April 20, 2023

Japan Michelin tour 2023 day 6: another last-minute foodie call

Pin It

I was walking with Cow to find ourselves a place for a simple dinner when my phone rang.

"Peter, how are you? You are well?"
"Are you dressed, or are you in your underwear?"
"We had a last-minute cancellation... Do you think you can come to dinner in 24 minutes?"

I've received a similar call from the Dining Austrian before, more than 4 years ago. On that occasion I had a little more than 1 hour to get to lunch. This was bordering on the ridiculous. I apologized to my old friend for having to suddenly ditch her, and hopped into a taxi. Yes, OF COURSE I was a few minutes late when I showed up at Tempura Motoyoshi (天ぷら  元吉) and settled into the last seat at the end of the counter. And food came very quickly.

Chicken grunt (伊佐木) - with scallion sprouts (芽葱) and slightly spicy grated radish (おろし).

Prawn legs (車海老のあし)

Japanese tiger prawn (車海老) - the first prawn comes with the signature arch, and is taken with salt. The batter is incredibly light and barely there.

The second Japanese tiger prawn gets more batter and is taken with sauce (つゆ) and grated radish.

Asparagus (アスパラガス) - very, very fresh and sweet. Beautiful product.

Sillago (鱚) - I love sillago tempura. We were asked to take the first bite "as is", while the second nibble should be taken with pickled Chinese onion (辣韮).

Bamboo shoots (筍) - once again we are asked to use salt on the first piece, and dip the second piece in tsuyu. A little surprised that the first piece was a little tough and fibrous.

The second serving of bamboo shoot was seasoned with soy sauce and sansho flowers (花山椒).

Firefly squid (螢烏賊) - absolutely LOVED this. Look at how beautiful this was!

The second firefly squid spent longer time in the oil, which resulted in a crunchier texture along with deeper flavors.

Japanese glass shrimp (白海老) - this was really, really beautiful. The pile of raw glass shrimp came on top of a deep-fried ball of white shrimp paste. The texture of the shrimp ball was really bouncy, and it was just packed so full of prawn flavors.

Shiitake (椎茸) - first with salt, then tsuyu.

Turnip (蕪) - this was so, sooooo sweet. Wow!

Koshiabura (コシアブラ) - first piece with salt, then with tsuyu.

Clam shinjo (蛤の真薯) - the broth was pretty viscous and had tons of clam flavors.

The shinjo (真薯) was deep-fried and came with chunks of clam.

Cherry salmon (桜鱒) - this was wrapped with marinated cherry leaf which was really fragrant. First bite taken "as is", then with salt.

Lotus root (蓮根)

Sea urchin (雲丹 大葉) - another classic that's universally loved, with Japanese green sea urchin (馬糞雲丹) on top of a deep-fried piece of perilla leaf. A few flakes of salt on top of the sea urchin to help bring out the sweetness. Oh, and it was just like ice cream.

Conger eel (穴子) - taken with ginger.

Gunnel (銀宝) - this was, apparently, NOT conger eel but gunnel. That would be the first time I've come across this fish.

Sweet potato (薩摩芋) - so, so delicious and sweet.

Tencha (天茶) - I chose this over tendon (天丼) because it's been so long since I had a proper tencha. One has a choice of sizes here and there are five different sizes in all. The size of the kakiage (かき揚げ) on top is made to fit the size of the bowl chosen, and comes with shrimp and mactra clam adductor muscles (小柱). The tea used is actually hojicha (ほうじ茶) in lieu of the usual matcha (抹茶).

Pickles (香の物) - kinda interesting because they used pickled mustard stem (榨菜).

Milk pudding with mango (牛乳プリン  宮崎マンゴーとソース)

Tea selection towards the end of our meal.

We had a few whites to go along with our dinner:

2016 de Montille Beaune 1er Cru Les Aigrots - got the acidity but the nose wasn't very open at first. Some toast and flint here, and later some lemon citrus as it warmed up and began to open.

2013 de Montille Beaune 1er Cru Les Aigrots - much more open nose and more buttery, with good lemon citrus notes. Good acidity on the palate, and a little grippy. Very nice.

2016 Trimbach Riesling Clos Ste. Hune, en magnum - beautiful nose with tons of petrol, a little sharp, though, as it's still young.

This was a very nice meal, and I'm so glad that after all this time, I finally got a decent tempura meal. Very grateful to my friend for this last-minute foodie call.

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails

TripAdvisor Travel Map