GINZA IWA 銀座いわ | Hong Kong

Rating: ❤❤

Having been to Sushi Iwa in Tokyo, we were ecstatic to learn that they have opened up a branch in Hong Kong! Located in the Asia Pacific Center, the elevator will only take you up to the 29/F where its sister teppanyaki restaurant Ginza Iwa Sumibi is at with another flight of stairs for Ginza Iwa specifically. Someone else had made the booking for lunch and I didn't realized that our booking was at Ginza Iwa Sumibi instead of Ginza Iwa until I arrived. Due to our party size of 5, my guess was that it was easier to get a table at Sumibi than the limited counter seats at Ginza Iwa. However, I was informed by the staff at Sumibi that we can still order sushi from Ginza Iwa, and the only difference would be that the sushi will not be made in front of us and handed to us one by one. Okay that was fine with us!

The sushi lunch menu at Ginza Iwa had 3 options: Haru at $450, Aki at $800, and Omakase at $1250. The prices were pretty expensive especially since the omakase for lunch in Tokyo only cost ¥10,000 (~$800). I ended up ordering the Haru while J got the Aki. 

Our lunch sets also came with salad and daikon with beef stew. The salad was average with the standard sesame salad sauce.

The stew was rather interesting with its chewy texture but while the container was super hot, unfortunately the content was not. 
After our appetizers, we had to wait quite a while before our sushi finally arrived.

The Haru came with 8 pieces of sushi and 4 rolls. The Akami was rather bland while I liked the chewy texture of the Kinmedai. The Aji was interesting with a negi paste on top. All the pieces tasted alright but nothing to write home about. The only piece that really stood out was the hotate because it was different as it had been marinated with yuzu. It was intriguing but just not sure if the combination worked for me.

The Aki came with 12 pieces of sushi and 4 rolls as well. I think the bulk of the sushi was quite similar to Haru but had more higher value items like toro, uni, shrimp, etc. Again, most of the sushi were just average in flavor. The uni was really salty for some reason - as if someone had put salt on it.

The kanpyo rolls which was made up of simmered gourd were sweet and light to eat. 
The dessert we received was warabi mochi, which was perfectly chewy and not too sweet. 
Verdict - we were very disappointed with the sushi at Ginza Iwa. It actually looked pretty good at first glance, but after eating a couple pieces, we all looked at each other with a perplexed look like 'this is it?' I mean it wasn't bad, but for the price, I was expecting much higher quality and more flavors. Most of the pieces weren't that impressive, let alone memorable. Even the rice was not warm which is what one comes to expect from quality sushi restaurants. I'm still trying to figure out what went wrong. Was it simply because we were not sitting at the sushi counter? If so, then their sister restaurant should not have allowed us to order from Ginza Iwa if they cannot ensure the quality of their food. We felt gypped because the quality of the sushi we got was on par with Fukusuke and yet we were charged double and triple the price.


30/F, Asia Pacific Centre,8 Wyndam Street, Central 
2619 0199

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