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Despite its location in Regal Airport Hotel and not the actual airport, Airport Izakaya resembles the type of no-frills restaurant you’ll find in a transit hub. The restaurant is spacious for an izakaya — perhaps to leave extra room for diners to stow their baggage at the tables — and quite sterile-looking, due to its dark tile floors. For guests who are craving more privacy, a smaller dining room is available to groups spending more than HK $3,000 — removal of shoes required. Apart from the dining room, the best seats are at the teppanyaki station, where the chef prepares steak and wagyu with impressive flames emanated from a blowtorch.
Perhaps due to its proximity to an import point, the seafood at Airport Izakaya is remarkably fresh. Sampling the day’s freshest seafood catch with a sashimi platter is highly recommended, the decadent batch includes tuna, yellow tail, sweet shrimp, sea urchin and more, presented in gorgeous Japanese pottery. The braised clams are so sweet — and without a trace of staleness — that one can practically taste the sea. An American-influenced dish commonly seen in fusion restaurants, the spider roll is iterated perfectly with top-notch ingredients. The soft shell crab is fried to a crisp but not overly oily, and the sushi rice used is slightly harder than usual — making for a delightful texture combination. For a sumptuous treat, the A4 Kagoshima wagyu beef will leave your taste buds wanting for more. The beef is served on a slice of toast, in order to soak up any excess grease. The sweetness from the wagyu blends in harmoniously with the surrounding handful of dry garlic flakes, a delectable fattiness slowly rising up moments after swallowing. Those who prefer a seafood main course won’t be disappointed with the lobster teppanyaki. The course is presented with the shell surrounding big chunks of moist lobster meat, which pairs harmoniously with slightly citrusy soy sauce.
The restaurant offers a scant wine list — understandably so, since it serves Japanese cuisine. However, the sake list also leaves something to be desired, out of a three-page sake list, only four varieties were available by the glass. The Mizuaoki sake from Gunma, Japan was a light and refreshing beverage to go with the seafood courses.
While polite and very helpful, the staff can be overzealous and slightly interruptive at times. Different waiters would hover around our table and ask if we had any additional requests every few minutes.
Dinner for two came to just over HK $3,000 — a good value considering expensive ingredients such as lobsters and A4 Kagoshima wagyu beef were served.