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Sunday, October 7, 2012

Shintaro Japanese Restaurant Review - Four Seasons Bangkok

Shintaro Japanese Restaurant at Four Seasons Hotel, Bangkok - Sashimi, Sushi Roll, Soba 



Overall Score  8.5/10
Taste   4.5/5
Ambiance  4.5/5
Service  4.5/5
Value   4/5

Shintaro Japanese Restaurant on BumRes.com



This review is on the Shintaro at the Four Seasons Bangkok, the top notch five-star hotel with about 30 years of experience.  I reviewed the Shintaro at lunch time earlier this year.  On this visit at dinner time, my friend has the hotel membership card and he received some gift vouchers for discounts, free bottle of wine, and free 1 pound cake.  What a lucky day for me to be with this guy who had all the vouchers.  In the party of four, we feasted like the King at the Shintaro, official Japanese restaurant of the Four Seasons.

Compared to Japanese restaurants in five-star hotels of Bangkok, Shintaro is considered small.  There are about ten tables and the long counter bar seating for about ten people.  One down side about the Shintaro is that it only has one semi private room.  However, the low table with traditional Japanese set up was beautifully designed; absolutely sophisticated.  For business travelers, I suggest to make a reservation ahead of the time for this particular private den.   

I remember that the set lunch at Shintaro was quite impressive.  For comparable Japanese set lunch, Shintaro is definitely one of the best in Bangkok.  One other place that I think it is better than Shintaro is the Nanohana@ J-Avenue.  At dinner time, food selection at Shintaro is similar to any typical Japanese places except the menu is more concise and the price is higher than most for being in the hotel.  However, hotel members can get 50% off which is a wonderful bargain.  On this visit, we have two membership cards.  We must have two separate bills for each card, so we sat at the counter bar instead of the regular table.






The luxurious Japanese dinner at Shintaro for us started off with the Aoyama Sushi Combination (3,250++ baht), which consisted of Otoro, Chutoro, Hamachi, Salmon, Ark Shell, Travelly (in Japanese; I am not sure if it was Kampachi or Shima Aji), and Bota ebi.  We got two of each kind.  The fish was sliced to a perfect size; not too big and not too thick.   It was just enough to get the wonderful flavor.  The beautifully arranged sashimi was so appetizing; I wanted the whole dish for myself, lol…  The full price of this assortment is not cheap at all but with the member’s card, it was all good for us.  I got to try the Otoro, the Salmon, and the Hamachi.  All of which were fresh and tasty.  My friend said that the Chutoro and the Botan ebi were the best though.  





The second dish was the seafood, seaweed, and vegetable with soy dressing salad (470++ baht).  The staff told us that it was a popular one.  Its attractive presentation was the charm.  The vinaigrette dressing was subtle and tasty.  A couple more shrimps and salmon added would make it perfect.  The vegetable mix comprised of quality choices; good salad!







The next two dishes were the maki rolls.  Spicy tuna tempura sushi (500++ baht) was the first one to come.  There could be less of the sauce so its taste will be lighter.  The special dark soy sauce took over the natural flavor of the tuna, though the light tempura batter wrap was nice and cripy.  We finished it all anyways.  The size of the roll wasn’t too big.  The other roll was the Foi gras tropical sushi (810++ baht), which was quite a delicious one.  Contexts complimented each other nicely.  The buttery foie gras and the sweet mango were a pair.  The rice covered with the black sesame added a light crunchy texture to the roll.  We all agreed that this roll was well done.  We highly recommend it on your visit at the Shintaro.







Next up were series of random picks of Sushi.  Sear Salmon Sushi (380++ / 2pcs) looked amazing and it was even better than its look.  My friend said that it was one of the best sear salmon sushi he has had recently.  Imagine this sushi with the Ikura (Salmon roe), it would be perfect.  We had Tamago (110++ / 2 pcs), which was just ordinary good.  Shime Saba (170++ / 2 pcs) had just the right balance of saltiness and sour.  The Hotate (320++ / 2 pcs) was the best I ever had.  It was so fresh and so sweet. Man! I’m still dreaming of the Hotate at Shintaro @ Four Seasons.  The last choice was the Akami (360++ / 2pcs), which was nothing exciting.  It wasn’t even as close to the goodness gracious Akami at Mugendai @ The Glass Thonglor.  Best picks of the night were Hotate, Chutoro, Shime Saba, and Salmon.  If you order our recommended sushi, we promise you will be in love with the Chefs at Shintaro. 









The next three dishes were the main dish.  Kurubota with Uni stuffing (890++ baht) was a strange choice that we have never seen anywhere.  We were worried about how the Uni would turn out after the deep fry process.  It was a mistake.  The Uni was worthless being in the pork.  We could get the jelly texture like the fresh Uni.  To be honest, the Kurubota Tonkatsu wasn’t done well neither.  It was a Chef’s special that wasn’t as special as expected.  The other main dish was the Pan grilled salmon teriyaki on sesame sauce, salmon roe on steamed rice served with miso soup (590 baht).  The salmon was just a bit overcooked and the plain sauce didn’t interest me much.  Fortunately we had the highlight served around the same time.  It was the Pan-fried Atlantic cod fish with spicy cream sauce (720++ baht).  Its spicy cream sauce was to-die-for.  The bite of spiciness followed the creamy sweet flavor which was just spectacular with the soft texture Atlantic cod.  I just loved the sauce so much that I poured it over the grilled Salmon rice bowl.  It actually made the Salmon dsih better.   







The next two dishes were noodles; Soba and Udon.   Ten zaru soba (370 baht) was the soba served with shrimp tempura.  It was a really good Soba.  My friends were so crazy about this one.  We recommend this menu to you as well.  And the other one, the Cold Udon was not as impressive.  It must be because of the new Udon joint in the Sukhumvit 23, the Yokoi Udon, specializes in only Udon and they are great at it. 









You probably think that we will skip the dessert.  No, we have three choices of the dessert from the menu and one pound of the Blueberry Cheesecake (gift voucher).  The first sweet ending was the Jasmine Custard (240 baht).  It must be the best of the three.  Its appearance was like a French dessert.  The custard was very light, so it was great to enjoy with oatmeal crisps and biscuit given aside.  Mochi and marshmellow (240 baht) and Matcha lava cake (240 baht) were a Japanese fusion dessert.  I liked the lava cake that came with the ice-cream more.  The mochi dessert was weird.  We redeemed a gift voucher for the 1pound of Blueberry Cheesecake.  It was incredible.  I am not surprised because the Bakery at Four Seasons is known to be the hot spot.  Customers has to get numbered queue card sometimes.

All in all, the classy Japanese dinner at Shintaro of the Four Seasons Bangkok was definitely impressive.  Every dish was carefully prepared and the taste very much showed good quality ingredients.  Beautiful presentation and adequate portion of each dish couldn’t make us any less happy.  However, many premium Japanese restaurants in Bangkok today have raised the standard of Japanese dining with super premium quality ingredients.  Honestly Shintaro may not reach that level of excellence but Shintaro is surely one of the great Japanese restaurants of Bangkok; especially when you have the 50% member’s discount.  We couldn’t ask for more.  






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