July 11, 2020

10-nen buri

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Another weekend where we felt that we should eat out a little more, but hadn't gotten our act together to book something with advanced notice.  Thinking that none of the usual suspects would have availability, I decided to call up Ishiyama (石山) to try our luck.  Thankfully they could still fit us in despite the social distancing measures that went into effect today.

For a few months ago 10 years ago, this was my "alternate" izakaya when I wanted something different.  However, I have pretty much forgotten about this place until late last year when I met the owners at a dinner.  I'm glad I dug it out of the back of my mind once again.

Hello Kitty was pretty happy to munch on these babylonia simmered in soy sauce.

Marinated firefly squid (蛍烏賊沖漬け)

Koya tofu (高野豆腐) - always love the texture, which is like Chinese frozen tofu (凍豆腐) but soaked with sauce.

Corn tempura (とうもころし天ぷら) - so, soooo happy to have these.

In retrospect, we probably should have ordered another serving... since we both love corn.

Beer-marinated radish (大根のビール漬け) - these were really good.  Served chilled so that they remain crunchy, these were refreshing thanks to both the acidity and the cool temperature.  Perfect for balancing out all the grease from deep-fried food that I like to order.

Deep-fried minced cutlet with spring onions (ねぎミンチカツ) - we were told that this was a popular item here, and it was easy to see why.  The minced chicken meatball was very juicy, and of course the crunchy, deep-fried batter on the outside was tasty, too.  Very satisfying, but also pretty filling.

Kakiage (かき揚げ) - one of my favorite things to eat.  There's something about a big ball of shredded vegetables that's been battered and deep-fried.  Sooooo sinful.

Deep-fried icefish (白魚唐揚げ) - YASSSS!!! More deep-fried food!  These icefish were just sooooo crunchy!

Hiroshima pancake (広島焼き) - I remember ordering this the last time I was here, and I really wanted to taste the seaweed on top...

What I forgot was how stuffed I got when I ate this at the end of the meal... even though there wasn't too much batter and it was mostly layers of cabbage.

I brought along a bottle of sake and happily paid the reasonable corkage.

Tamanohikari Black Label (玉乃光  純米大吟醸 Black Label) - seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 35%, made with 100% Bizen Omachi (備前雄町). Initially served too warm, which made it spicy on the palate. Nose was slightly on the fermented side. When properly chilled this seemed slightly sweeter on the attack, and rather balanced on the palate with a long finish. Unfortunately somewhat one-dimensional. Not my style, and needs to be served pretty cold for my liking.

When it came time to get the bill, the number on the paper seemed ridiculously low. True, we didn't order anything expensive - mostly little dishes and a lot of it was veggies.  But even with the addition of corkage, it seemed much too reasonable.  I was told that they hadn't raised their prices in 6 years.  Well, I decided I should just round it up to the big figure and leave a reasonable tip.

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