Sakana No Aji literally translates to “it tastes like fish”, so we walked into the new restaurant by ZS Hospitality Group expecting nothing short of a seafood feast. Part of the group behind popular restaurants such as Lee Lo Mei, Moi Moi, Yakimon and Ying Jee Club, this new Japanese restaurant shares the same address as two of the restaurants at 8 Lyndhurst Terrace.
Executive Chef Chris Leung leads the restaurant with his more than 20 years’ experience in Japanese fine dining, having earned his stripes at Sushi Ta-ke. Although there is an à-la-carte menu, the highlight of the restaurant is really in its omakase menus, which range from $800 to $1,800 per person. We always love a good omakase menu and the surprises the chef has in store.
Our Signature Menu ($1,300) began with a pretty platter of poached shrimp over fig, dressed in a sweet sesame sauce, spongy fish cake and briny salmon roe in yuzu vinaigrette.
We admired the attention to detail in each dish, including this wafer-thin maple leaf carved out of carrot.
The flounder sashimi was sliced into paper-thin sheets and dressed with delicate ponzu jelly and shiso flowers. The raw fish was incredibly fresh, with a slight crunch.
With the sea urchin prepared in the shell with creamy fatty tuna and salmon roe, we liked the contrast between the sweetness of the uni and the saltiness of the roe.
The Pacific saury sashimi was served alongside a subtly tart ponzu dipping sauce. We’re not huge fans of mackerel, but the slices at Sakana No Aji were incredibly fresh and buttery, and the ponzu sauce further balanced the strong flavour of this type of fish.
Crunchy, flash-poached whelk dressed in yuzu juice wowed thanks to its freshness. The sweet, crunchy bounce of each morsel of whelk was simply addictive.
This may be the best way to serve a “tuna sandwich” – two fatty slices of toro sandwiched between crunchy nori and shiso leaf.
Hairy crabmeat with sweet uni and poached quail egg proved to be a delicate tower of umami goodness.
This warm dish of sweet Japanese pumpkin simmered with minced chicken offered us a lusciously glossy broth.
Japanese fruit tomato with plum wine jelly made for the perfect palate cleanser.
There were actually six pieces of sushi served, but we were so absorbed in our meal that we inhaled our food before remembering to take a picture (we’re missing the photo of the Bering sea cockle, a speciality of Okinawa as well as the Edo-mae egg).Clockwise from left: aburi kinmedai (golden-eye snapper) with chive and ume, aburi otoro, seasonal white fish dressed with fish-liver sauce and chive, sweet white shrimp with sea urchin
Poached abalone with rice in abalone-liver sauce looked simple but offered a complex combination of flavours.
This dish was a comforting mushroom broth topped with crispy-skinned barracuda.
Succulent Japanese Yubari king melon capped off a fantastic meal.
We walked into Sakana No Aji with a slight bias because we weren’t sure if a restaurant belonging to such a large group could pull off the type of intricate, delicate techniques required for an authentic omakase experience. We were proven wrong by the delicious, immaculate meal presented by Chef Leung. His creativity and attention to detail can rival any good sushi bar in Tokyo or Kyoto. We will definitely be back for more.
2/F, 8 Lyndhurst Terrace, Central, 2896 6018
This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.
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