May 30, 2023

Three long years

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After a self-imposed isolation of more than 8 days as a result of me finally catching Covid, I emerged from my cocoon to head to dinner in memory of our beloved Bro Bro.  Over the last few days both Foursheets and I have been looking back at our memories with Kuma, and while it's been 3 years since he left us, tears do still well up at the thought of him.

We returned to Nikoshou once again. We love the simple and tasty food there, and that was exactly what we needed on the night we lost Bro Bro. We eagerly embraced the comfort of familiar dishes, which were a little more fancy tonight compared to three years ago.

Seasonal vegetables tempura (野菜天ぷら盛合せ)

White asparagus tempura (白アスパラ天ぷら) - pretty nice and sweet.

Chicken karaage (チキン唐揚げ) - after my hissy fit last time, RAW Yeah made sure I would have some fried chicken tonight. Unfortunately, this didn't look right at all. It's easy to see that the skin has detached from the meat...

The other issue was that whatever they used to bind the pieces of chicken together - some kind of flour or starch - hadn't been cooked through. It was still mushy.

Firefly squid kakiage (ホタルイカ  桜エビ  かき揚げ) - this was always a good bet, and I was pretty happy with it. Can't say "no" to firefly squid and sakura shrimp.

Awajishima onion and braised beef brisket and tongue (新玉ねぎ ポトフ) - we were pretty happy with this on our last visit, so we decided to order it up again. Somehow, RAW Yeah saved up a little bit of sansho flowers (花山椒) for us. They were actually still a little tingling and numbing.

The butterfly brisket (崩沙腩) was definitely very nice, as was the tongue.

Premium wagyu 6 cut course - the restaurant has changed their wagyu set selection on account of their 7th anniversary, and we took this set to keep it conservative.

Thick cut Australian wagyu tongue (オーストラリア 和牛タン) - always great to start with this. So springy.

Hida A5 uwasuji (A5飛騨牛 ウワスジ) - this was still slightly raw, therefore slightly chewy.

Hida A5 rump (A5飛騨牛 ランプ) - more cooked than the last piece. Good, meaty flavors.

Hida A5 rib fingers (飛騨牛 中落ちカルビ) - a lot thicker than I had expected, and therefore more chewy and springy.

Hida A5 chuck flap (A5飛騨牛 ザブトン) - always thick cut. Very marbled and tasty.

Nikushouyaki sirloin (肉匠焼き サーロイン) - always happy with the signature item.

It's been a while since I last had this, and I had forgotten how thick the slice of sirloin was! Very, very satisfying when taken together with rice, egg yolk, and sauce.

Pickles and kimchi - Foursheets loved the tsukemono (漬物) so much that the restaurant brought her a second, bigger portion...

The musk melon from Japan was sooooo ripe, and sooooo sweet.

I took a simple bottle of red wine tonight, just like I did 3 years ago. This wine was already 10 years old when Kuma came into this world.

2003 Pax Syrah Alder Springs Vineyard The Terraces - showed lots of jammy fruit when decanting. Good acidity on the palate, and first sips showed more plum and some leather. Cassis showed up some 20 minutes later, with a little woodsy notes. This remained the case for the rest of the evening, where the wine showed its maturity without being the fruit bomb that it was in its youth.

We miss you, our asshole. Very much.

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