The sushi bar. Hard not to notice the low and exposed ceiling:
Wanya is located on the mezzanine level of the building, but to enter it, you have to first go up the escalator to the first floor then down some stairs, which gave the impression of going down to the basement level. The lack of windows and low ceiling inside the restaurant further accentuated that illusion, and this may not be the best place for a claustrophobic person. Service was a bit slapdash, but I get the feeling that the waitstaff have to be that way for that restaurant to run efficiently. The restaurant's main attraction is their all-you-can-order sushi and sashimi, and most other diners were there for this so-called buffet. The lunch menu offered an early bird discount of 30% if the bill is paid before 12:45pm, which suited us fine as we were there before 12pm and quick is best when eating out with a toddler. There were quite a few lunch sets on offer, and we could choose from raw seafood to tempura to grilled items. The manager informed me that some of their food is outsourced, which meant that nothing can be deemed safe for our son to eat due to his multiple food allergies. It's a good thing I always bring extra food for him, just in case.
Hubby's Unagi (Grilled Eel) Lunch Set included unadon, conch sashimi, chawanmushi (steamed egg custard), miso soup and salad. The chawanmushi was pretty good!
The unadon, close up. The flavour was good, but the texture of the unagi wasn't great, like it had been reheated (another outsourced item?). Something like this is far better when freshly grilled:
The conch sashimi from hubby's lunch set, which was quite flavourless and even I think it needed soy sauce (I prefer eating my sushi and sashimi without soy sauce):
My Salmon Sashimi Lunch Set, which included a bowl of sashimi items on sushi rice, grilled chicken wings, salad and teapot soup (not in picture because it arrived later). I loved the sesame dressing on the salad:
The bowl of sliced salmon, ikura (salmon roe), ama-ebi (sweet shrimp), tamagoyaki (sweet egg omelette) and uni (sea urchin). All the items were surprisingly not too bad, but I wished that the uni was much fresher than it was. The sushi rice underneath was a little hard and no longer sticky:
The grilled chicken wing was stuffed with surimi, which was an unexpected surprise as it was not indicated on the menu that it was stuffed chicken wing:
The teapot soup was a bit of a novelty for me...
...but fishing out the slippery items soon became tiresome. It was tasty, but I could detect MSG:
All in all, it wasn't a bad experience, but I wouldn't give any of the raw seafood to my 3-year-old (this wasn't an issue at Inagiku or Zuma). Lunch came to under HK$300 (after the 30% early bird discount), and honestly I wouldn't pay more than that for this quality. There are definitely much better (but pricier) Japanese food out there, and I think we'll just have to limit ourselves to occasionally indulge in the more expensive places.
Wanya Japanese Restaurant
Mezzanine Floor, New World Tower,
16-18 Queen's Road
Central, Hong Kong
Tel. +85 2 2521 8807