Akira Back at JW Marriott Singapore South Beach has recently revamped their weekend brunch with a new menu revolving around eight dishes that can be personalized to one’s preference. This is a slight departure from the previous weekend brunch concept at Akira Back which had four mains, two desserts and free-flow tempura. Given the venue’s Korean-inspired Japanese cuisine, Akira Back’s brunch menu deviates from your usual Japanese meal. You’ll find pizza interspersed with chirashi, spring chickens to go along with tempura – slight accents to separate it from your usual Japanese affairs.
With the revamped brunch menu and addition of two more courses, the price remains the same at S$98. Those who prefer variety would find the revamp more compelling.
First Course – AB Pizza
The brunch starts off with Akira Back’s signature AB Pizza and diners can choose between tuna or mushroom. Better yet, why not get the best of both worlds and make it half tuna and half mushrooms? This is one of my favorite dishes at Akira Back and I’ve been having this each visit (my third time so far). The AB Pizza is like an exaggerated version of your skinny pizza – the crust is even thinner than whatever you can find elsewhere which gives it a nice crunch. The tuna is drizzled in fragrant truffle oil and I totally dig the idea of how light this dish is. It stands well as a starter and you can have a number of slices without overfilling yourself before the mains arrive.
Second Course – Zensai
The next course is the salad of the day or alternatively, miso soup. It changes each time and during my visit, I got this nicely wrapped spinach. Although nicely presented, it wasn’t entirely memorable.
Third Course – Sakana
There is also a dedicated course to sashimi or sushi so you can make sure you get your money’s worth. This is a most welcome change to Akira Back’s weekend brunch menu. Previously, there was no sashimi platter included. Guests can essentially choose three types between Tamago, Tako, Unagi, Salmon, Hamachi and Tuna. Since I was dining with a couple of other people, we were able to try all. The sashimi came incredibly fresh – plump and tender slices that earned everyone’s approval.
Fourth Course – Agemono
Another change in the weekend brunch menu is the tempura platter which is now relegated to one course. Previously, this was free-flow. If you ask me, I’d take a sashimi platter over tempura any day. Fried items are usually hard to eat in large quantities and I can’t get beyond devouring a few pieces without feeling bloated. Anyway, I digress. Diners get to choose three types among white fish, ebi, soft shell crab, eggplant, sweet potato and shitake. I am not much of a tempura fan but I liked that crispness of the batter as well as the wide variety to choose from.
Fifth Course – Palate Cleanser
Before proceeding to the mains, guests are served a palate cleanser which comes in the form of either sour cherry champagne with ume granita or passionfruit sorbet. I chose the former which was delightfully sour, just right to prepare me for the heavier dishes.
Sixth Course – Main
There are four types of mains to choose from and these are Hamachi Kama (Grilled Yellowtail), Spring Chicken, Chirashi Donburi and Shio Koji Rib Cap (Beef). I got to taste all four of them and if you are wondering which main you should order, I would rank the Shio Kohi Rib Cap as my number one choice followed by the Hamachi Kama as second. The beef was a popular choice and did not disappoint with its unbelievably tender meat. The fibers collapse as soon as you sink your fork into the individual chunks.
The Chirashi Donburi is actually a fantastic dish with generous amounts of tuna, salmon and yellowtail chunks. The reason why I don’t recommend this as a main is because the brunch already comes with a sashimi/sushi course as well as a separate carbohydrate course at the end. The presence of these two courses render the chirashi potentially redundant when taken into the context of a meal.
Seventh Course – Rice
The carbohydrate dish is usually left off as one of the last courses and diners get to choose between the Hosomaki Roll or Garlic Fried Rice. I thought the garlic fried rice was fragrant enough to be eaten on its own but unless you are still hungry, I would recommend the Hosomaki Roll as it’s a lighter option.
Eighth Course – Mizumono
Diners are able to choose between two desserts that change each week. During my weekend brunch experience at Akira Back, I had the matcha sphere. It possesses the type of visual appeal that I’d imagine would do nicely on social media. Inside, it differs from your usual matcha-based desserts with its yuzu chocolate / strawberry compote core. In fact, this dessert was more on the sour side (from the strawberry and yuzu chocolate) than the bitterness that its green exterior suggests.
Akira Back’s weekend brunch is available every Saturday and Sunday from 12PM to 3PM. It is priced at S$98++ and comes with eight courses and your choice of drink.
JW Marriott Singapore South Beach
30 Beach Road
Tel Number: +65 6818 1914