Sunday, September 28, 2014

Kellerei Nals Margreid Pinot Grigio Sudtirol 2013

Date of Tasting: 6 July 2014
Wine Type: White
Grape Varieties: 100% Pinot Grigio
Alcohol: 13.5%
Origin: Alto Adige, Italy
Appellation: DOC
Expect to Pay: ~ THB750
Chubby Score: 90/100
Value for money: 7/10
Professional Rating: WS - 88/100

Appearance: lemony yellow
Aroma: mild orange and zesty fruits, white flower floor, and mineral
Palate: almost full on the body and creamy in fact, exhibit layers of citrus notes with peachy flavour as the second tone, rather subtle acidity to balance with some good length

Pretty good table white wine with dry style. This is an enjoyable one either as aperitif or as food wine and should be pleasant for a few years. It did go well with light dishes like non-cream base pasta.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Sushi Kanda @ Thonglor, Bangkok - ซูชิคันดะ @ ซอยทองหล่อ กรุงเทพฯ

Cuisine: Japanese (sushi)
Price: THB1,050 per person for lunch without alcohol (what we paid for)
Visited: 11 August 2014
Food: 5/10
Atmosphere: 6/10
Value for money: 3/10
Services: 5/10
Scale: [1=poor ---- 5=average/standard ---- 10=outstanding/exceptional]

Sushi Kanda is on the 2nd floor of No. 88 complex in Soi Thonglor (between Thonglor 5 and 9) which is pretty close to the famous southern Thai food restaurant "Khua Kling Pak Sod". The place is not large with a sushi counter right at the front where Chef Takahiro Hato leads the team. It is simply decorated in Japanese style.

At sushi counter, Chef Takahiro and a few other sushi chef (some Japanese and some Thai) serve customers eagerly. The style of Sushi Kanda is edomae sushi so don't expect those fancy sushi like spider rolls and etc. Ingredients here are claimed to be imported directly from Japan a few times a week and in many occasions you can expect to see seasonal ingredients that may be not found in other sushi places. I have to say that all chefs are friendly and polite but some staffs might still lack of practice. We were there for lunch and it was during public holiday. Hence, the place was crowded and they could not really service properly. Firstly, they were mistaken with my booking time. Secondly, Deadly Chubby was given a chair with stacked layers of cushion/mattress instead of a stool at sushi counter. Staffs then kept coming to ask for mattress. This was really not an appropriate manner.

Sushi Kanda @ No. 88 Thonglor, Bangkok

sushi counter for about 10 seats

Chef Takahiro Hato

fillet of fish (^.^)

selection of fresh fish from Japan

At Sushi Kanda, they have both choices of a la carte and set. There are also omakase course available which are priced at THB3,000 - 7,000. This is expensive indeed. This price tag is in the same range as those Michelin-starred sushi restaurants in Tokyo. However, we opted there for lunch during weekday and there were lunch set available. We decided to go for Nigiri Set 10 Pieces which could be filling enough for me but many people may find it too little. Each piece was quite small though. Choices of sushi in the set seems to be changed daily depending of ingredients available. See under each photo for what I got.

The set was served altogether not as piece-by-piece. I am not so sure whether it was due to crowded lunch and chefs were really busy. The over all impression was not exceptional. I guess they were busy and knife skill of each chef is different. Look for Chef Takahiro himself if possible.

Nigiri Set 10 Pieces (THB880)

Ikura (Salmon Roe) - いくら

Hirame (Flounder) - 平目

Kisu (Japanese Whiting) - 

Kampachi (Amberjack) - 勘八

Hotate (Scallop) - 帆立

These were decent sushi but not fabulous sushi. The texture of rice was ok. A little too soft to my liking in fact. I love sushi rice to have some chewy texture like the Italian says al dente. The flavour still lacks sour dimension. For quality of ingredients, I would not say it is the very top in town but good enough. It was lunch time and ingredients were from the previous day, I suppose. What I love about sushi is the compliment and balance between sour from rice, natural sweetness from fish, and saltiness from the sauce. At Sushi Kanda, things tend to be too mild though. Here are my brief description.

