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  1. We stopped in for a quick dinner at what I suppose is a relatively new addition to the Capitol Hill sushi scene, "Sushi Capitol" on Pennsylvania Ave. SE between 3rd and 4th St. SE. This place is really bare bones - a small place with a handful of 2-top tables and a sushi bar in back. No real decor to speak of, and Japanese pop music playing on a boom box in the back. So far, so good, as it really reminded us of the places we loved back in New York. A pot of hot tea was brought out soon after we sat (a small thing, but not a guarantee since we were brought hot water and a lipton green tea bag at Hikari on H St. NE). We started with a nice version of seaweed salad inexplicably served over ribbons of romaine, and tempura vegetables. A couple of pieces of the tempura were ever so slightly greasy, but most were appropriately crunchy...no major complaints on either of these. The sushi was certainly a level above the quality at Hikari, Sticky Rice, and Nooshi. Based on this one visit, I'd put it below Sushi-Ko, but repeat visits may change that. It was served with freshly grated wasabi, which was a nice touch. A word of warning, the "spicy" rolls look to be served with a heavy dose of mayo, so if that's not your thing, steer clear. They have no liquor license, and I didn't think to ask about their BYO policy, but that is definitely something we'll be inquiring about before our next visit. Bottom line: I love hole in the wall Japanese places, and that may have inflated my opinion here, but I think of the sushi joints in the Capitol Hill hood, I'm putting Sushi Capitol on top.
  2. My cousin was in town for a conference and she comes from a place of very limited restaurant choices so I wanted to take her somewhere different and unique, and I have to say, I crushed it on the restaurant choice! 😉 I mean, how could I go wrong with a Spanish-Japanese mash up?!!? We opted for the omakase meal and we completely blown away from start to finish. Every dish was as beautiful to look at as it was wonderful to taste, and every part of each dish was just fantastic ( there were no throw away components). Shockingly, the place was fairly empty on Thursday night, but I'm hoping that's because it's so new. The only complaint I had was with the lighting. It was too dark to see the beauty of each course without using the light on my phone. When we were leaving the chef was at the host's stand and we raved about the meal for a bit and then, since I had a captive audience, told him my complaint about the low level lighting. He said they just turned the lights down tonight for the first time because the restaurant designer/stylist told him that with the lights turned up it made the place look like a fast food joint! Unfortunately, neither my words, nor the photos do justice to the experience, but here goes. First up was Hamachi/Citrus Dashi/kumquats - we were encouraged to eat the components and drink the broth at the end. Amazing! They could have served the broth alone and it would have been a successful dish! The fish was so tender that I "chewed" it with my tongue! It was also served at the perfect temperature for maximum flavor. Chawanmushi/tempura oyster/seaweed was next, and it was another wonderful combination of tastes and textures. The tempura oysters were topped off with roe and they were great on their own, but the real star was the chawanmushi. I think I could eat a gallon of that stuff! Botan Ebi/ponsu jelly/uni/crème fraiche was the third course and it was another combination a dozen different flavors and textures. We were told to stick the spoon all the way to the bottom and get a bit of each layer. This dish was very hard to photograph, but I included two photos below so you see the layers. Steamed Cod/Gazpachuelo/Potato Trinxat was up next. The description is how it's written on the menu they gave us to take home, but it was described as Black Cod vs. Cod. Either way, it was amazing. Again the cod was tongue-chewable...so tender!! The fish was amazing but the other components were equally impressive the potato thing was shockingly good, as was the foamy broth on the bottom (visible on the left side of the photo). I don't know if that was the gazpachuelo or just part of it, and I don't care! It was fantastic. I'd also like a gallon of it to take home!! Nameko Mushroom Rice/Scallop/Guanciale was next. It also included the soft, internal part of burrata cheese (not visible in the photo below). We were told to mix the rice and burrata together and eat it like that. The scallop was absolutely perfectly cooked and absolutely delicious yet it was the least impressive part of the dish!! The mushroom/rice/burrata combo was mind blowing. SOOOO GOOOOD! The final dish was Quail/Salsify Puree/Foie Gras Escabeche. The quail was very tender and moist and the foie was ridiculously tender (much more so than what I had at Clarity earlier in the week). The salsify was also a surprising hit. I'm not that familiar with salsify, but I'm considering growing it now!! Dessert was a "Gin and Tonic" - I have no idea how to describe this and the photo below is awful. It was a wonderful and unique and had little bits of cucumber in it! Whatever it was, it was a great success! We also got a Winter Citrus Tart/yuzu curd/mandarin sorbet/coconut which was very good, but probably the most standard/least interesting dish of the night. The final little bite (not described on the menu) were two little candies. One was gumdrop type of dish that was good, and the other was combination of miso, caramel and salt. This was an amazing bite! It was one of those dishes that makes you wonder why no one ever combined those flavors before! Fantastic!! I wanted a dozen more! I did the wine pairing which was nice and included a couple sakes, including a rose' sake that got its color from red yeast. Who knew that was a thing! I can't recommend this place highly enough! This was the most interesting and memorable meal that I've had in a long time and two days later, it's still all that I'm thinking about!
