SUMI Yakitori 炭 - Adventurous Yakitori


Getting to SUMI Yakitori was a bit of an adventure in itself as the restaurant was located in an alley off Lockhart Road and in a building full of hostess bars!  When I called to make a reservation, I was informed that there are 2 seatings available: 7pm-9pm and 9pm-11pm. I chose the first seating and came here promptly at 7pm with 5 other friends. 

Once we got off the elevator, we had to ring the doorbell before we were let inside the restaurant. The restaurant was decently big with seats at the yakitori bar as well as tables in the general dining area. All of the magic took place behind the counter with lots of smoke and action! Unfortunately, the ventilation was not that good here meaning that my clothes smelled like yakitori afterwards. 

The yakitori menu was vast with lots of selections in chicken, beef, pork, seafood and vegetables. There was also another kitchen menu with dishes like rice, noodles, tempura, etc. We ordered a bit of everything to share from both menus.

Before our food arrived, we were given a free appetizer which consisted of seaweed tomatoes, and imitation crab in vinegar sauce. The ingredients were simple yet the sauce was quite acidic and appetizing as a starter.  

Grilled Puffer Fish ($92) - the puffer fish jerky was grilled perfectly as it was crispy and chewy at the same time. The puffer fish tasted slightly sweet and the mayonnaise was great as an enhancement for flavor. 
Grilled Ox Tongue ($58) - the grilled ox tongue was executed nicely here as well as the tongue was juicy and tender while seasoned perfectly. A wasabi mustard sauce was provided as well though I thought the sauce was too strong and overpowering at times. 

Grilled Chicken Cartilage ($30) - the chicken cartilage was very crunchy but over-seasoned so it was a bit salty. The fresh lemon juice helped to take away some of the saltiness. 

Grilled Spiced Chicken Kidney ($30) - the chicken kidney, on the other hand, was a nice surprise as the texture was very bouncy, and seasoned perfectly. I liked this more than the cartilage. 

Grilled Chicken Wings ($35) - the chicken wings were grilled nicely on the surface but the meat was not as tender or flavorful, so they were not really memorable at all. An okay dish at best. 
Grilled Bacon & Cherry Tomato Roll ($35) - the cherry tomatoes were HOT!! We were forewarned but I still popped the entire thing in my mouth. The bacon was crispy and salty while the tomato was sweet and hot. It was a good combination but I think I would have enjoyed it more if I wasn't so concerned with burning my mouth. 
Grilled Eggplant ($45) - I was hoping this would be a miso-glazed grilled eggplant but it was just freshly grilled eggplant with ginger and soy sauce as dip. The eggplant was alright but it wasn't as flavorful as I'd hope it would be. 
Grilled Lamb Chop ($88) - we had gotten this last time and it was also highly recommended by our friends. Unfortunately, the lamb chop this time was a tad overcooked so the meat was a bit tough and chewy. The taste was great though as it was gamey and flavorful at the same time. 
Foie Gras & Egg Rice ($180) - my favorite dish of the night! They smashed up the foie gras and egg for us before serving it into little bowls for us. The rice was really rich and flavorful with bits of foie gras and egg in every bite. It was very filling and a nice dish to round up our dinner. 
Verdict - the yakitori here was on average pretty good as they know what they are doing in terms of grilling and seasoning. I don't think it's the best in town, but a solid joint with reasonable prices. The service was friendly too as I didn't get to take a picture of our foie gras rice before it was smashed up so the waitress offered to let me take a picture of someone else's rice when it was ready. It's a nice hidden gem in an alley (literally), and if your elevator *accidentally* stops on the other floors, you'll have interesting stories to tell too! 

SUMI Yakitori
9/F, Evernew House, 485 Lockhart Road, Causeway Bay
2980 3312 

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