Cheapskate strikes again! Took advantage of the online coupons. The 9-course would cost $242 but with the coupon, only $68!
“Omakase” means “it’s up to you,” which means the chef will pick and choose for you after knowing your likes, dislikes, and allergies. We saw Chef Thomas Kok at the restaurant; he is one of the pioneers of bringing Jap food to Singapore in 1980s. Voted as best restaurant in 2009, I know why it hasn’t been picked for 2010 and 2011 – for what reasons, read on.
The discount coupon website said that the food is safe (from radiation), but the restaurant claims to fly the food in from Tsujiki market, which is near the radiation site. A little confusing. Die lah, what if I get cancer?
The decor is simple and elegant, dark tables and chairs, with dimmed lighting, creating a zen feel to the place. I feel that the tables are too large, prevent intimate conversations, and knowing this, 14K very sweetly asked if I wanted him to sit beside me.
Now the food:
Complimentary stewed shredded radish and carrots. Eh, no taste.
First dish. Salad. Vegetables were fresh, but I thought the dressing was too heavy, oily and too vinegary.
Starter: tamago (egg), tofu with roe in a sauce that tastes like salted egg, deep fried salmon skin. The egg and salmon skin failed to impress, bland. I threw the skin in the salad to provide a more layered taste. Didn’t like the texture of the tofu, rather hard, but the sauce was delicious.
Third dish: sashimi, including tuna, salmon, swordfish and yellowtail. Not the freshest I have eaten.
Cod fish on salty roe sauce. Overly oily. The sauce didn’t blend with or into the fish.
Tempura scallops. Oily, hard scallops. I like my men hard, but my scallops tender.
Wagyu beef in foie gras sauce. Best dish. We love it. The beef was tender and soft and the foie gras covered the beefy taste, although it didn’t penetrate into the meat. (usually it is the meat who does the penetrating, so I forgive foie gras for lack of practice.)
Tea Soup. Squeeze the lime in the soup and pour in cup to drink. Blah. Bland.
Assorted sushi. If you notice this blog, I haven’t been eating sushi for the longest time. That’s because in May 2010, I ate at the most amazing omakase-styled sushi restaurant, Yasuda. I described it to my friends as I ate the sushi, I felt like I was in the countryside with a wide open field of tall grass and lalang, and a breeze blew, and the grass swayed. Good sushi, you shouldn’t dip in soy sauce or wasabi at all. Unfortunately, Chef Kok couldn’t achieve what Chef Yasuda did. It was very disappointing. T he restaurant is named Hokkaido Sushi Restaurant. Why is the wagyu beef better than the sushi? When I go to Sakae, I expect crappy sushi, so that’s fine. But here, I had high expectations after all the good reviews. The ingredients were fresher than Sakae, but the sushi are basically the same.
Homemade green tea ice cream. Too sweet for me.
14K and I thought although the service was excellent, the dishes were served up too quickly. Usually in a classy restaurant, you take 2-3 hours to eat the meal but here, they served us the dishes when we hadn’t even finished the last dish. You would expect such a quiet place to be romantic, but the restaurant decor and the attentive service made it difficult to be romantic.
Overall, the food was average to sad, the ambience and service excellent, but I wouldn’t pay $242 for a meal like this.
Hokkaido Sushi Restaurant
81 Anson Road,
t: 6500 6121
11.30am – 3pm
Rating: 3.381/5 stars