The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Saturday, 24 November 2007

Hawai'ian @ Roy's, Tokyo

I must admit that when Rob suggested we try Roy Yamaguchi's Hawaiian-fusion restaurant located in Roppongi Hills, I wasn't exactly jumping at the chance. The first two things that came to mind about Hawaiian food were spam and pineapple pieces (y'know, pizza with "Hawaiian" toppings?) - not exactly gourmet ingredients right?). Rob previously had the opportunity to eat at one of Roy's restaurants in New York City for dinner with his collegues, and he raved about it. Naturally, he wanted me to try the food too. I knew of Roy Yamaguchi's fame and reputation, so I knew that the food would at least be pretty good. With that in mind, we walked into the restaurant for lunch on Sunday afternoon.

Roy's Tokyo Bar and Grill offers a brunch deal for 3500yen per person, and you could choose each course from a pretty good selection. I actually expected it to be more pricey, given the chef's celebrity fame and the restaurant's location in Roppongi Hills. We were seated by the window, and we had a lovely view of the Hills and Tokyo tower in he distance. Service was excellent and absolutely faultless. The waiter assigned to us was vey friendly and helpful, and he spoke great English. He was even gracious enough to print a copy of the menu for me! After dining in NYC for two months, we felt somewhat awkward not tipping, especially since service and food were very good (of a higher calibre than perhaps 80% of the restaurants we dined in NYC). However, we were also aware that tipping in Japan may be taken offensively (we heard stories) so we stayed on the cautious side. Let's just say that we would have been more than happy to tip for the service and food.

We were first served our respective juices (included in the price) and shortly after with bread and muffin. Rob selected a kabocha (sweet yummy Japanese pumpkin) muffin and it was good enough to warrant a mention and a photo!

For appetiser, I went with Roy's Style Ahi Poke with Fresh Mango and Avocado. The poke was similar to salsa, except it was made with cubed fish. It was quite tasty: minimally dressed, accompanied with mango and avocado and topped with a smattering of flying fish roe, and I could detect a hint of sesame oil - all of which went very nicely with the raw ahi cubes. Rob chose the Kahana Style Pork and Shrimp Spring Roll with Black Bean Mango Chilli Sauce. Compared to the mild-tasting ahi poke, the spring rolls gave a strong kick to the tastebuds, in a nice way. The spring roll was crispy and delicious and perfectly accompanied with the chilli sauce.

My ahi poke and Rob's spring roll:

Prior to the main course, we had some lovely fruit salad which doubled well as a palate cleanser. Fresh raspberries, blueberries, pineapple and melon with a whip of fresh cream - it was just delightful!

I chose the Catch of the Day Special Dish for my main course, which was mahi-mahi with black soy bean sauce. The fish was perfectly cooked, juicy and tender - ah, the Japanese sure know how to cook seafood! By the way, I've never had perfectly cooked fish or seafood at any restaurant outside of Japan. The black bean sauce was very bold and salty, which I felt was a bit too strong for fish. It would be perfect for something like steak. Thankfully the sauce wasn't drowning the fish, but rather was left around the rim of the plate to leave the diner the option to use the sauce as desired. Rob's choice was Grilled Black Tiger Shrimp and Scallops with Chorizo Clam Chowder Sauce. The prawns were crispy and delicious, and it was good to eat scallops that haven't been overcooked until dry and rubbery. The sauce was rich and creamy, which Rob happily sopped up.

Catch of the day (mahi mahi); and grilled prawns and scallops:

Then it was dessert time! We could choose from five types and I selected the Mango Pudding while Rob went with the Raspberry Mousse. Both were okay, somewhat on the too-sweet and rich side for my tastebuds.

Mango pudding and raspberry mousse:

It was a nice date, and we had a great time. It seems like it has been quite awhile since we had time to enjoy ourselves, being busy with moving and furnishing our new apartment and me starting a new job. Service at Roy's was impeccable, food was wonderful and it was a much-needed quality time with my hubby.

No comments:

Post a Comment