Situated at the spanking new Marina Bay Financial Centre, Akari offers a refreshing menu of traditional and contemporary Japanese cuisine that caters to the most exquisite palates at very reasonable prices. With an impressive executive lunch and Omakase course, and a spacious private dining room, Akari is the perfect place for a business lunch or company party, especially with its accessible location. As with an authentically Japanese experience, the service was impeccable from the moment we stepped into the restaurant.
Start off your meal with a glass of sparkling sake to whet your appetite. A modern take on the traditional sake, this was a drink created from the influence of Westerners in Japan who infused a delightful fizz into this Japanese alcoholic drink. Enjoyed by all generations, this is a trend that is rapidly gaining popularity in Japan. Lightly sweet, with an ever-so-slight alcoholic flavour, this drink won us over with its subtly refreshing nature. Alternatively, you could try their draft beers during Akari’s happy hour from Monday to Saturday.
What’s a Japanese meal without seafood? The Salmon Zukushi ($28) platter consisted of salmon, salmon belly and salmon roe. We especially loved the salmon belly, so tender and smooth that it simply slithered down our throats. The oyster ($12 for two), which was a special off-the-menu dish highly recommended by the staff, completely blew us over. Pan-fried in its own juices, it was succulent and slightly crispy, and glided into our mouths with the freshness of a crystalline rock pool.
To prepare ourselves for the onslaught of meat dishes, we cleansed our palate with the Negitoro Avocado Nama Harumaki ($28) – an astoundingly healthy dish, and yet absolutely delicious. A stunning visual masterpiece, we were enraptured by the arrangement of the leafy vegetables amidst the rice paper rolls. Delicately thin rice paper encased chopped tuna belly, so fine that it dissolved in our mouths, and diced avocado, whose muted taste complemented the fish perfectly. Creamy wasabi mayonnaise generously drizzled over the rice rolls provided an invigorating zing to round off this healthy salad.
The Nagaimo Somen ($6.50) was another super healthy, and eye-candy worthy appetizer that we thoroughly enjoyed. Fresh shredded noodle-style crunchy mountain yams in an adorable cocktail glass served with a sour plum-flavoured fish stock. This was a super light and refreshing dish that was proclaimed to be one of the healthiest by our server.
We were completely raving over the Soki Tatsuta Age ($26), which was a deep-fried simmered pork bone that had been boiled overnight till the cartilage was reduced to a smooth puree instead of the crunchy bone you would expect. This exemplifies the chef’s thoroughness in the execution of his dishes, where every slice of meat was fried to a crisp on the outside, yet retaining the tender moist texture within.
The Gindara Saikyo Yaki ($26) was my absolute FAVOURITE DISH ever!! Grilled cod marinated in sweet miso sauce for hours such that the flavours of the sauce were completely suffused in the fish made it so irresistibly delicious! The meat of the fish was firm, yet tender – a perfect dish in itself :)
With all this food, you would no doubt feel satiated at the end of your meal. But for a sweet touch, try the cheese cake ($7.50). A wobbly tofu cheesecake that balances precariously on a crunchy biscuit base, this sealed the deal for us to provide a closure for our meal.
*This is an article i wrote for reserveit.sg (: Try out their online reservation service, and you can check out more articles there!
Akari Japanese Dining & Bar
8A Marina Boulevard, GP #01-02
Marina Bay Financial Centre
Tel.: +65 6634 0100