Tradition, innovation and transcendence. The old and the new come alive in Hashida Singapore’s visuals and flavours.
*This review first appeared in Wine & Dine’s 2021 ‘Spice & Aromatics’ issue
The ever-profound chef-owner Kenjiro ‘Hatch’ Hashida finds more room, three to be exact, to express a 守破離 Shu Ha Ri philosophy at Hashida Singapore’s new location at Amoy Street. Derived from Japanese martial arts, the idea emblematises three learning milestones of a student — tradition, innovation and transcendence.
Rife with symbolism, the interior begins with a torii (Shinto shrine gate) welcome then down a corridor that leads to three dining rooms. Each is decorated with a different theme in mind: the first has a dramatic rocky false ceiling and gradient wall to reflect the duality of yin and yang; the second is a rustic ode to the first restaurant in Tokyo; and the third, the chef’s table with walls made of 200-year-old wooden beams from Kyoto. For all the artistic interpretation it’s afforded, its aesthetic is essentially a visual proclamation of the team’s desire to deviate from the traditional Edomae sushi they were known for.
Fortunately for regulars, the courses never wander off too far from the well-executed, perfectly salted nigiri Hashida is known for. The devil is in the details, as they say, and it is only upon closer inspection do we see the team’s sense of adventure. Chutoro, for example, comes in cubes with grated wasabi made with its skin that’s peeled off and simmered in soy sauce. There are two courses that best illustrate his departure from the traditional — a handroll of seared tachiuo (belt fish) stacked over cold uni and room temperature shari that is a medley of temperatures, flavours and textures, and cured slices of young tuna that are salted, smoked and grilled over straw.
And if all that is just a teaser of what he has in store, we can’t wait to see what he’ll serve to the lucky seven guests at his chef ’s table.
Hashida Singapore is located at 77 Amoy Street, Singapore 069896. Opening hours are from 7pm to 10.30pm on Tuesdays, 12pm to 3pm and 7pm to 10.30pm from Wednesday to Sunday. For more information, visit hashida.sg