  3. Zento opened a few weeks ago in the space previously occupied by Burrito Grill (North Washington near the corner of Wythe St). In addition to the sushi and sashimi menu, they have a variety of teriyaki dishes, ramen, bento boxes, and small plates. We stopped in last night to check it out and were happy with what we tried. They have a happy hour from 5-7pm daily, with a selection of discounted beverages, small plates, and roll combo (2 from a list of 6 varieties for $9.95). The spicy tuna roll and tuna avocado were both very good, with fresh ingredients. Edamame and seaweed salad are pretty standard fare - no surprises there. We shared a sushi/sashimi combo . Other than a few pieces of sashimi that were a touch on the cold side (better than too warm), we had no complaints. Pieces were generous, clean, and well-cut/prepared. Veggie tempura was fresh and hot, with vegetables still fresh and crispy. My only quibble was that it was a touch greasy. We're looking forward to heading back and trying some other things. The dishes we saw at other tables all looked very nice. Service is friendly and efficient. Free parking in the two retail lots with entrances on Pendleton and Wythe Streets (if you pull in somewhere you have to take a ticket, that's the wrong entrance). This has become a decent block to stop for lunch or dinner, with Teaism on one side and Zento on the other.
  4. Just wanted to bump this thread and let people know that Himitsu had its official opening last night. I was lucky enough to attend a preview dinner on Wednesday; raw fish preps and the entire beverage program are absolutely going to be highlights. Not really fair to "review" or critique, as they weren't even really open yet, but multiple plates are priced substantially lower than they should be. Happy to post photos of the menus and / or food if helpful. A super talented young duo, and one that should do quite well in the space. Cheers!
  5. This restaurant just opened up on a relatively dead strip of King Street. The chef is from Kaz. They offer primarily a Japanese set menu, similar to Kaiseke but less delicate. We had dinner there earlier this week and were pretty pleased with the food, particularly since it was opening week. My wife is a pescatarian and they were accommodating with advance notice. Courses consisted of 1: Sashimi platter--scallop, salmon, tuna(lean),grouper,sweet shrimp--the fish was excellent in quality on par with Ogawa in the city and Takumi ( variety was more pedestrian than both), fresh wasabi 2: Probably the most interesting: Lotus and Eggplant Age-Dashi --- Two slices of lotus root sandwiched around a shrimp mousse and two slices of eggplant with crab in the middle--both fried and in a dashi. The lotus root in particular was really good. The eggplant was cooked perfectly and meltingly tender but the crab stuffing was not as good as the shrimp mousse. The dashi needed a bit more salt but was quite good 3: Kurobota pork tenderloin fried in a panko crust with a coated and fried mushroom: The pork was cooked perfectly--just a little rare but overally this was a boring but good dish 4: grilled black cod: this was given to my wife in lieu of the pork--this was the only dish that failed--- fish was overcooked and oversalted 5: In place of the Oxtail Ramen on the menu they gave us Tuna tempura with soba noodle soup. The tuna was fried to a perfect rare and did not overcook in the broth. Broth was tasty. 6: Desert was a Japanese sweet potato custard---this was fine, nothing special. Set menu was $47 a person---very reasonable for the amount of food. We will definitely be back in a month or so after they have been in business a while longer. For Old Town this is a major score given the dearth of non-tourist trap restaurants. The chef is definitely serious about his food and I will happy to see him succeed in this market.
