Another coup for Hong Kong’s Keyaki Group, Shiba takes the family of restaurant’s typical Japanese izakaya cuisine to Kennedy Town. Formally, Shiba is a kushiyaki restaurant, serving grilled skewers similar to the more familiar yakitori style. Shiba is also in possession of one of the city’s most comprehensive selections of sake, offering over 30 different types by the glass alongside some weird and wonderful craft beers – white truffle and wasabi count among the many flavours available – that will have Hong Kong hopheads crowding into Shiba’s diminutive premises in the May Sung Building along Smithfield.
Just a block from the water and a few blocks north along Smithfield from Kennedy Town station, Shiba is immediately recognisable by virtue of its traditional Japanese facade – wooden latticework and bamboo blinds shielding an interior whose textured wooden walls and dimly-lit mood perfectly recalls the style of back-alley Tokyo izakaya of which Hong Kong’s Keyaki Group of bars and restaurants are veritable specialists.
Some will make reservations at Shiba for the food – kushiyaki and yakitori predominates – while other Hong Kong gourmands will come for the incredible selection of sake and shochu, whose oversized bottles crowd the walls of Shiba’s tiny Kennedy Town location. Some of the city’s more esoteric craft beers can also be found here, with the curious mango or wasabi-infused brews clear highlights, while some of the best sake on offer are imported directly from a specialist producer in Niigata prefecture. Order a drink and rustle up some skewers: we recommend the combination of the ume-shiso chicken, dried fugu, and Kyushu sweet potato.
The food is excellent and well prepared. Staff is friendly but not very experienced and it showed in their service level. A good places for friends or casual dining, but the space is not well suited for business or romantic evening. It is good they offer special deals, otherwise it would be "pricey". I will repeat, with different expectations this time.
Shona offers great food in an authentic Japanese environment. They have a fantastic sake selection and the staff give friendly service. My favourite Kennedy Town restaurant.
Great selection of Sake. Must take advantage of the 1/2 price bottled sake after 21:30 :) Good service from the staff. Food selection is well edited with a few daily specials.