For a remarkable 10 years, chef Kenjiro 'Hatch' Hashida has been making waves in Singapore's sushi scene. From its first home at Mandarin Gallery to Mohammad Sultan Road, and now at the bustling restaurant and bar hub of Amoy Street, Hashida Singapore has only gotten better – and chef Hatch has always been at the centre of this success. He continues to innovate and stay relevant in Singapore’s crowded omakase landscape, where new spots sprout up almost every other week.
His latest menu, “The Hashida Universe”, puts his culinary principles at the forefront, highlighting three guiding philosophies that help him create these remarkable dining experiences. The first, shu ha ri, refers to keeping with tradition before learning to break through. The second, shōmi hakkei, is his personal dogma of drawing from experience and applying it to his work and the third, ryuu ryuu shin ku, is to work hard and persevere.
These philosophies are apparent throughout the dinner omakase experience – a narrative journey into chef Hashida's life, from his childhood to his time as a young chef in Tokyo. The meal starts with a monaka cracker topped with crab and caviar, a reference to one of his earliest food memories – a cracker and dip snack prepared by a friend’s mum. It sets the tone for the rest of the evening. While rooted in tradition, Chef Hashida’s creations are playful and downright fun. The next dish, the chawanmushi, captures this as well because who else could pair pungent blue cheese with abalone, mushroom sauce, roasted beetroot and daikon and pull it off?
The masterclass of creativity and balance doesn’t stop there. Slivers of chutoro (fatty tuna), katsuo (bonito) and kue (grouper) are served with a house-made wasabi paste created with typically discarded wasabi peels that are then simmered in soy sauce and mixed with fresh grated wasabi. More seafood is then served on a hoba leaf with house-fermented chestnut miso that’s aged for three months. Hashida’s version of miso offers a bold and salty punch compared to the milder Japanese misos that tend to be aged for at least a year, a testament to what Singapore’s heat and humidity can help create.
Even the sushi experience is slightly different from the norm. Opting for multiple thin slices of fish that elegantly cover the rice, chef Hatch's neta-to-shari ratio and seasoning for each morsel is spot-on. While the fish you get is dictated by the season and the freshest catch of the day, some standouts from our experience included the botan ebi (shrimp), buttery stone snapper, and an indulgent handroll of rice, tachiuo (beltfish) and uni – a guaranteed crowd-pleaser.
Hashida's lunch menus are priced from $200 and dinner starts at $450 and takes almost 3 hours to complete so be sure to budget accordingly.