Roy's Hawaiian Fusion

Categories: SOMA
I was invited to try the Fall Prix Fixe Menu currently on offer at Roy's, the high-end "Hawaiian fusion" restaurant chain started 20 years ago in Honolulu by Chef Roy Yamaguchi. A plate of edamame dipped in black sesame, sea salt and chili flakes got to the table right after we did. I was spared my usual annoyance at the many places that serve these soybeans warm and overcooked; they were thankfully chilled and al dente, preserving that nutty flavor. It wasn't long before we were sampling both of the first course selections, a roasted corn and sweet potato chowder good enough to slurp, and tiger prawns wrapped in tangy prosciutto with a buttery goat cheese polenta.

112120081434.jpg 112120081437.jpgWe expected to fight over my huge plate of salmon, Hibachi grilled and cloaked in a topping of creamy Crab "dynamite," but a spicy Asian pepper and lemongrass sirloin in cognac peppercorn sauce competed valiantly. The pair made for a good surf and turf combo. There are also two other main choices, an Island-style braised pork pot roast (which is the most popular and was sold out before we arrived) and barbecued Hawaiian Kai beef short ribs.

112120081440.jpgStrawberry cobbler wore an apron of white chocolate polka dots, and while I'm a sugar fiend that rarely utters this phrase, it was just too sweet. A molten, flourless chocolate cake quickly redressed that balance, and I found myself wishing the portion sizes on the two were reversed.

112120081444.jpg112120081445.jpgPriced at $35 for three courses, it's a good value--particularly so when compared to the restaurant's own menu, which has several main courses that are priced over $30. And while winter falls before the end of the month, this deal extends through December 31. Roy's is located at 575 Mission (at 2nd St.). --Tamara Palmer

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