The award-winning chef Hide Yamamoto has served three generations of US presidents, presided as Executive Chef of two Mandarin Oriental hotels around the world, and owns a string of successful restaurants in Japan. From the look of it, his empire continues to expand beyond Japan. Following the success of Hide Yamamoto, his popular flagship restaurant at Marina Bay Sands, Yamamoto has opened a second restaurant — Wagokoro Hide Yamamoto — right in the heart of Robertson Quay.
The 18-seater restaurant serves up Kappo cuisine using only the freshest of ingredients, with most of the produce flown in four times weekly from various parts of Japan. With an open kitchen flanked by a 12-seater counter, guests are able to enjoy a view of the chefs preparing their meal right before their eyes. The restaurant serves up 8-, 9- or 10-course sets, all featuring dishes prepared Kappo-style, which references the traditional Japanese cooking methods of stewing, boiling, and frying.
We tried the eight-course Ayame menu, which begins with the pumpkin mousse with okura walnut. This surprising combination is savoury, smooth and given a slight crunch with the walnuts. Following the mousse, we had the sashimi platter comprising sea bream, toro and kamasu (barracuda). For those allergic to raw seafood, the chef can arrange for another dish to be served.
Unusual but delicious flavour combinations come in the form of Kamo eggplant topped with sea urchin, and black cod sided with truffle edamame. Freshly fried asparagus rolled with pike conger is served with a slightly sweet chili paste and salt mix spiked with spices.
The highlight of the menu is the duck consommé oden served with radish, fish cake, and a half-boiled egg flown in from Japan. Then there was cold soba noodles sided with freshly grated wasabi to provide a balance of heat to the cold noodles. End off the meal with homemade pudding and chewy warabi-mochi coated in brown sugar.
While the dishes can be enjoyed at the 12-seater counter, guests can choose to have a more intimate meal at the private dining area sited away from the main dining area.
Wagokoro Hide Yamamoto. 60 Robertson Quay, #01-04. Tel:6733 6315