  6. I haven't been for dinner yet, nor ordered off the menu, but the $12 AYCE sushi buffet at lunch is spectacular. Very good fish, cut to an appropriate size with a good proportion of well vinegared rice. A very good selection of fish and rolls, far beyond the usual tuna/salmon/veggie selections. Constantly refreshed - it's a small place, yet 3 chefs were constantly making rolls, and I never saw a single empty tray on the buffet. A few cold/hot noodle dishes, salads, seaweed, etc. Also some pretty decent tempura, including shrimp that were a pretty good size. Price also includes tea and mushroom miso soup. No, this isn't Sushi-Ko/Kaz/etc. It's more like Kotobuki. But it's TWELVE DOLLARS. They lost money on me... P.S. Closed Mondays, no matter what the website says, and at 1:30p today there was a wait (albeit brief) for a table.
  7. I cut the above from Eater, which got the info from Washington City Paper. I think the concept is pretty awesome for people who haven't had a lot of different types of instant ramen and don't have high blood pressure (them instant ramen are generally pretty salty). One can go by and try a couple of packs per meal. It would be even better if they have some veggies and fishballs that can be added in addition to an egg. As an experienced international instant ramen noodle eater, I'd be willing to offer my consulting services for a small fee.
  8. I went for lunch today (Sushi Day!). The yellowtail was flavorful and buttery. The temaki was amazing, it seemed to surpass the regular rolls. The rice on the nigiri was great and held together very well. I don't know if it was a result of the other people in my party being regulars, but the cuts were on the thicker side. The salmon and the toro were solid. I've had better spider roll elsewhere.
  9. My sister wanted to go to Tachibana in McLean, VA for her 28th birthday last week. As much as I tried to steer her towards some of my favorite places for sushi, I eventually succumbed to her choice (it was her birthday after all) and agreed to take her and a couple of her friends there for dinner. The restaurant sits atop a bland-looking Chinese restaurant just off Old Dominion Rd in a neighborhood of hair salons, insurance agents, and dentist offices – your typical suburban office-park hell. But as soon as I walked into the restaurant, I was reminded that I was not in just any suburban city, this was McLean. Beneath the host stand stood a dry erase board listing what’s available or fresh that day. Let’s see … $12.50 for toro, $8.75 for uni, $7.00 for mirugai (giant clam)! Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kotobuki anymore. We decided to share a deluxe nigiri sushi dinner and deluxe sashimi dinner, a few a la carte rolls, and a couple extra appetizers. The dinners come with a choice of soup, a choice of salad, a choice of appetizer and ice-cream/sherbet for dessert. My sister detests miso soup so we opted instead for the osuimono – a clear broth soup with some leafy vegetables and a sliver of chicken meat. The soup itself was fine – a decent briny flavor, but nothing special. And I wasn’t exaggerating about the sliver of meat. The seaweed salad was pretty typical, neither bad nor excellent - but the oshitashi, a boiled spinach salad served chilled with ginger and bonita flakes, was just blah and bitter. Of the appetizers, the tempura was pleasantly light and crisp, unlike the age-dofu (deep fried tofu in a sauce of soy, daikon radish and ginger). A humongous yellowtail jaw broiled in teriyaki sauce was by far my favorite appetizer. The four of us picked every last morsel of sweet and moist meat off the bone. Which brings me to the sushi and the sashimi. When the platter was brought out, I could see why they charge so much. Did this look like the freshest sushi out there? No. But the pieces of fish are colossal! Cut longer and at least three times thicker than usual, the fish dwarfs the pad of rice it sits atop. This can be seen as a good thing and a bad thing. The good – you no longer think you’re getting completely ripped off since you’re getting more product for your $8. The bad - sushi is supposed to be about art and about the balance between the fish and the rice, the wasabi and the soy sauce. These giant slabs of fish certainly throw that way off. However, as sashimi they’re pretty darn tasty! Would I go back? It's not really worth the trip across town for me - especially when I have cheaper options closer to me for the same or better quality. But for those who live around there (and who have the disposable income for it), it's worth a look - if not for its sushi, then at least for its interesting menu.
