11 October 2018

Renowned Chef Kihachi Kumagai from Tokyo picks his 29 best creations from 50 years in the kitchen

LUMI, a new borderless restaurant concept by Tokyo’s renowned Japanese Chef Kihachi Kumagai, has opened in Pacific Place. This new dining spot showcases the best flavours and cooking techniques from countries such as France, Japan, Senegal, Morocco and beyond. Making the most out of his Japanese roots, Chef Kihachi creates dishes with western cooking techniques and seasonal ingredients, and he has picked 29 of his favourite dishes for LUMI from over 3,000 creations in his five-decade-long career.

The Story of LUMI

Taking its name from the words "luminous" and "illumination", LUMI presents a menu of vibrant and refreshing dishes to convey the philosophy of "joie de vivre" – the exuberant enjoyment of life. Found in a prime location within the luxury Pacific Place shopping mall, LUMI was conceived by Chef Kihachi to be "a gastronomic experience without borders, with diversified dishes that look and taste good".

LUMI’s beautiful interior isdesigned by prodigious food & beverage interior design firm, Zanghellini & Holt Associates (ZHA). ZHA has created a light-filled space for the restaurant that is reminiscent of a romantic Parisian glasshouse in a garden. A colourful display of petit-fours greets diners at the reception like flowers in the front yard of a residence; the atmosphere of the main dining room is tranquil and welcoming.

Borderless Cuisine

LUMI is the culmination of Chef Kihachi Kumagai’s five-decade-long culinary career. Born in Tokyo in 1946, Chef Kihachi began his journey at the illustrious, three-Michelin-starred Maxims de Paris, before working his way up through various top restaurants and hotels in Paris. In the process he gained experience under celebrated epicurean icons, eventually becoming the late Joël Robuchon’s first Japanese apprentice.

At LUMI, the chef’s cooking style expresses itself from lunch to dinner time. At lunch time, office executives can enjoy a nutritious set lunch at dine-in or have a quick recharge with the convenient Grab & Go service. For those who can afford to linger, the afternoon tea beckons with an assortment of delicate, savoury canapés and sandwiches alongside scones and the restaurant’s signature petit fours. As evening approaches, tea becomes wine, and under the glimmer of the city lights, the restaurant takes on a more intimate mood.

LUMI’s Signature Dishes

The dishes at LUMI have been created with a balance of seasonal ingredients, healthiness, and visual appeal in mind. Appetizers tease the beginning of the meal, with refreshing creations such as the Seared Maguro Salad (HK$150) on a bed of okra, cherry tomato and miso burdock root drizzled with Wakayama dried plum sauce from Japan, and the Shabu Shabu Wagyu Salad with white sesame ginger sauce (HK$190). Highlights in the entrée section include the Sautéed Boston Lobster with 13 distinct spices (HK$300) that is a secret recipe of Chef Kihachi, and the Pan-fried Atlantic Salmon with Onsen Egg, Potato and Shrimp Salad in Lemon Dressing (HK$240), where the salmon has been smoked with sakura wood then pan-fried in the French style. Diners partial to pasta may choose the Spaghettini Glacier with fresh Hokkaido sea urchin (HK$220). This cold pasta recipe is rare to the Hong Kong market and the asparagus ice is shaved table side. Lastly, the dessert menu caps off the culinary journey with tantalizing temptations like the Peach Melba (HK$110), which takes on the flavours of LUMI’s host city.