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KAIYŌ, a Japanese restaurant with a wide selection of dishes ranging from sushi, to shabu-shabu, to grilled skewers, makes up one half of Gaia Group's dining portfolio at trendy K11 MUSEA. It sits side by side to VELO, an Italian restaurant also owned by the restaurant group. In Japanese, the name KAIYŌ translates to “ocean”, so it’s no surprise that the new spring menu features some of the freshest catches from Japan.
A mouth-watering way to begin our tasting, the KAIYŌ roll ($360), adorned with premium ingredients the likes of creamy sea urchin, negitoro, salmon roe and caviar, made for giant, indulgent mouthfuls. The roll pieces were so huge, and stacked so high with seafood, that it was impossible to gulp each down in one bite. We still haven’t figured out how to elegantly eat this roll, but each bite was definitely deliciously worthwhile.
The deluxe sashimi platter ($638) features seven kinds of fresh seafood, varying depending on the season. Highlights for us were the sweet prawn and buttery toro.
A treasure trove of deliciousness, the salmon roe treasure ($248) comes in a wooden sake cup overflowing with ruby spheres of ikura. It reminded us of a mini salmon roe don, with the bottom a bed of brined rice.
Grilled Japanese threadfin ($288), a dish that always reminds us of après-ski in Hokkaido, was well seasoned with beautiful caramelisation. The whole fish is marinated in sake and salt for 90 minutes, before being hung overnight to air-dry for an extra-concentrated flavour. We wished there had been a bowl of rice to accompany it, as the rich, oily fish is on the very savoury side.
The main event was the premium lobster seafood shabu-shabu ($698), showcasing prawns, scallops, clams and, of course, lobster. The set also comes with fresh greens, mushrooms, tofu, fish balls, dumplings and udon. We added on a rich Hokkaido fish maw soup (+$68). An unexpected highlight was the huge clams, which were succulent and full of umami juices. Please note that the platter pictured above is of two orders of the shabu-shabu set.
This lobster claw was definitely worth cracking into!
When we read “fruit sorbet” on the menu, we were expecting scooped balls served in a bowl, not the massive sorbet monster served in frozen fruit that greeted us. The house-made pineapple sorbet ($88) is presented inside an entire halved pineapple.
The more demure peach sorbet ($78) was packed with white peach aroma, subtle and fragrant.
KAIYŌ is a stylish Japanese restaurant that suits every palate. It’s particularly great for those who want to try a little bit of everything. Although we focused on the seafood offerings at this tasting, the extensive menu will satisfy any Japanese food craving,
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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