Ronin

Ronin
8 On Wo Lane
Central
Hong Kong

Ronin is easily one of those restaurants that pops up as a popular, must-try Hong Kong restaurant for the modern generation.  Unlike Yung Kee, it doesn’t have a long history and tradition.  The place is relatively new, but has garnered quite a popularity in a short time.  The place does not serve Chinese food, but rather Japanese izakaya-ish/tapas-ish fare.  It’s definitely a popular spot for the large expat population in Hong Kong, 3SB included.  He gave it his seal of approval so I knew it had to be good.

The place is well stocked with a large selection of whiskey, in true Japanese fashion.  We opted for the omakase at $130/pp because the menu was far too overwhelming for noobs like us.  Plus, The Annoyer was catching up with and I was getting to know ***. DSC00957

Charred Eggplant marinated in dashi
The amuse was lightly smoky and delightfully savory yet light.  I always wonder how people like eggplant when its quite a mushy thing.  I love it!DSC00958

Shigoku Oyster mozuku, apple, ginger vinaigrette
Daniel Sorlut Oyster red shiso granite, sudachi
The oysters were really spot on.  The unique toppings didn’t overpower the light brininess of these oceanic treasures.  The Annoyer was quite pleased.DSC00961

(from left moving clockwise)
Mejina rudder fish sashimi, daikon, ponzu, yuzu kosho
Kanapachi amberjack, sashimi, negi, soy
Shima Aji striped jack sashimi, wasabi, soy
Akagai arkshell clam sashimi, kinome, cucumber, miso
The raw selection for our second course only got more delicious.  Everything was really spot on and hard to fault for anything really.  My favorite was the kanapachi.  The negi or Welsh onion provided wonderful savoriness with the soy sauce.  The shima aji were thick delicious slices of fresh clean tasting fish.  I was very impressed.  YUMS!
DSC00963

Uni fresh nori, aonori panko
I was in uni heaven.  I never had uni with seasoned panko and nori like this, but it was spectacular.  SOO YUMS!!!  Definitely adding this to my “best eats of my life” list.DSC00967

Hamachi yellowtail sashimi, shitake mushrooms, mizuna, negi soy
Wow, they just kept up with the culinary awesomeness with this one.  Everything worked in harmony and that negi soy made another appearance.  The Annoyer was loving all the sashimi.  YUMS!DSC00970

Grilled Isaki shio koji, sudachi
The lightly charred fish represented the end to the cold courses.  With a squeeze of sudachi, it was a delicious and simple treat.DSC00973

Black Pilsner Battered Smoked Amadai black sugar kewpie
The preparation reminded me of “fish & chips.”  A slightly sweet mayo was served alongside the fried fish as well as a shot glass of the same black pilsner used in the batter.  Crispy on the outside and perfectly fried.  Not a beer fan, so I can’t say I enjoyed the dark beer.DSC00977DSC00978

Anago Tempura tensu, sansho salt
Oh hello, another fried fish.  Tempura batter differentiated this dish from the last.  DSC00979

I really enjoyed the different accompaniments with the seasoned salt and the soy based dipping sauce.DSC00980

Sea Bream Karaage pickled jalapeño tosazu
Hmm, more fried fish?  We were a little fried-fished out by this point.  Granted it was different being karaage style.  I liked the beer battered fish the best.DSC00982

Quail orange, sansho pepper
We had to tell the chef to wind things down.  Somehow, he thought it would be a good idea to give us ANOTHER fried item.  It was a tender and moist quail, and quite meaty for quail, but it was hard to enjoy after eating 3 fried dishes previously.  Plus I was really full.DSC00984

Ronin had an extremely strong start with the cold dishes.  They were all prepared in unique and contrasting ways.  We really loved it all.  Unfortunately, the hot dishes were all fried and kind of one note.  Stand alone, each hot dish was pretty good, but in the context of an omakase it really brought the whole experience down.  I would still come back to Ronin because I can tell they are really doing something delicious here.  I might pass on the omakase though.

10 – You NEED to eat here
9 – Awesome
8 – Very good
7 – Good
6 – OK
5 – Average
4 – Not bad
3 – Not good
2 – Terrible
1 – Do NOT eat here

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