  10. One of the more pleasant dining experiences, I've had in a long time. The space is simple, clean and serene which is a great reflection of the food. I went early so it wasn't so crowded but I'm guessing that this place will be consistently packed. If you had to try one dish, get the grilled Mero with miso. It's sea bass that has a nice char on the outside but comes out tasting smooth and creamy. My full post is below; Izakaya Seki
  11. Does anyone know when the JINYA Ramen Bar will be opening? They are shown on the Mosaic Center map, but I can't find anything else relating to this new location. Here's the Mosaic portion of their website.
  12. I decided to finally try out Kaz Sushi Bistro (1915 I Street NW). More to the point, this was the first Wednesday I could make it there to get the Maki and Nigiri lunch combo, after learning of it's existance. The combo consisted of a spicy tuna roll, a California roll, and a piece each of maguro, sake, and ebi nigiri. Right from the start, I knew I was on to something good: the little cup of soy sauce was taped to the top to prevent spillage in transit, there were two packets of those little M&M-like mints, and the gari was clearly home-made. Trivial touches, yes, but they're obviously thinking this lunch-special thing through. I like that. It bodes well. On to the main event, the sushi itself was visually very nice, and clearly carefully made. The tuna in particular was the most beautiful shade of deep red. I can say very easily that this was the best sushi I can recall having, in the U.S. and in Japan (Granted, I never went for a hard-core Edomae dinner, but there you go). Incredible. Even the California roll was good. Even the soy sauce was good. They are absolutely not trying to cut corners with the lunch special, and if they are, the stuff right at the bar must be positively mind-blowing. I don't mind saying I was having a pretty insane day at work to this point, but after this lunch, everything seemed good and right with the world.
  13. Takeshi Sushi and Ramen has had a soft opening in Courthouse, at the corner of Wilson and Barton (under Rooftop and next to Delhi Dhaba), where the Subway was for years. We are likely to be regular customers for their terrific tonkatsu ramen. They have not had their official opening yet, so for example, their soda machine had not been delivered yet as of last night (though originally it was supposed to have been there last week, they told us, but the vendor changed the dates at the last minute). They do not have a sign up yet with their name, though you can see Japanese lanterns in the window. According to Arlnow, they will be adding more dishes by the time of their grand opening sometime in June. Currently, the menu has multiple ramen options, some don options (fish or meat or vegetable on top of rice), and a page of sushi options. We had excellent ramen there last night. I had the shoyu ramen as I wanted something very light last night, and it was excellent. The abundant noodles were very good and springy and the broth was light and very tasty. Although I ordered chicken shoyu ramen, they asked if I wanted to try some pork as well, and the pork they put in was so good (better than the chicken pieces, which were perfectly good, but couldn't match the rich flavor of the pork). The toppings included a very nice soft-boiled egg (I think cured or marinated), scallions, a fish cake with a pink swirl on top (I liked it though I wasn't sure what it was at the time - I've had them before in ramen but never looked up what they were - after googling I think it was narutomaki), corn (I wondered if that was a gesture to American palates, but looked up ramen toppings afterwards and it looks like they're often used in Japan), and pieces of lettuce or cabbage (that seemed unusual to me and I didn't end up eating them, but again I see on looking it up that cabbage is not an uncommon topping in Japan). From the pictures on yelp, it looks like they sometimes have microgreens on top. My husband had the tonkotsu ramen, which is what I tend to order at ramen places, and it was outstanding, creamy and rich and flavorful and delicious. I will get that next time and we are definitely going back. We both tipped our bowls to get the last of our broths. They asked if we wanted our ramen spicy, and neither of us eat spicy food (I eat a little spicy food but not last night), so we declined. Another customer got the spicy ramen and they asked him how spicy - he said medium this time and he'll see if next time he wants more. That customer also got some avocado-topped sushi. I must admit that for sushi, I will not be your reviewer, as I am not a raw fish eater and generally stick with Boston rolls (which they have on their menu), eel (which they have), other rolls with cooked shrimp/crab/lobster, and tamago. But I hope to go with a friend who loves sushi and hear what she says. The owner or manager was friendly and chatted with us a bit, and told us that the chef had trained to make ramen (and sushi, I think) in Japan. The owner and chef apparently moved here from Japan not that long ago, and this is their first restaurant in America. https://www.arlnow.com/2019/05/24/takeshi-sushi-and-ramen-now-open-in-courthouse/
