Hatsune is our favourite restaurant in Beijing. It was actually the first foreign restaurant that we ever visited after moving here. It has since opened another branch, which is positioned dangerously close to our house. Their Japanese menu is creative, fresh, delicious and every dish is a piece of art.
Room is a relatively new restaurant in Beijing. Their decor is bright and simple, evoking a feeling of space and fun. I’ve eaten there once, and the drinks were fantastic and the food yummy and well-presented.
So, you can imagine that when I saw an ad for Hatsroomie I started jumping up and down in excitement! Brian McKenna (from Room) and Alan Wong (from Hatsune) had prepared a 10-course menu together.
Brian McKenna’s Menu
Appetizer: Shellfish 1-2-3
A mini lobster burger, a freshly cracked oyster with lime and anise star flavoured crushed ice, lightly curried sweet potato soup, coconut foam and marinated shrimp. The crushed ice ‘popped’ in your mouth like those elf chocolates did back home! And this was the first time I’d drunk soup from a test tube!
1st Course: Crab and Avocado
Hand-picked crab meat with crushed avocado, sweetcorn sorbet and basil oil. The most amazing thing I’ve EVER eaten out of a cocktail glass. This was my favourite savoury thing on Brian’s menu.
2nd Course: Salmon and fois gras
Slow-cooked Norwegian salmon with spiced lentils, sauteed fois gras and herb creme fraiche. Fois gras goes surprisingly well with salmon.
Main Course: Beef and Bone
36 hour braised rib of Australian beef with sauteed bone marrow, paris mash and wild mushrooms.
Sweet breakfast (juice/eggs/toast/coffee); Pineapple, rum, coconut flavours; Hard-boiled lemongrass and mango egg; French toast/espresso foam/milk sorbet/coffee crumble. The dessert was out of this world. The concept of eating something that looks like an egg yet tastes like sweet mango is a sensory overload. The ‘coffee crumbles’ added an amazing texture to the foam and sorbet.
Alan Wong’s Menu
Torched unagi and foie gras sushi ball, dashi poached spinach roll with shiitake mushroom and flying fish roe, miso marinated black cod in a lettuce wrap with shredded daikon and gobo root.
The Onsen (Spring Bath):
Lightly poached egg with chilled urchin, sashimi squid, salmon roe and black tobiko caviar in a dashi bath. This was my favourite thing on Alan’s menu. It was a flavour unlike anything I’ve ever tasted before. The texture was smooth and it glided down your throat. The roe and caviar ‘popped’ in your mouth as you sipped the cool, salty ‘soupiness’.
Premium marbled wagyu beef and seasonal vegetables. Sumptious beef. I just didn’t eat enough because by this stage I was getting pretty full and I wanted to save some space for dessert.
Sticky rice and diced Lexie’s cupcake sushi roll topped with almonds and mango chutney; Diced mango, dragonfruit and asian grapefruit in a cookie spoon; Strawberry shortcake in a cookie spoon. Mmmm…. cupcake in a sushi roll. Genius. The cupcakes are from Beijing’s now-famous Lollipop Bakery.