Restaurant review: Kitcho Sushi – omakase and kaiseki menus deliver on contrast and taste

Hairy crab and excellent sashimi and sushi among the highlights

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 22 December, 2016, 6:31pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 22 December, 2016, 6:31pm

I shouldn’t have been surprised that I was recognised at Kitcho Sushi: the key staff worked previously at Sushi Kuu (a restaurant I eat at quite frequently) and Sushi Sase (which I’ve only been to once). When I arrived, the manager greeted me by name, rather than the pseudonym I’d booked under.

The restaurant offers a choice of three dinner menus: sushi omakase (appetiser and 16 pieces of sushi, HK$1,080), kaiseki course (appetiser, five pieces of sashimi, grilled, boiled and fried dishes, and six pieces of sushi, HK$1,280) and the omakase (appetiser, seven pieces of sashimi, hairy crab, hot dish, and eight pieces of sushi, HK$1,480). Because cooler weather means crab season, we went for the omakase menu.

The meal started with a varied appetiser selection: Kagoshima black pork roulade with sesame dressing, bean curd skin with tuna, fried Japanese pepper stuffed with shrimp paste, and the tiniest potatoes we’ve ever seen.

The chef specialises in contrast: for several of the sashimi courses, he used the same fish, but in different ways. Hirame, a thin slice with yuzu zest, a thicker, meatier piece with yuzu jelly, and another thick piece that had been lightly seared – were all delicious, and tasted distinctly different. Buri belly came raw, seared and smoked: seared tasted the fattiest and most luxurious, while smoked was the most unusual. Other highlights of the sashimi dishes were the shima-aji (raw and seared), a generous portion of bafu uni with julienned cucumber, and Pacific saury served with shiso leaf.

The hairy crab came next, served warm and topped with a blob (we wanted more) of the creamy male roe. The hot dish of Kagoshima wagyu with fried garlic was slightly overcooked, but still tender.

Of the sushi courses, we loved the kinmadai topped with yuzu, the very fatty sanma, and the aburi toro, which looked just like beef and was just as fatty. Ankimo, cooked with red wine and soy, was too sweet. The savoury courses ended with tender squares of tamago – the hard-to-make version containing shrimp paste and mountain yam, and delicious miso soup.

Kitcho Sushi, 3/F M88, 2-8 Wellington Street, Central, tel: 2884 0388. HK$1,080-HK$1,480 (depending on which menu you choose)