Ikura (Salmon Roe) - いくら (6/10) was nice and sweet. Hirame (Flounder) - 平目 (5/10) and Kisu (Japanese Whiting) - 鱚 (4/10) were bland. Kampachi (Amberjack) - 勘八 and Hotate (Scallop) - 帆立 were sweet but not interesting.

Kinmedai (Splendid Alfonsino) - 金目鯛 (6/10), Akami (red fillet of tuna) - 赤身 (6/10), and Toro (fatty tuna) - とろ (5/10) had its own natural sweetness but not as good as supposed to be. Especially for toro, I expected to see the melting magic that burst into series of flavour. On the other hand, I founMadai (Seabream) - 真鯛 (7/10) to be the only outstanding for the meal. It came with nice chewy but tender texture and natural mild sweetness. Really an unexpected piece of sushi. The last piece was Tamagoyaki (Japanese Omelette) - 卵焼き (5/10) which was really normal standard tamagoyaki.

At the price of THB880++ for this set, it was not dearly expensive nor valuable. However, I doubt I would ever try the much higher price omakase course if what I would get are similar in term of quality to these lunch set. However, if you happen to be at Sushi Kanda, you might as well give a go for its famous dishes such as bafun and murasaki uni, hotate isobeyaki, big roll, and saba mirinboshi.

Kinmedai (Splendid Alfonsino) - 金目鯛

Madai (Seabream) - 真鯛

Akami (red fillet of tuna) - 赤身

Toro (fatty tuna) - とろ

Tamagoyaki (Japanese Omelette) - 卵焼き

Sushi Kanda @ Thonglor, Bangkok - ซูชิคันดะ @ ซอยทองหล่อ กรุงเทพฯ
Floor 2, No. 88
Soi Pai Di Ma Di Klang (between Thonglor 5 and 9)
Khlong Tan Nuea, Wattana
Bangkok 10110

Open Hours: for lunch Thu-Mon 11:30am - 01:30pm and for dinner Wed-Mon 05:30pm - 11:00pm
Tel: +66 (0) 2712 6639

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Philippe Pacalet Nuits Saint Georges 2009

Date of Tasting: 9 August 2014
Wine Type: Red
Grape Varieties: 100% Pinot Noir
Alcohol: 13%
Origin: Bourgogne, France
Appellation: Nuits-Saint-Georges Controlee
Expect to Pay: ~ THB3,000
Chubby Score: 91/100
Value for money: 4/10
Professional Rating: AG - 89/100, BH - 90/100, CT - 90/100

Appearance: ruby in colour
Aroma: red fruit aroma like strawberry with detectable mild flowers floor of which rose petals standout, some cinnamon and smoky cigar on the background
Palate: somewhat creamy with chewy but silky tannins in medium body style. a little perky acidity. pureness of ripe strawberry and minerality. 

It needs time indeed. Let this baby sleeps a few more years before experiencing it, otherwise give it a couple of hours with air. The nose is pretty nice but difference from the highly aromatic Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru La Perrieres 2009 which shows super nose but light body. If a more masculine type of pinot noir is your style, you may give this one a try. Do give it enough time to breath though.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Fu Sing Shark Fin Seafood Restaurant @ Yee Woo Street, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong - 富聲魚翅海鮮酒家 @ 怡和街銅鑼灣香港

Cuisine: Chinese / Cantonese
Price: HKD160 per person without alcohol (what we paid for)
Visited: 11 July 2014
Food: 7/10
Atmosphere: 5/10
Value for money: 7/10
Services: 5/10
Scale: [1=poor ---- 5=average/standard ---- 10=outstanding/exceptional]

Fu Sing is another big famous Chinese restaurant on the islands of Hong Kong. Understand that there are 2 branches: one at Wan Chai and this one at Causeway Bay. Fu Sing may be well-known for its seafood dishes (obviously from its name), however, the dim sum lunch is as well top of the class. The one at Causeway Bay is within the walking distance from MTR Causeway Bay and is on the 1st floor of 68 Yee Woo Street. You will spot Din Tai Fung on the ground floor. The place is spacious but do not expect anything fancy for decoration: just ordinary Chinese restaurant in Hong Kong really. For the service wise, it is at least not so rude but still Hong Kong style. The pricing of dim sum menu is not expensive but not cheap. Expect to pay around HKD150 per head (English menu is available with photo which is really convenient). By the way, the place can be crowded so a call ahead would help. For us, we arrived around 1pm, there were a few tables available but the place was still packed.

