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Shikigiku | Fancy tempura with a view

For some reason, I’ve always thought of tempura as a winter dish. But apparently, it’s not really. People enjoy it anytime of the year. That said, I still think tempura is an excellent winter dish because of how comforting it is. And because food babies can be more easily hidden under winter layers. Shikigiku in IFC (enter through the Four Seasons Hotel) recently introduced a few new winter tempura dishes and we went to have a taste.



Shikigiku’s tempura counter is located near the back of the restaurant and seats about a dozen or so. It’s slightly more casual than the rest of the restaurant’s glamorous decor, but it’s great fun watching the chefs fry the food; especially Chef Sakuma who has over 40 years of experience. They have two tempura counter set menus for dinner ($980 or $1280) and two for lunch ($480 or $620). All come with salad, an assortment of seafood and vegetable tempura, a rice set, and dessert.



The ingredients are fresh and the tempura manages to be crispy yet not greasy as you’d expect from a high-end restaurant.


Highlights included:


The shirako. It was my first time having fish sperm and I was pleasantly surprised. The flavour was delicate and the texture was very smooth.



The Japanese cheese wrapped in shiso leaf. A sophisticated take on deep-fried cheese.



The wagyu in shiso leaf. Absolutely melt-in-the-mouth.



The fresh uni on a tempura shiso leaf. The leaf was a bit too thin to handle the generous amount of uni, but I suppose that’s not really a problem…



The sugar-coated tempura chestnut.


Overall, the dishes were very solid. The only things I didn’t love were the tempura egg yolk rice as it tasted bland, and the toro (sashimi, not tempura’d) which was quite fibrous.


Verdict

Shikigiku is a solid option at IFC, especially for a business lunch or dinner. In addition to tempura, they also have kaiseki menus, teppanyaki, sushi, and sashimi. The prices reflect the quality of the food, beautiful Harbour view, and convenient location.


Podium Level 4, ifc mall, 8 Finance Street, Central, 2805 0600


*By invitation for Foodie


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