Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Honshin Kushiyaki Restaurant


This was an unplanned visit. After a late night at the office, I went for a quick walk to try to find some food. One place that I passed was some place called Honshin, which didn't really stand out to me when I looked at the menu (it looked like a boring version of Ichiban Tei). So I kept walking, but then, lo and behold, these guys had a sister restaurant next door specializing in kushiyaki. And they were open until 11 PM. I wasn't quite leaping at it just yet, but Saravana Bhavan down the street looked closed, so I figured that I'd try this place out (140 Robinson Road #02-00, 6220-9989) just to keep things easy. When I went in, another surprise awaited: hey - it's the same guy from Kushigin and Nanbantei! Geez - I guess the supply of yakitori chefs in this town is very limited (it's also a bit scary that I seem to have hit up enough of these places that I'm running into the same chef at different spots).

Kawaebi KaraageUnfortunately, that's about where the similarities ended, as I'm pretty sure that these are completely different owners. I ordered my usual favorites, but some of which deviated a bit from the norm here, such as the hiyayakko that oddly lacked the usual negi, bonito flakes, and ginger (but instead was covered by a Japanese salad). The kawaebi karaage were also larger than I'd like, thus making it a bit difficult to eat when the antennae and claws were so long that one couldn't just easily pop these things in one's mouth. Well, most of these little gripes were more about the "kitchen" food from the back. There wasn't that much to pick on for the grilled items (and he even gave me a couple freebies...nice), although it seemed that the quality of the ingredients could be even better if they really pushed it.

So what's the verdict? It was definitely a notch or two down from Nanbantei, which in and of itself had already slipped a notch or two down from the neighborhood of Kushigin or Kazu. But despite that, this place could still hold itself a tad above the "average" bar. Is it enough for me to get cravings for this place? No. But if I'm out in this area again after hours, then I suppose it might pop up on the consideration list.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Whilst I didn't enter the Kushiyaki sister restaurant, I did go to the main one below - and yes, the menu looks pretty crap, but make no mistake - their dinner buffet consists of seafood flown from the fish markets of Japan every other day fresh.

The dinner buffet (which is ala carte, mind you) also offers alot of the Kushiyaki stuff, and will set you back $36-37 nett ($31.80++).

It doesn't have the most fantastic atmosphere, and also has some of the worst toilets for restaurants of this calibre, but Japanese salarymen (Googled it before I went - twice) regularly come here every week because it's that good, and at an extremely decent price. We ate about $230+ going by the menu prices for $76 (two people).

Love their Ika sashimi. Heck, all their seafood rocks, the tuna's better than the one they serve at the Ritz garden cafe during lunch as well.