In the last 2 years, a huge list of pan-Asian restaurants have opened up all over the city, and most of them are doing a great job. The space that was once ruled only by Malaka Spice now has stiff competition from a lot of great places – one of these being Kinki.
Kinki – now that is one interesting name! It is located at the hottest new foodieland in town – Balewadi High Street. Kinki serves a huge range of sushis, dimsums and other pan-Asian fare; apart from a vast menu of molecular cocktails.
Kinki’s USP = MOLECULAR COCKTAILS
First things first, let’s talk about the AMBIENCE.
Not one of those uptight elite restaurants where you have to maintain decorum, but a casual bar wherein you can enjoy a huge range of dimsums and sushis as well as down some fantastic looking cocktails.
Kinki is fun, young & quirky.
It’s a mid-sized restaurant and you have the option to sit indoors as well as outdoors. They have this uber quirky ceiling with plenty of origami birds hanging from the ceilings. It was a sight to behold. Instantly puts you in the mood.
THE KINKI MOLECULAR COCKTAILS
Gone are the days of your classic Margaritas and Cosmopolitans. Now it’s all about drama – smokes, fumes, infusions, dry ice and over-the-top containers – Kinki has it all!
We tried a couple of these beauties including the Tokyo Midtown (the prettiest of them all), The Zen Green Tea (the most creative presentation ever), The Drunken Botanist (strong spiced flavors) and the Phojito (mojito with a twist).
It was great fun experimenting with all of these and each one had a different look, a different drama and a varying flavor profile. But the only one I truly enjoyed flavor wise was the Phojito – fresh and tangy – totally my kinda drink!
THE KINKI DIMSUMS – My heart beats for dimsums! I don’t think I’ve had a bad dimsum. But the ones they serve at Kinki are by far my favorite ones ever. They’ve nailed their dimsum menu – seriously the best ones in town. No other place comes close to Kinki’s delicate dimsum wrappers. I don’t know how they pull off such a fine, thin, melt-in-the-mouth wrapper.
The Cantonese Veg Dimsums comprised of your typical spring roll minced vegetable filling encased in a wrapper so delicate, it looked translucent. If you are a dimsum novice, these are your perfect ‘starter dimsums’. Start with these and you’ll be hooked. A special mention to the smashing pesto sauce and paprika sauce Kinki serves with it’s dimsums.
The Edamame & Truffle oil Dimsums had an absolutely soft velvety mouth – feel (almost pasty I would say) and a delicate flavor. This dish is not for novices, but a good option if you have an experimental palate. I’m a huge fan of these though.
The Mushroom & Water-chestnut Dimsums again had an excellent flavor. These ones have a bite to them, as opposed to the earlier ones with minced fillings.
THE KINKI SUSHI – What started with a total hatred for sushi has long since culminated into an unending love for sushi. The mistake I made was starting off with the wrong kind of the sushi at the wrong place.
If you don’t want to go down the same road, start off with the Asparagus Tempura Sushi at Kinki. This one was perfectly seasoned and had a great crunch from the tempura. It is the perfect option for those who are still hesitant to try Sushi. Begin with this one, and thank me later!
The Veg Avocado Sushi that I tried was pretty good too. Now I won’t say that Kinki serves the best sushi in town, but it does a pretty good job nonetheless.
THE KINKI APPETISERS – The most surprisingly outstanding appetiser I had here was a plate of Spiced Edamame Beans. Given the horrible experience I’ve had with whole edamame beans in the past, this dish was a game changer. That hot plate of beans had the perfect texture and a great mix of spices. I’d highly recommend you give this one a try.
The Veg Harumaki comprised of shiitake, sprouts, leek and carrots in rice wrappers. It’s a great bite to go with your drinks, even though it has a rather conventional flavor profile.Just like a bag of potato chips, you can’t stop at just 1 or 3, for that matter.
Kinki’s Lotus Stems tossed with Sichuan peppers and chilli oil are pretty great too. Perfectly crisp, perfectly thick-cut and the perfect blend of spices.
The Agadashi Tofu which comprised of tofu chunks in a shichimi dasi was a good preparation with the tofu being really soft and juicy. Shichimi dasi is nothing but a Japanese 7 spice mix in a cooking stock.
THE KINKI MAINS – After stuffing ourselves with all of the above, we were only game enough to try 1 main. The perfect Thai Green Curry with Jasmine Rice. This was my first ever jasmine rice and I realised one thing crystal clear.
Thai Green Curry + Steamed Rice = Yummy
Thai Green Curry + Jasmine Rice = Out of this world
You must try this to believe it!
THE KINKI DESSERTS – I don’t have too much experience with Asian desserts, except for those staple Honey noodles, dessert sushi or the current rage, Wasabi ice cream. Kinki had something else in mind though. The Japanese Cheesecake I tried had a great texture and a pretty good berry compote, ensuring that we finished it to the last bite, in spite of being stuffed. I can’t say the same for the Lychee and Berry Baobing though; which can only be described in 1 word – weird. It was totally disastrous, and the only disappointing dish of the entire meal.
THE KINKI EXPERIENCE – With outstanding dimsums, decent sushi, dramatic cocktails, the eye-catching ambience and the perfect location; Kinki is a great option to have a meal. I’d really recommend sitting indoors and enjoy the beautiful ceiling.
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*Disclaimer – This meal was hosted by the restaurant. A huge thank you to Karan Nathani from Iceburg hospitality and Team Kinki for hosting us.