Fancy some contemporary Japanese? Rizu is reason enough to stop by the very Pinterest-y Duxton Hill for sophisticated dinner
Confession of a foodie: we’ve got a sushi-shaped soft spot for Japanese food. But if we were competing, Hisamizu Takahashi might win. Who else would up and leave a career in pharmaceuticals to chase a fervent passion? Rizu, Duxton Hill’s newest restaurant and Hisamizu’s first, takes Japanese food and plays with it.
Walk down the leafy Duxton Hill stretch and you’ll probably gravitate towards the soft jazz wafting through from Rizu. Japanese and jazz go well together, especially if you’re out celebrating an anniversary or signing a major work deal. Keep that credit card close – this isn’t your casual, everyday meal.
It’s an intimate 30-odd seater, alfresco included, that proudly holds back – restraint can be just the calm you need after a crazy day at the office. It’s moody and understated with its dark grey on deep blue palette, dim lighting and dark wood tables. Take a moment to savour the lovely crockery that’s almost always mismatched and delightfully textured. Yeah, we always thumbs up the little things. So bonus points for quiet luxury.
We sat by the door but barely looked out. How could we when we’re served delectable modern Japanese food presented like some sort of art. Start off with bites – the pork pate with sansho pepper ($8) was made sweet with miso sauce. Take your time with the sake that’s curated to pair nicely with the modern Japanese plates. You can also switch it up with wine, craft beer and Champagne.
Foie gras fanatics, you’ll want to try the sake-marinated terrine ($12) and the eel and FG rolls ($32 for 8pcs) from the specials. Don’t miss the crunchy spicy tuna rolls(24 for 8pcs) that’ll momentarily make you’ve question your obsession with regular rolls sans tempura crumbs and heat. And what happens when you combine a lobster California roll ($20 for 5pcs) with ripe yellow mango? The correct answer is heart-eyes.
A five piece assorted nigiri platter drops at $30 – expect super fresh tuna, salmon, fatty tuna, horse mackerel and sea bream – pre-wasabi’d (generously) and soy’d. Take a moment to nod at the many shades of pink before you start poppin’ and sweating. Rizu is big on ikedukuri (or ikizukuri) that takes seafood from tank to table – and although we half expected something to be still wiggling, nothing was. Phew! For this fresh-off-the-aquarium sashimi decorated with edible flowers and such, Rizu goes all out. Bring your wallets, we ain’t kidding, it starts at $16 and goes up to $160! Expect Boston lobster, geoduck (before you ask, yes it’s cut into pieces and looks nothing like its true form) and abalone.
Got room for mains? They’ve got just about two – a wagyu A4 striploin steak ($58) with truffle shavings and a buttery black cod ($25) that leans towards the sweeter side of spectrum. And since you’re treating yourself to a fancy mod-Japanese meal with a side of smooth jazz and sake, might as well finish off with a saccharine macha rare cheese cake.
Rizu, 39 Duxton Hill, Singapore 089617
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