Fu Sing Shark Fin Seafood Restaurant @ Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

store front at Causeway Bay branch

local style HK restaurant

illustrative dim sum menu #1

illustrative dim sum menu #2

Dim sum here comprises of traditional range, nothing fancy really for Fu Sing. All dishes looked pretty much ordinary but delicious. The first four we had were pan-fried juicy meat dumplings (6/10), steamed pork dumpling with mushroom (7/10), steamed shrimp dumpling (6/10), and steamed juicy meat dumpling in Shanghai style (7/10). These four are basic and classic dim sum menu but were of good quality. I would not have to say much about these juicy and tender touch menu.

pan-fried juicy meat dumplings (HKD40, 4 pieces)

dumpling dipping in vinegar sauce

steamed pork dumpling with mushroom (HKD34)

steamed shrimp dumpling (HKD40)

steamed juicy meat dumpling in Shanghai style (HKD40)

Next dish of the meal was steamed beef ball with bean sheet (7/10). This is a simply delicious dish. Again it was so tender and was with rich flavour. I could have all of the three in the basket by myself. The next two are not to be missed at Fu Sing: baked walnut and roasted chicken cake (8/10) and baked barbecued pork bun (8/10). Baked walnut and roasted chicken cake was recommended by one of the staffs. I was not disappointed at this dish at all. It was more like a tart in fact. The tart dough was crisp but still soft touch texture. The filling was yummy rich flavour with walnut as the third dimension of texture. Baked bbq pork bun, on the other hand, was soft but with cracked skin layer. The bbq pork filling was really delicious. I do like the balance flavour between sweetness and saltiness. Only if there were more filling, this would be a simply 10-point dish. BBQ pork bun can be found anywhere in Hong Kong but Fu Sing is sure one not to be missed and also value for money from my perspective.

steamed beef ball with bean sheet (HKD28)

baked walnut and roasted chicken cake (HKD40, 3 pieces)

baked barbecued pork bun (HKD40, 3 pieces)

yummy bbq pork filling

Lastly, those heavier and more filling menu are perhaps a compulsory thing for dim sum. We had, everyone favourite (I suppose), steamed buns with melting salty egg yolk paste (7/10) and steamed lotus seed purée with egg yolk (6/10). I would say that both had really nice filling. The melting salty egg yolk had a minor touch of sweetness to cut saltiness of egg yolk, whilst lotus seed purée was so fine and smooth with not too sweet taste on the palate. Nevertheless, these two shared rather turn down point in common which was the dough. We think that if the bun was softer, they would be much better dishes, especially the later one due to much larger size. Be warned that steamed lotus seed purée with egg yolk bun is really big and it could fill up your stomach easily. I would suggest you to share this with someone. Don't go for one each like us.

steamed buns with melting salty egg yolk paste (HKD34)

runny filling

steamed lotus seed purée with egg yolk (HKD18 each)

so smooth lotus seed purée

Fu Sing Shark Fin Seafood Restaurant @ Yee Woo Street, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong - 富聲魚翅海鮮酒家 @ 怡和街銅鑼灣香港
Floor 1, 68 Yee Woo Street
Causeway Bay
Hong Kong

Open Hours: daily 11:00am (10:30am for Sunday) - 11:00pm
Tel: +852 2504 4228

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Elvio Cogno Barolo Vigna Elena Riserva 2007

Date of Tasting: 26 July 2014
Wine Type: Red
Grape Varieties: 100% Nebbiolo
Alcohol: 14.5%
Origin: Barolo, Italy
Appellation: DOCG
Expect to Pay: ~ THB3,000
Chubby Score: 97/100
Value for money: 9/10
Professional Rating: WA - 96/100, AG - 97/100, WS - 93/100, JS - 94/100, FS - 95/100, CT - 94/100

Appearance: bright ruby at this stage
Aroma: bouquet of rose, plum, dried cherry, and mulberry with mild oakiness
Palate: fine silky tannins with fresh and vibrant structure. big, dense, and full with integrated beautiful length. quality and rich in juicy fruit. complexity is there.