  14. Takohachi opened on December 11 in the Westmont Shopping Center at the corner of Columbia Pike and S. Glebe Road. My wife and I decided to eat lunch there today to test this new dining option after reading several positive comments from our neighbors on the Douglas Park community bulletin board. Owned and run by a Japanese chef, the space is simple and open (in the good Japanese way), with plenty of space between the tables and contemporary Japanese music playing softly in the room. We ordered from the lunch menu, which offered everything from Nigiri Shushi (at $1 per piece), to a number of Udons, Donburis and a large selection of Bento Boxes. We each ordered a Bento - Marianne had the California Roll and Spiced Tuna, I ordered the Sukiyaki. Both came with Tea, Miso Soup, Salad and a Shrimp and Vegetable Tempura portion in addition to the aforementioned Mains. All I can say is that if the quality of our lunch is the baseline for the other items on their menu, this is now our go-to spot for Japanese in South Arlington. They don't have an active social media profile, or a website yet. Here's hoping they can grow thru word of mouth - I want to be able to come back often. TSchaad
  15. For anyone working in the Chinatown area, Reren Lamen has temporarily popped-up in the old Mehak restaurant. I think another ramen place will be there eventually.
  16. Over by China Star is Blue Ocean. It's a rarity in the nova burbs. A Japanese restuarant run by Japanese. The result is really fresh sushi, really amazing "little plates" (most of which are on a secret japanese only menu that get carried around the restuarant and put in front of the table for those that can speak it) Real Ramen and a whole bunch of dishes I haven't seen anywhere in the area like kama meshi. I've had decent luck with getting the english name off of here http://www.blueocean-sushi.com/ala/ala_eng...ategory=seafood and asking for it. Sometmes they have it and know what I'm talking about and sometimes I get odd looks. It's worth a try though when you get things like kakuni which is the best pork roast I think I've ever had. It's right between the Trader Joes and the Chuck E Cheeses for those familiar with the area, right off of 236 on your way into fairfax city proper coming from the beltway.
  17. I followed GPS into the Old Crossing Center, across from the insane Alto Plaze. While the latter looks like a run down strip joint or something from Disney World after the apocalypse, Old Crossing is seemingly zombie free and is home to more restaurants than almost anywhere I can think of in the DMV. Certain blocks of 14th street might compete but they do not have a huge Super H Mart! So for su, I drove the entire mall with my video on so I could capture the names of all the restaurants. At some point I ill see if my video can be uploaded. Tomo 2 spots I could not read the names of Ihop Jang Won Chinese Korean CheoGaJip Chicken Super H Mart with a food court and a pharmacy where you can get your statin perscription refilled Honey Pig Korean Red Ginseng which I think is a herbalist not a restaurant Danji Papa Johns LuLu Cafe Eul Shi Gae Dairy Queen Las 3 Regiones Gom E Tang Gom Shabu Shabu Little Italy Deli Red Rocks Tequila Bar and Grill New Great Wall Evergreen Korean Plus several beauty shops, an ice store, banks, travel agencies, bike shops, laundromat etc etc etc. Having re-watched my video, I think it wiser not to upload it in the interest of preventing motion sickness or accusations that I was drunk. I drove thru three neighboring shopping centers and there were another 20 or so restaurant with juxtapositions as a Kabob restaurant sharing the center with an Indian, Vietnamese, A Smoothie place, several american fast food icons etc. To anyone in Centreville or adjacent to whom my previous knowledge of Centreville was that is was somewhere "out there" {with me waving my hand vaguely not in the direction of Centreville, showing my ignorance had multi dimensions,} I apologize. I think my retirement will include a lot of meals in the area. A LOT.
