Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kuriya Penthouse, Singapore - Sexy Yet Traditional

Tuesday, July 24, 2012
kuriya penthouse
Kuriya Penthouse
Rooftop Dining

A couple of weeks ago, M and I found a really good reason to visit Kuriya Penthouse - they were running a June promotion dinner set for $78 (the Kuriya dinner course goes for $98, and the July course is a hefty $150). In case you haven't heard, chef Yoshihiko Koezuka who helms the kitchen had the honour of whipping up dinner for Emperor Hirohito and Empress Nagako during his time at Hotel New Omi in Japan. Now that's something not every chef has on their resume. As you can expect, I was very excited about dinner...

Sesame Tofu, Kuriya Penthouse
Sesame Tofu, Salmon with Mango Puree, Kuriya Penthouse
Sesame Tofu, Fish with Capsicum, Mango Pureé with Salmon

I wasn't disappointed. It was a remarkable dining experience - great views, impeccable service and excellently prepared food. I really enjoyed the sesame tofu, its delicate custard texture, the pang of wasabi that whips itself around the top of your nose for a second, before meshing with the shoyu and grated daikon into something quite special. The slice of salmon sashimi drizzled with mango pureé was a sure crowd pleaser. I had low expectations for the fried fish with capsicum since fried food served chilled seemed like such a taboo, but even that turned out to be surprisingly tasty and wonderfully seasoned.

Sashimi platter, Kuriya Penthouse
Sashimi platter, Kuriya PenthouseBeef Tenderloin Cubes, Kuriya Penthouse
Sashimi platter, $22, Beef Tenderloin Cubes

Since we weren't looking to stuff ourselves that night, we ordered just one dinner set and an additional sashimi platter to share, with the intention of ordering more if that wasn't enough - surprisingly enough, we didn't need to (then again, we've gotten into a habit of light dinners these days). The sashimi platter was definitely one of the highlights of our meal. I absolutely loved how sweet and fresh everything tasted - at just $22 to boot. Oh how I adore sweet shrimp sashimi, delicious from the head down to the teeny tail. The beef tenderloin cubes tasted fantastic too, though it was served lukewarm. Still, beef this juicy and tasty - how could anyone resist?

Breaded Fish, Kuriya Penthouse
Assorted Sushi, Kuriya Penthouse
Breaded Fish, Assorted Sushi

I am always a little skeptical when it comes to fried fish fillets. Too often, they are either processed food or a cheap way to mask stinky fillets. Here, both the crumbs and snow-white fillet are as fresh as can be. I am sold. The sushi platter was another highlight. Each of the nigiri sushi left me wanting more, and the single california maki simply wasn't enough. I loved the sweet and lightly firm tamago, too.

Assorted Sushi, Kuriya PenthouseMeat Ball and Vegetables Hot Pot, Kuriya Penthouse
Meat Ball and Vegetables Hot Pot, Kuriya Penthouse
Assorted Sushi, Meat Ball and Vegetables Hot Pot

The next dish, an unassuming meat ball and vegetables hot pot, caught us off guard and totally won us over. The broth tasted ordinary enough, until we added the yuzu paste provided on the side, which transformed the broth into something truly remarkable - at once refreshing and lightly spicy. So darn good. Even the meat ball was something - surprisingly soft and extremely tasty.

Kuriya Penthouse
Kuriya PenthouseMatcha Ice Cream with Fruits, Kuriya Penthouse
Matcha Ice-Cream with Fruits

Our last course was a simple but effective one. Excellent matcha ice-cream paired with fruits and azuki beans. So easy, but as with everything we had earlier, so good. The food at Kuriya Penthouse is more traditional than inventive, sporting clean flavours with just the right dose of complexities. I crave the good and familiar more frequently than I used to think. I mean, I can only consume foie gras and wagyu so often, you know, but I won't hesitate to consume anything on this menu on a daily basis. This meal left me completely contented and happy. Though the price tag is pretty hefty. The set menu changes every month, but I'm not sure I'll be able to keep up!

Kuriya Penthouse
181 Orchard Road, #12-02 Orchard Central, Singapore
Tel: +65 6509 4222

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