January 30, 2021

Supporting restaurants: Japanese seafood lunch

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It's been a couple of month since we last met up with the Film Buff, and much to my surprise, he requested that we do Japanese food for a change.  Given the preference for cooked dishes, I figured it would be a great opportunity to introduce him to Godenya (ごでんや).

It's been only a month since my last visit, and I wondered how many of the dishes would be repeats.  Thankfully, the dish which I would have wanted as a repeat did show up...

Monkfish liver, thousand-year old egg, kumquat, monaka (鮟肝  皮蛋  金柑  最中) - always happy to start with this taiyaki (鯛焼き) monaka (最中).  The filling made with the liver of monkfish (鮟鱇) from Yoichi (余市) and century eggs (皮蛋) always carries that delicious, smoky flavor.  This time we've got Japanese kumquat (金柑) adding wonderful citrusy notes.  The red perilla leaves and crunchy curry leaves on top added some nice aromatics.

Iseno Shiroki Junmai Nama Sparkling (伊勢の白酒 純米生活性), 2BY - served at 10°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 65%.  Good acidity along with sweetness, like lactic acid.  Fizzy on the tongue.

Snow crab, akagai, tairagai, kobashira (松葉蟹  赤貝  平貝  小柱) - pretty interesting mix of shellfish, with a range of textures.  The ark shell (赤貝) came from Oita Prefecture (大分県), the pen shell (平貝) from Aichi Prefecture (愛知県), and the mactra clam adductor muscles (小柱) came from Hokkaido. The kitchen also mixed it up by adding chunks of celeriac which had been cooked.  The sauce made with crab tomalley (蟹味噌), vinegar, and egg yolk was pretty interesting.

Sakurafubuki Junmai Daiginjo 50 (桜吹雪  純米大吟醸50), 2020 - served at 13°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 50%.  Sweet on the attack.  Round on the palate with noticeable viscosity.  Good depth on the palate and nice finish, and the finish was a little more dry later on.

Soba, shirauo, karasumi, spinach (蕎麦  白魚  唐墨  ちぢみほうれん草) - I was kinda surprised when Hello Kitty asked me whether I liked this dish, because with ingredients like ice fish (白魚) and salted mullet roe (唐墨), what's not to like?!  This was a lovely and refreshing dish, where there was hardly any seasoning in the fish coming from Lake Shinji (宍道湖) from Shimane Prefecture (島根県) and the salt was provided by the grated mullet roe while the chijimi spinach (ちぢみほうれん草) - both fresh and dried - added a little sweetness.

Kazenomori Yamada Nishiki Junmai Ginjo Ikakitori (風の森 山田錦 純米吟醸 笊籬採り), 2019 - served at 12°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 60%.  Nose was a little fermented like fermented rice lees.  Sweet on the attack and very soft on the palate.

I thought this particular sake pairing was wonderful, as the sweet sake balanced out the salt from the mullet roe. 

Japanese Spanish mackerel, yari-ika, syogoin turnip (鰆  槍烏賊  聖護院蕪  金時人参  山葵) - such a beautiful dish.  We had the tasty grated Shogoin turnip (聖護院蕪) on top, along with some fragrant sansho leaves (木の芽).  There were also chunks of Kintoki carrots (金時人参) which had this lovely, bright red hue.

Underneath the mash, there were two slices of Spanish mackerel (鰆) from Hyogo Prefecture (兵庫県) which were torched on the skin side to deliver smoky flavors, but they were barely cooked.

At the bottom we had slices of egg-bearing spear squid (槍烏賊) from Aomori Prefecture (青森県).

Mukyutenon Namamoto Junmai Daiginjo Tenkei (無窮天穏  生酛 純米大吟醸 原酒  天啓), 2019 - served at 46°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 50%.  Nose showed lots of fermentation and oxidation.  Pretty viscous on the palate.  Sweet on the attack but dry in the middle with a long, spicy finish.

Scampi, butterbur scape, apios (赤座海老  蕗の薹  アピオス) - it's been some time since I last had Japanese lobster (藜海老) here, and this was the first time having it grilled.  The ones today came from Chiba Prefecture (千葉県).  The tomalley was very, very tasty, and of course the eggs in vibrant blue were always gonna be stunning.  The potato beans on the side were fine, but the seasonal butterbur buds (蕗の薹) were some of the most bitter I have ever tasted.

Jikon Tokubetsu Junmai Nigori Nama (而今 特別純米  にごり  生), 2020 - served at 11°C. Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 60%.  Tasted of lactic acid like Calpis.  Pretty dry on the palate with medium length.  But this tasted much sweeter when sipping after a bite of the very bitter butterbur scape.

Hangover female snow crab, lily root, rice (酔っ払いセコガニ 百合根 米) - YASSSS!!!! SOOOOOOO HAPPY I got to have this for the second time this season!  As it was last time, the crab - seikogani (せいこ蟹) from Akita Prefecture (秋田県) - came out with the "はい!チーズ!" Or was it flipping us off like a Brit?

The tomalley (蟹味噌), ovaries (内子), eggs (外子), and meat of the Japanese snow crab were all "drunken" and marinated in sake for 4 days.  Mixing it all up with the "risotto" along with pine nuts and lily bulb, and you've got something really, really delicious.  Of course, the marinated sansho (山椒) peppercorns were still buried in the rice.

Kenkonichi Jubnmai Usunigori Nama (乾坤一 純米 うすにごり 生), 2020 - served at 13°C.  Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 60%.  Kinda soft and sweet, but turned spicy with the crab.

Kinmedai, lotus root, nabana (金目鯛  蓮根  菜花) - this was a really, really tasty piece of splendid alfonsino (金目鯛) from Chiba Prefecture, with crispy skin and succulent flesh.  The sauce was made with rapeseed flowers (菜の花).

Underneath the fish we had slices of karashi renkon (辛子蓮根), a specialty of Kumamoto Prefecture (熊本県).  The holes in the lotus root was stuffed with a paste made of shiromiso (白味噌), chili powder, and panko (パン粉) before being breaded and deep-fried.  Pretty interesting. 

Shiragiku Tobubetsu Junmai Genshu Hattannishiki (白菊  特別純米  原酒  八反錦), 2020 - served at 45°C.  Seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 55%.  Soft on the attack and slightly dry.

Udon, duck (饂飩  鴨) - always tasty, with smokiness in the broth and very thin, tender slices of duck.  So comforting near the end of the meal.

Pu'er tea, ice, sake (プーアル茶  アイス  酒) - the Pu'er crème brûlée is always tasty, and of course some sweet sake was poured on top.

2016 Afruge No. 1 - seimaibuai (精米歩合) of 65%.

Very happy to be back here to see Goshima-san, and glad I was able to introduce Mr and Mrs Film Buff to this place.  Now I just need to bring someone who doesn't like sake here...

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