Contemporary Japanese restaurant Honjo in Hong Kong’s Sheung Wan tastefully puts together Japanese-inspired bites and cocktails in a glamorous modern Oriental setting.

Hong Kong is a culinary paradise, and a city that’s abundant with almost any kind of cuisine a gastrophile could possibly want or think of. Hankering for contemporary Japanese cuisine? There are plenty of options to choose from. But Honjo, in Hong Kong’s colourfully eclectic Sheung Wan district, is a dining gem absolutely worth checking out.

First, a caveat. Honjo isn’t authentically Japanese the way one may expect a traditional Japanese restaurant to be. Instead this modern Japanese concept from Hong Kong’s Pirata Group reimagines classic Japanese favourites while borrowing flashes of influence from other cuisines and cultures for an exotically fun dining experience. Think Peruvian-Japanese Nikkei cuisine, but with a culinary net cast far wider.

As you might expect from a more laissez-faire approach, Honjo’s wide-ranging and eclectic menu offers something for everyone. Start with some fun appetisers – rice crackers topped with tuna tartare, for example, or soft shell crab tempura. The beef tetaki, drenched in tosazu and chorizo oil, comes highly recommended.

Desire some raw delights? There are sushi and sashimi platters of various sizes with a range of select bites to chew on (or you can have them a la carte). Or dig into some oysters, if you so desire.

But it’s the hot food section at Honjo that puts the modern in its modern Japanese cuisine, particularly its grilled selection that offers almost every meat protein flourished with inspired saucing. The lamb chops here, seared to perfection, are absolutely delightful.

The best way to truly enjoy Honjo? The restaurant offers two omakase tasting menus, ‘The Dreamer’ and ‘The Time Traveller’, comprising some of its most popular dishes with an option for wine and sake pairing to match. Another way is to drop in for lunch for its executive lunch set, which allows you to customise your own four-course meal. In fact, Honjo’s well-priced lunch sets draw often working executives, housewives and tourists alike looking for a more indulgent lunch.

In the evenings, Honjo transforms into an altogether different animal. Its tastefully Oriental interiors and become darker and more subdued. More intimate. The music changes too, more club-like. Here’s when it attracts a totally different set, young Hong Kongers on a date or having a fun night out with friends over some good eats and cocktails.

They may not even realise that the vintage toy robots scattered around Honjo – from which its logo is derived – harkens to the Hong Kong’s golden age of toy making during the ’50s and ’60s.

[Photos courtesy of Honjo | Pirata Group]

Honjo (Hong Kong)

Address 1/F, 77-91 Queen’s Rd W, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong (Google Maps link)
Opening Hours 12pm to 2.30pm and 6pm to 12am Mondays to Fridays; 11.30am to 3pm and 6pm to 12am on Saturdays and Sundays
Tel (852) 2663 3772
Instagram @honjohk


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