Newly opened Renkon melds traditional Japanese grill cuisine with contemporary dining sensibilities
October 18th, 2018
Launched last month on to Saigon’s increasingly sophisticated restaurant and drinking scene, Renkon stands out with its compelling combination of premium Japanese-inspired food and drinks, striking interior design, and lively vibe. Closely following the recent opening of Sake Central Saigon, local hospitality group The Eight Four Collective have made a bold statement with the subsequent opening of their flagship Saigon venue Renkon. Exuding the informal soul of Japanese izakayas – “a shop to stay and drink sake” – but overlaid with a contemporary attitude – Renkon entices a cosmopolitan local and international crowd with its eclectic concept and polished yet fun service team.
With an impressive portfolio of restaurant design projects that includes Sake Central (Hong Kong and Saigon) and Hong Kong’s Ho Lee Fook and Yardbird, designer-architect Sean Dix adopts a minimalist aesthetic at Renkon with a restrained palette of natural tones expressed with blond wood furniture and raw concrete surfaces, while an Ukiyo-e style mural splashed across the back wall adds a dramatic and colorful highlight. Set across two levels, the upper floor simmers with the scents of the open Japanese binchotan charcoal grill – fronted by the solid terrazzo dining counter. The Renkon culinary team serve up appetizing izakaya dishes exemplified by the Chicken Thigh Skewers coated with house-made shichimi and a splash of lemon, and Pork Meatballs served with egg yolk and tare.
At the lower level, the upbeat bar pulsates with curated hip-hop soundtracks and beverage offerings including Vietnamese craft beer, expertly-curated selections of Japanese shochu, sake, and whisky – plus signature cocktails and wines. Premium sake brands, selected from sibling restaurant Sake Central Saigon’s extensive collection, are served by the bottle or glass.
Regular promotions at Renkon include the Hip-Hop Nights every Friday and Saturday, and a daily 50% off Happy Hour.
Renkon is located with the historic The Refinery compound – at 74/10A Hai Ba Trung, District 1, Saigon. Opening hours are between 5 p.m. and 11:45 p.m. Monday to Sunday.