Pop and pour. Stunning right there. A pretty fine bottle of Barolo with 100% Nebbiolo of Rose clone. I could just sip this all night long. It is drinking wonderfully now but it would be interesting to follow during the next decades. Fascinating future lies ahead of this Elvio Cogno Barolo Vigna Elena Riserva 2007. Cheers and many more cheers!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tempura Fukumachi @ Kyobashi, Tokyo - てんぷら深町 @ 日本東京都中央区京橋

Cuisine: Japanese (Tempura)
Price: JPY7,000 per person without alcohol (what we paid for)
Visited: 9 July 2014
Food: 10/10
Atmosphere: 7/10
Value for money: 10/10
Services: 9/10
Scale: [1=poor ---- 5=average/standard ---- 10=outstanding/exceptional]

Deadly Bunny mentioned that the most fantastic meal during her trip to Tokyo in July 2014 was a lunch with delicious tempura at Tempura Fukumachi. It is located pretty close to Kyobashi station (100 meters perhaps). The place is again very small: just a block of commercial building with around 15 seats (cc. 10 seats at L-shaped counter and a few other tables). Make sure you do give an advance reservation to avoid disappointment when visiting this 1-Michelin Starred tempura place.

She happened to be there during lunch time and noticed that a few of local would order a bowl with mixed tempura (Kakiage Tendon) for their quick lunch meal. For course meal, there are 2 choices during lunch time: 7,000 yen and 9,000 yen, and it happened to be the 7,000 yen course for this visit. The 7,000 yen course comprised of 5 kind of vegetable, 3 kind of seafood, and a mini anago rice bowl, miso soup, and dessert to finish.

Tempura Fukumachi @ Kyobashi, Tokyo

てんぷら深町 @ 日本東京都中央区京橋

menu choices

dishware setting

The magic of this unrivaled (if I am not exaggerated) is not just the perfect ingredients and care. There are techniques and experiences putting in as well. Each piece is battered only thinly and then fried lightly in order to preserve as much as possible on the natural flavour. You may also noticed that Tempura Fukumachi uses 2 woks to perform the operation: one with lower temperature dedicated for delicate ingredients like vegetables and one with higher temperature for seafood in which crispiness is seeked.

The beauty of tempura at Tempura Fukumachi is truly the crispiness and not oily. The course started with prawn in which prawn head was served first and separately. The prawn head was so crisp and tasty. It was then followed by sweetcorn and luffa. Sweetcorn was of high quality. It was really sweet as it is called. Then a white fish, which she believes it was kisu, was served. Another two light vegetables of aubergine and lotus root were given in between before squid with excellent taste and batter was brought out. Last but not least, it was asparagus (it was summer time perhaps). The last dish before miso soup and dessert were served was anago rice bowl. This was extremely delicious and really filled up. The tempura sauce also sang tunefully.

In brief, this is a destination to be jotted down into a must visit list for Tokyo. Tempura at Fukumachi is indeed a 10 stars performance.

prawn head

another prawn head



luffa (not 100% sure)

fish (kisu????)


lotus root




anago on rice

miso soup

green tea ice-cream

Tempura Fukumachi @ Kyobashi, Tokyo - てんぷら深町 @ 日本東京都中央区京橋
2-5-2 Kyobashi
Chuo-ku, Tokyo

Open Hours: For lunch 11:30am - 02:00pm and for dinner 05:00pm - 10:00pm daily except Monday
Tel: +81 3 5250 8777
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blogging tips