Roy’s Restaurant: Excellent Butterfish

Our party ordered drinks, appetizers, and the waiter placed a plate of complimentary edamame at the center of the table. A very nice touch.

However, one of my friends pointed out that while Roy’s switched out our white napkins automatically with black ones (see my next post about black napkins on January 15th), they gave us really crappy disposable chopsticks. You know, the very flimsy kind you get at cheapy take out places? Not at all what we would expect from a nice place like this.

Next, our appetizers arrived.

  • Chili & Scallion Crisped Calamari (with sweet Thai chili sauce and Sriracha aioli)
  • Ahi Poke (with Kukui Nut Inamona Jus, Yuzu Infused Sour Cream, Avocado, Tobiko Caviar)

The Calamari was not very well received because lots of places can fry or prepare better calamari (chewy and doughy batter, could barely taste the calamari) but everyone thought the Ahi Poke was just excellent. It was a tad spicy, but it was fresh and very flavorful and the tobiko add just the right amount of crunch, yet more flavor. Order this dish, your taste buds will thank you.

Shortly after our appetizers, our main courses came. Each of us got a different dish, so that all of us can sample the food.

I got the Hawaiian Style Misoyaki Butterfish with Soy Vinaigrette. It came with a scoop of rice, one bok choy, and the butterfish sitting on top of some green beans. Along with the poke, this is one dish I will come back for. I have never had butterfish before, but WOW, this was so delicious!!! The fish just melts in your mouth and the soy vinaigrette goes so perfectly with the fish.

G had the Cherry Stuffed Pork Tenderloin Roulade which came sitting on top of some black rice, served with a side of pea tendrils, a couple of sticks of butternut squash and with a wasabi demi glace. He said that he only tasted the cherry in the last bite, but the dish was delicious.

Another friend had Roy’s Trio which consisted of Hibachi Salmon, Macadamia Nut Mahi Mahi & Misoyaki Butterfish. While he was able to sample all 3 fishes in tiny portions, he later admitted to me that he should have just ordered the Butterfish because that was the most delicious dish he has ever tasted also. Yes folks, it was that good!

His wife had the Shellfish Sampler which consisted of Poached Half Lobster Tail, Crab Cake, U10 Sea Scallop & Shrimp served on top of Macadamia Nut Pesto Risotto. Even though this may be the most fancy dish on paper, it was the most disappointing one. First of all, the dish was very salty. Like someone accidentally salted everything on the plate twice. Secondly, the crab cake was most disappointing because this was the worst tasting crab cake we have ever had. It tasted like it was just pan-fried flour and very mushy. And all of us at the table agreed about this because we tasted the crab cake at least twice to make sure we weren’t being biased. We also tasted the sauce and all agreed that it was very salty. So much potential here, but sadly, star ingredients wasted.

We skipped dessert.

Overall, my recommendation is that if you go, please do yourself a favor and opt for the more Hawaiian-styled seafood dishes like the Butterfish (Excellent!) and the Ahi Poke appetizers (Flavorful!) because I think those are the standout dishes for Roy’s.


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Roy’s Restaurant | 575 Mission Street | San Francisco, CA

4 responses to “Roy’s Restaurant: Excellent Butterfish

  1. Okay.. I am not a calamari fan. I know what’s wrong with me lol. But I love all the other dishes offered here. I mean the food looks amazing. And The atmosphere in this restaurant looks relaxing and sophisticated as well.

    • Hi Kay, Yes, the place is nice and we do like it. Like I said, the Butterfish and ahi poke are excellent examples of what’s to like here. I think every restaurant has star dishes and not so hot items. Depends on the chefs also…on a good night, everything’s just perfect and on an off night, some dishes or service suffers… Glad you enjoy the post. If you like to try Roy’s, the closest one to you is in Baltimore, MD. 🙂

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