Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar combines Japanese grilled favourites, fresh sashimi and sushi, affordable donburi sets, and a good selection of sake, all rolled into one.
One of the newest eateries to open at The Capitol Kempinski Singapore is Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar. The casual izakaya is the latest concept from EN Group, joining the sprawling Japanese restaurant empire which now counts over 50 outlets across concepts like EN Dining, Monster Curry, Tamago-En, Tempura Makino, and Chura Sushi Bar, among others.
Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar takes over the space previously occupied by sushi restaurant Katachi Style. The interior and decor reminds you of pretty much every izakaya you’ve been to, aside from an open kitchen with a roaring charcoal grill sizzling with all manner of meats and seafood that’s bound to draw curious onlookers.
The food as well. The menu is chockfull of familiar izakaya favourites. In typical EN-Dining style it tries to offer something for everybody, from yakimono and sushi and sashimi to a plethora of noodle and rice bowls.
And everything in between.
We’re usually rather skeptical when a restaurant tries to do everything. But in Ka-EN’s case, it works.
Our Sashimi Moriawase platter came glisteningly fresh, the scallops plump and bluefin tuna well marbled with fat. The Nigiri Sushi too, with the otoro again impressing with its freshness and quality.
The grilled items at Ka-EN truly stand out. The Ika Surume of grilled squid was imbued with a lovely smoky char yet remained tender to the bite. The DIY Premium Sumi Yaki Set – which features A4/A5 Miyazaki wagyu and even comes with accoutrements for turning them into nigiri sushi – is fun if you like grilling at your own table. But if you’re lazy (or afraid of overcooking the prized cut), opt for the highly-recommended Signature Meat Platter instead. This comes with the Miyazaki wagyu already perfectly seared, but also Iberico pork cheek, teppan chicken, and a variety of assorted vegetables.
Also a special mention for its Gyutan. These are thin slices of sauteed beef tongue, a specialty from Sendai that’s relatively hard to find in Singapore except in specialty restaurants (though we really would have preferred it grilled over charcoal like they do in Sendai).
Need your rice? Their Premium Buta Kashira Don is excellent for its price, a rice bowl loaded with grilled Iberico pork cheek, vegetables and an onsen egg that will also make a perfect solo lunch option. And while there are a number of ramen options here, try the more unusual Shiro Ebi Bukkake Inaniwa Udon instead. This is silky and chewy udon noodles coated in a creamy sauce – a Japanese twist on carbonara, if you will – topped with tiny Japanese glass shrimp and salmon roe. Absolutely slurp-worthy.
Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar makes a good stop for drinks after work. There’s a good selection of sake here. Go for the KA-En Otsumami with Sake Flight as a start – which comes with three seasonal sakes – while you decide on a bottle. There is a variety of whisky highballs if you’re not into sake, and some wine and beer options too.
And like a proper Japanese-style izakaya you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to drinks-friendly agemono snacks. Consider the 3 Kinds Grilled Fish Appetiser – eihire (stingray fin), fugu mirin (puffer fish), and kawahagi (filefish) – as well as Kaki Fry (battered fried oysters), Fried Chicken Wasabi, and even Fried Cheese Dice, among many others.
It’s difficult to stand out from the sea of competition these days if you’re a new Japanese concept. But Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar combines some of the best ideas from across the whole EN Group and puts them into a single menu here, impressing with a wide array of dishes made with quality ingredients offered at a surprisingly wallet-friendly price.
Ka-EN Grill & Sushi Bar
Address 15 Stamford Road, Arcade @ The Capitol Kempinski Singapore, #01-82 Singapore 178906 (Google Maps link)
Opening Hours 11am to 10pm Sundays to Thursdays and public holidays; 11am to 12mn on Fridays, Saturdays and eve of public holidays
Tel (65) 6284 3788