more sea grapes privately?   They are so cheap in Okinawa so I expected more somehow!   ~  6/10








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Okinawa AGU Pork and US Beef Slices -
Available here unlimited. 

 

 

 

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Also other Seafood and the Final Pork Noodles  -
It really is good value for money.   The base broth made similar to a Tan Tan noodles with sesame was excellent.  ~  9/10

 

 

 

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Gigantic Fried Hiroshima Oysters -
So lovely and unexpected.   ~  8/10

 

 

 

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Bread Basket with toaster on side -
The breads here are good,  don’t miss out on the Grissini.  Which is one of the best versions in town even if served inside a Buffet. 



 

 

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Spring Sweet Potato Udon Noodles and Bitter melon Udon -

 

 

 

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Haagen Dazs Ice Cream -
I need some in this weather!

 

 

 

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Bread & Butter Pudding -


 

 

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Dessert Section -
Royal Garden hotel is famous for their pastries and desserts, starting from the Tony Wong period. Here it trickles down to their Buffet Restaurant.  It’s one of the most professional dessert counters in town definitely.


 




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Pandan Leave Crepe with Bananas,  and Mango Sorbet with Vanilla Ice Cream -
With slivers of almonds.  Just the way I like it and this is also one of their signature desserts here.   ~ 8/10

 

 

 


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So many Thoughtful desserts with Okinawa Produce in mind -
Posting the review slightly late,  but this would still be available until middle of May 2014. 



 

 

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The Hotel Space above the Buffet area -
I personally still think The Greenery is one of the best Value for Money buffets in town and they always come up with thoughtful recipes.   Usually we go to download a Discount Coupon from openrice.com,  which saves you around 25% 

 

 

 

Price:  $528 Per Person + 10%  (Download 25% Discount Voucher from openrice.com)
Dinner:  ♕♕♕♕ to ♕♕♕♕♕

Address: 尖沙咀麼地道69號帝苑酒店3樓
3rd Floor,  Royal Garden Hotel,  Mody Road,  Tsim Sha Tsui East,  Hong Kong.
Ph: +852  2733 2030

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