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New eats: Celebrating Songkran, Edomae-style sushi and a beef and beer blowout

If there’s one thing we know about Hong Kong’s dining scene, it’s that there’s always an occasion to celebrate, be it a holiday or the arrival of a celebrity chef in town. This month, the upcoming Thai Songkran brings us a special menu of regional home-style dishes at SoHo eatery Soul Food; while over at Edomae-style sushi counter FUMI, all eyes are on a very special visiting guest chef from Japan. Finally, those hankering after beef and booze will want to make a beeline for Rhoda, where two pit masters are ready to throw the ultimate beer and BBQ bash. Here’s where to feed your appetite this week.

Songkran arrives at Soul Food

This month, the Thai Songkran Festival brings reasons for feasting.

As Thailand prepares for Songkran (13–15 April), Hong Kong is joining in the New Year’s festivities with holidays menus around town spanning a range of delicious Thai eats. For a guaranteed good time, head to Soul Thai in SoHo, where the kitchen has prepared four new dishes inspired by different regions of Thailand and the home-cooked food normally prepared for family reunions during this time.

From the north, you can enjoy a fresh lettuce wrap of beef larb teeming with the region’s ubiquitous spices and fresh herbs (HK$118); or head to Isaan to drink in a complex spicy and sour pork rib soup infused with the aromatics of roasted rice and lemongrass (HK$118). From the Central plains, there’s a tantalising version of coconut lon made with a generous portion of sweet crabmeat and grilled prawns. Finally, the southern coast brings in fresh seafood with spicy grilled squid bearing the bright zest of mandarin and lime juice (HK$98). Wash it all down with Soul Food’s signature beer slushie served from the barrel — the perfect cooling agent to counteract the hot and spicy flavours.

Soul Food Thai, 26-30 Elgin Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2177 3544

Butchery, Beef, Beer & Blues 

Two meat experts meet at Sai Ying Pun grillhouse, Rhoda.

Sai Ying Pun smokehouse Rhoda has been known to throw some pretty fantastic BBQ bashes in the past, but this one may beat out the rest with double the star power — an evening of butchery, beef, beer and blues helmed by two of the city’s great meat experts. For one night only on Wednesday, 18 April, chef Nate Green from Rhoda will be teaming up with chef Paddy McDermott of SoHo’s MEATS for a pop-up dinner that’s sure to appease meat lovers. Feast on various cuts of premium Ashdale Beef, roasted slow over the fire until mouthwateringly tender, served with sumptuous sides such as charred corn on the cob, BBQ beans, coleslaw and spicy potato wedges. Accompanied by local craft beer and live tunes from Sai Kung-based band, Pineapple Jam, we can’t think of a better way to cure mid-week blues.

Tickets are HK$545 and can be purchased via Ticketflap

Rhoda, G/F, Upton, 345 Des Voeux Road West, Sai Wan, Hong Kong, +852 2177 5050

In the era of Edomae sushi

Visiting guest chef Aoki Toshikatsu will showcase exquisite Edomae-style sushi at FUMI. 

Those seeking an authentic omakase experience should look no further than FUMI this month, the latest Japanese restaurant to open in LKF’s California Tower. Guest chef Aoki Toshikatsu of the acclaimed Ginza SUSHI AOKI in Tokyo will be making an anticipated appearance from 19–21 April to showcase his signature Edomae-style sushi, highlighting the meticulous techniques and detailed preparation born of decades of experience. Chef Aoki will be personally crafting sushi tableside, sharing insights on the evolution of sushi while preparing his artistic dishes.

Expect a marathon 16-course menu which includes delicacies such as marinated chutoro, smoked firefly squid with ‘sakura scent’, eel terrine, egg custard in icefish with kinome soy sauce, three kinds of sea urchin, and sea urchin and eel risotto. The menu will also cast a spotlight on the fermented and marinated ingredients that are central to the Edomae-style sushi experience — think dishes such as prawn and vinegared egg yolk and gently pickled mackerel — as well as 12 pieces of exquisite nigiri sushi from rosy seabass with dried mullet roe to marinated tuna wrapped in seaweed.

Lunch menu priced at HK$1,380 and dinner menu at HK$2,550; prices subject to 10% surcharge. 

FUMI, 6/F, California Tower, 30–36 D’Aguilar Street, Central, Hong Kong, +852 2328 3302 

Leslie Yeh
Editor in Chief
Having worked as a lifestyle editor for almost 10 years, Leslie is thrilled to be writing about the topic she loves most: wining and dining. When she's not out pounding the pavement for the latest new restaurant opening or tracking food trends, Leslie can be found at home whipping up a plate of rigatoni vodka and binge-watching Netflix with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc in hand.