When a meal is outstandingly delicious but also extremely expensive, I’m often stuck on whether to recommend it or not. I mean given the extortionate price, how yummy could yummy be? But for once, I did not really find myself in this dilemma. Although my meal at Wagyu Takumi was likely the most expensive meal of my life, I’d definitely return for more. The whole package of service, quality, execution and all the finer details in between was an impressive and thoroughly enjoyable experience. I’d quite confidently say it’s worth the price tag, at least once, if not thrice in your life.
8 course Tasting Menu
I was afraid I might be embarking on an endless food journey when I saw the 8 course tasting menu, so I was contemplating the 6 course option instead. The problem with fine dining tasting menus is that they often take four to five hours and leave you restless by the fourth course.
I ended up with the 8 course menu anyway as I was advised that the Abalone and Shimanto Seaweed with Barley Risotto was a signature dish. That turned out to be one of the best decisions I’ve made in a long time because it was the most outstanding and memorable highlight of the night. The risotto’s sauce was so creamy and flavourful, while the use of French barley added intriguing layers of texture to the dish. The abalone on top was also seared perfectly and tender.
Thankfully, timing was impeccable here; I was never rushed but I never had to wait too long either. My meal finished in just over 2.5 hours – it felt perfect. The fact that their restaurant serves only 12 people maximum at a time, definitely ensures that they are on point with every small detail of your dining experience.
Every course was delicious
When having a tasting menu, I find that there’s usually at least two dishes which are only “so so” or even not good. By the time we reached number five, the biggest shock was that I had loved everything so far (and I continued to do so til the end). I started to feel repetitive as my instant reaction to every dish was: this is sooooo good.
We started off with 3 Kinds of Amuse Bouche. You tend to forget about the small dishes especially when they come too early on but one of them was raw botan shrimps topped with a velvet smooth cauliflower cream – and that is a bite you just don’t ever forget about! In fact, fancy seafood ingredients aside, even the Garden Vegetables were unforgettable, thanks to the thick creamy asparagus sauce that accompanied this seemingly modest dish.
The signature Wagyu beef
Every main course choice sounded extremely tempting: 1. Roasted French Racan Pigeon with Caramelized Endive, 2. Roasted French Blue Lobster with Japanese Pumpkin Ravioli (I was so close to choosing this) but 3. was a Charcoal Grilled Kagoshima Wagyu Tenderloin and Wagyu Beef Tartare and I ultimately could not say no to that. It turned out to be an excellent choice, although I’m sure any main course would’ve left anyone as satisfied.
In fact, the diner next to us ordered the lobster and then had the beef tenderloin too… I was confused but indifferent at first. I then overheard him speaking to the waiter. “Actually, I’d like to try the pigeon too, because everything is just absolutely delicious!” While I wouldn’t have been able to stomach three main courses (in addition to seven other courses) in one sitting, I couldn’t agree with him more.
Desserts and Petit Fours
At the expense of a very repetitive post, the desserts were equally amazing. Not only did I wipe the plate clean (well I did that for every course anyway), thank god I was dining with someone with a slightly smaller stomach, as I unhesitantly also had two servings of the petit fours!
An Occassion for a table of 2-4
Our 8 course choice was HK$1980 and the 6 course is HK$1580 and although this meal was expensive, it’s one of the rare ones I’d confidently say is “worth it”. With strong attention to detail from both the chef and waiters, the experience is as good as the taste, as with the presentation. However, the bar table-type setting means that it’s not at all ideal for a group of more than four people – it’s best reserved for slightly more intimate gatherings.
Chef Konishi comes from all the way from France, where he used to cook in the historically significant, Taillevant. Apart from the two Michelin stars the restaurant has already been awarded with, he was also more recently honored as “Chevalier dans l’Ordre National du Merite” by the Consul General of France. That explains everything…