Dunno what to eat this summer? In Japan, eel’s the reigning summertime fave, highly prized as a stamina-boosting food says Chef Ricky Kamiishi. At Iketeru, he proffers a sumptuous seven-course Unagi Set Menu (RM350nett per person) and also a special Unagi à la carte menu which runs until 31 July 2015.
Delivered twice weekly from the Miyazaki prefecture - an area renowned for premium unagi – in Kyushu island, the unagi is sought-after as the eels from here are more tender with desirable marbling (fat).
Chef Ricky Kamiishi stays true to traditional cooking methods cherished by the Japanese hence you’d find specialities like Unajyu, grilled eel basted with a sweet sauce laid atop rice or Nagoya-style Unagi Hitsumabushi which renders the eel skin is crispy and enticingly aromatic, among others.
At the preview, we sampled delicate portions of Uzaku – grilled eel with an appetising salad of cucumber and wakame seaweed macerated with vinegar sauce (mixed with a little dashi or bonito stock), flecked with sesame seeds. A refreshing yet ethereally light curtain-raiser to prime one’s palate.
The set also includes eel ‘dumpling’ (a delightful spongy-light combination of tofu, fishcake and vegetable) simmered with bonito sauce, topped with curly slivers of negi (Japanese leek).
Another pillow-soft creation is Japanese omelette with eel (top most pix) – the tamagoyaki’s wondrous fluffy lightness enrobing an exquisitely flavoured slice of eel in its centre.
Pink pickled ginger stems appear alongside Unagi Shirayaki – a deceptively pared-down dish which involved the eel being steamed with sake before it is grilled with a touch of salt. The eel’s inherent sweetness is discernible when you bite into it.
We love the toasty accent of the maki roll wrapped with bamboo leaf; the slightly sticky rice acting as a clear canvas to capture and show the eel’s natural deliciousness at its best.
The chef has also rustled up a new a la carte selection starting this month. Among them is broiled salmon carpaccio-style, a simple but superbly delectable delicacy that allows you to savour the salmon belly’s voluptuous richness.
Teppanyaki grilled lamb rack looks set to be another surefire hit with diners. Using prime meat from Australian lamb rack, the dish is teppan-cooked to perfection, complemented by plump black mushroom, lightly charred broccoli florets and crispy deep-fried garlic flakes on the side.
Those partial to steamed offerings may prefer steamed cod with rice wine – a sublime combination of sweet cod, silky beancurd, buna shimeiji mushrooms and Japanese spinach; stimulating the tastebuds with its impossibly coy flavours and varying textures.
New dessert choices include vanilla wrapped mocha, chocolate and cheese ice cream…again the treats are mildly sweet to satisfy one’s sweet tooth without going overboard.
For reservations at Iketeru, call tel:03 2264 2596 or visit www.life.hiltonkl.com for more information.