  18. Having gone to Kaz Sushi Bistro countless times over the years, I was interested in seeing what Sushi Chef Jay Yu, who spend 13 years working alongside Kaz at the sushi bar, would be up to in his brand new restaurant in Falls Church, which opened just last Thursday, Dec 10th. It's located right in-between Smashburger and the under-appreciated Meat in a Box. An important note to diners: Takumi will not have a beer and wine license "for about a month," so do not go there expecting to have a Sapporo with your sushi just yet. Another thing: they are currently using a temporary menu which they stress will be changing in about a week. "It's full of typos, and it's embarrassing," a server told me. So please keep those two things in mind if you go anytime soon. I took a seat at the sushi bar Tuesday evening, and ended up feeling like I was at a Kaz Sushi Bistro family reunion: My server works at Kaz, the girl who told me about the menu worked for Kaz, Chef Yu worked next to Kaz (on the diner's right), and - this is possibly the most important thing I'm going to tell you - the Kitchen Chef at Takumi was the *other* sushi chef who worked next to Kaz on the diner's left (I've never known his name, but he's an older gentleman called Taka-san - he has chosen to switch over to being a full-time kitchen chef due to the rigors of endless standing). I was told that for now, Kaz is sending out one different employee a day to help them get started, and Kaz himself stopped in to wish them well on opening day. Isn't it heartwarming to see such a display of generosity and gratitude? And for those worried about the future of Kaz Sushi Bistro, have no fear: he will soon be signing another long-term lease, and is training some younger sushi chefs, as well as working on bringing over some people from Japan - although we've only written each other, I could "feel" an obvious energy and enthusiasm in his notes to me that I haven't felt from him in quite awhile. His biggest concern seems to be the impending arrival of Nobu, which will be located somewhere around 25th and M in quite a large space. Have no worries, Kaz-san - you're a DC institution. I started my meal with a pot of Caffeine-Free, Yellow and Blue, Herbal Tea ($4.50), a chamomile and lavender tisane by Harney and Sons, a very reputable producer of upscale teas, and this carried me through the meal. Browsing through the menu, I noticed some definitely influences and a few very similar dishes than what I've seen at Kaz Sushi Bistro in the past - I was determined to try some of these to compare them, and to see what Chef Yu could do untethered from the mother ship. Sitting next to a woman I correctly guessed was a Yelper, she had ordered the Flounder Carpaccio with Wakame and Yuzu Sauce ($12), and when asked how she felt about it, she came right out and said it wasn't to her liking. This was one of the things I was thinking of ordering, so I told them (nobody else was within earshot) that I'd be glad to take it, and for them to just put it on my bill. This was five fairly thin slices of flounder sashimi, topped with a thick, almost nutty, paste of wakame and yuzu. I thought there were a couple things about this dish that could have been improved upon, and when Chef Yu asked me, I answered him politely, but candidly - this was probably the one dish I had that needs a mild tweaking, but it doesn't need much: The issues I pointed out could be fixed in five minutes. My first dish was a Consommé of Asari ($6), asari being baby clam, sitting on the bottom of the bowl of clear broth, in-shell. This was a delicious consommé, and one that I would happily get again. It was just the right thing to start off a meal with. In something of a contrast to the consommé, I also ordered the Agedashi Tofu with Mushroom ($5), the definition of comfort food: soft, silky cubes of tofu, barely dusted, and wok-fried with plenty of enoki-like mushrooms, and a hot, thickened brown sauce on top. I loved this dish, and highly recommend it to anyone trying Takumi - the only thing I can think of that might improve the dish is if the amount of sauce was dialed down just ten percent; other than that, it was a gift at five dollars. This is one dish that I would strongly urge people to order. Having had the bird's nest at Kaz several times, I had to get the Bird's Nest ($14) here, and it did not disappoint while at the same time being noticeably different than the one at Kaz. Made with sea urchin, calamari, a very light application of truffle soy