Omakase meals are always expensive but then I heard about the lunch sets from Sushi Kimura, which start at $120 and go up to an eyewatering $250. Turns out, it’s not what’s in the food that’s so costly, but the origins of everything in Sushi Kimura.
The attention to detail is astounding; the noren fabric dividers hanging in the doorways? They’re made out of 200 year old kimono fabric passed down in Chef Tomoo Kimura‘s family. Even the wood used to make the countertops are from Japan.
But, the food is what makes everything come together. Fresh seafood is flown in from Tsukiji market four times a week, and Chef Kimura only chooses ingredients that are in season so that his food is always of impeccable standard.
I was lucky enough to try the $250 lunch set, so let’s get straight into it.
Starting off with a starter of beancurd skin, dashi jelly, uni and ikura, I already knew the meal would be great. The folds of delicate beancurd skin paired beautifully with the umami dashi jelly. The creamy and sweet sea urchin added a richness to the dish and the salty pearls of ikura exploded with every bite I took.
When the Sashimi Platter was served, I was glad to see that there was a good mix of seafood on the plate. Instead of the standard salmon, tuna or other fishes, I received isaki, baby squid, hokkigai, botan ebi and akagai.
The wasabi was freshly grated in front of me, and wasn’t the typical coloured horseradish served in other Japanese restaurants in Singapore. The seafood was fresh and of extremely high quality; I particularly enjoyed the squid, which was coated in an egg yolk sauce that added a nice smoothness.
Chef Kimura recommends that diners try the sake made with organic rice from the Fukuoka prefecture to pair with the sashimi. Served in a carafe that holds 180ml ($28), it’s light and clean, with a sweet finish. The sake certainly goes well with the fish, and the amount provided is enough for two diners to share over the course of the meal.
Then came the sushi, each made by hand in front of me by Chef Kimura before being presented with a short explanation of the main ingredient. The ones that stood out most to me were the Snapper, Ootoro and the Kyoto Style egg.
The rice vinegar is from a small brewery in Kyoto that has never been exported out before, and made with five times more rice per liter than any other premium vinegars available. As such, the rice that is used for the sushi has a distinct taste that sets it apart from other sushi rice.
The winner of the meal for me, however, is the rice bowl. Made with chopped toro, uni and ikura that is blended together and poured over a small bowl of rice, it was absolutely delicious.
The creaminess and sweetness of the sea urchin, along with the fattiness from the tuna, and the bursts of salty flavour from the ikura balanced each ingredient out, and I finished every last spoonful I could get of the mixture.
As mentioned above, Chef Kimura only chooses the freshest fish available, and that means that everything is seasonality driven. So the menus undergo a big change every three months, with new fishes and ingredients added. One of the dishes that portrayed this seasonality the best was the dessert.
Everything was sakura inspired. The mizu manju, or water dumpling dessert, had an edible sakura flower within, and it was served with a steaming cup of cherry blossom tea. I was told that sakura flowers have to be pickled in salt for an entire year before they can be used. The tea was delicious though, unexpectedly salty and slightly sour despite the sweet aroma.
Expected damage: $120 – $300 per person