sauce, and topped with a quail egg, this dish is made to be mixed together before attacking it, and no soy sauce is needed, although this particular rendition was intentionally light on the soy, so I can easily see diners sneaking a few additional drops into the mix. Although there was nothing fattening in here, it came across as almost decadently rich, and despite its moderate size, was quite filling - sea urchin and egg yolk as thickeners in sauces have a tendency to do that. I was pretty full at this point, but I hadn't had a bite of sushi rice, and wanted to end my meal with a maki, so I ordered the Negitoro Roll ($8), made with fatty tuna and scallion, and I'm delighted to report that the sushi rice here is outstanding. I've always thought that Kaz consistently had the best sushi rice in the city, and this rice is a worthy contender. Sushi rice is such an important component of great sushi, yet it often goes unnoticed or unappreciated; not with me - this was first-rate sushi rice, and those many, many years of experience certainly showed up here. Highly recommended. Stuffed, I asked for the check, but Chef Yu offered me a dessert (I think he was pleased that I didn't waste the carpaccio, and that I seemed to have some degree of appreciation for what he has done). I had mentioned before that I liked yuzu, so he sent out a tulip glass of Yuzu Sorbet ($4) which I didn't think I wanted, but right after the first bite of that ice-cold, citrus-flavored sorbet, I knew it was the perfect digestif for this ample-but-healthy meal. When the check arrived, neither the sorbet nor the carpaccio were on it - I protested, saying I wanted to pay for the carpaccio, but they insisted that it was on the house, so I tried to make up for it with a generous tip. Although you can tell that this is a brand-new restaurant, only a few days old, Takumi also shows great promise, and is already one of the best sushi houses in Virginia (if not the best). It will improve a lot as the next few weeks pass, but I also fear that in the long run, Chef Yu may grow frustrated at serving nothing but California Rolls (I mentioned this to him, and he just laughed it off). Takumi is absolutely influenced by Kaz Sushi Bistro, and I believe that, with time, this restaurant will make the master proud.
  19. +1. Based on my meals this weekend, Tori Shin blows Yakitori Totto out of the water. My only gripe: you can only get the "special skewers" (kidney, heart, knee gristle, neck, oyster, etc.) if you order the $50 meal.
  20. [posted on eGullet 2003-2004] Trio of Burgundy Sorbet In his New Years Eve fervor, Koji had decided to make a dessert with Champagne, and then he realized that they have tons of Burgundy on the wine list. Hence this dessert, a fitting ending to the brilliant savory courses at Sushi-Ko (this evening was the inauguration of the soup with grilled hirame and steamed ankimo, served with baby spinach in a broth brilliantly thickened only with kuzu starch). The trio begins with an aspic of sparkling white Burgundy - a 2001 Michel Frères Blanc de Blancs - which Koji had to special-order, served with peeled and macerated white grapes. The charming server Kiyomi (who, out of sheer coincidence, happens to be Koji's wife!), threatened a lawsuit against me if I didn't completely finish each sorbet as I would logically progress in a Burgundy tasting: sparkling, white, and then red, the latter two wines being on their by-the-glass list. The White Burgundy aspic with White Burgundy sorbet was made with the 2003 Rijckaert Hautes Cotes de Nuits "Aux Herbeux," and the Red Burgundy aspic with Red Burgundy sorbet uses the 2001 Jean-Jacques Girard Bourgogne. This little burst of inspiration is a perfect ending to a meal of raw fish, and will set you back $7.50. Which brings me to Komi. (Subject change). But it's not really a subject change, because the first time I ever met the great chef Johnny Monis was at Sushi-Ko, where Koji introduced us. And it's not surprising that Komi is one of Koji's favorite restaurants, and it's also not surprising that the first time I met Sebastian Zutant was at the bar at Nectar, because there's a common thread running through all this: if the words elegance, finesse, detail, lightness, and complexity strike a chord with you, then Koji, Johnny, Sebastian, and our beloved duo Jamison Blankenship (whom we just lost to Bouley) and the immensely talented Jarad Slipp are already in your basic repertoire. Cheers, Rocks.
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