June 9, 2024

Especially for you

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This month DaRC goes up a big figure, so there has been a series of celebratory dinners. Tonight our little group gets our turn to open up a few bottles with him, and once again he's chosen to support RAW Yeah on this occasion. With the recent announcement regarding Nikushou, it made sense that we tried to lend some support, and RAW Yeah was kind enough to open the restaurant exclusively for us tonight.

The menu was, of course, set by the boss... and as usual we had a mix of seafood and beef, most of which had been meticulously sourced.

Firefly squid with broad bean and white asparagus (螢烏賊 空豆 ホワイトアスパラガス) - didn't think I'd be eating firefly squid this late in the year, but I wasn't gonna complain!

Hokkaido horsehair crab with ponzu jelly and tomato (毛蟹 トマト) - this signature dish remains a crowd pleaser. So tasty and so well balanced, with that acidity whetting one's appetite.

Donchichi Aji (どんちっちあじ) - from Hamada (浜田) in Shimane Prefecture (島根県), with fat in the low double-digit range, served tataki (タタキ) style. So fatty and delicious.

Corn and sakura shrimp kakiage (トウモロコシと桜海老のかき揚げ) - so happy. I love deep-fried corn.

Sashimi selection (お造り) - tonight we had Japanese pink sea urchin (赤雲丹), cockle (鳥貝) from Maizuru (舞鶴) in Kyoto Prefecture, and farmed tuna (マグロ) from Wakayama Prefecture (和歌山県).

Deep-fried horse mackerel cutlet (鯵フライ) - with the same Donchichi Aji from earlier. So fatty and succulent.

Hida tenderloin with white asparagus (飛驒牛ヒレ ホワイトアスパラガス) - the beef was served in a thickened sauce that was done in the recipe of a Matsuzaka beef hotpot.

Rump necktie (ネクタイ) - this part of the rump beneath the surface is rare, which each cattle yielding only 3-400g.

With plenty of sinews, and while the exterior was very nicely charred the center was fairly raw. This was very, very nice.

Tenderloin chain - I have only ever had this cut here, and this was only my second time.

This was really awesome! Really well-marinated so the flavors were wonderful, and when it was cooked properly it was crispy and charred on the outside.

Thick cut Australian wagyu tongue (オーストラリア 和牛タン)

Nikushouyaki sirloin (肉匠焼き サーロイン) - somehow the boss decided that we only needed half of the usual slice tonight...

But it was just as tasty as ever with rice and the egg sauce.

Beef tendon curry rice (牛筋カレーライス) - something I'll always cherish, as this was perfect with the homemade mala (麻辣) sauce.

Finally, there was a pair of cakes from Saint Honore Cake Shop (聖安娜餅屋).

There was definitely enough calories from the food, but with a birthday do like this - especially with this crowd - we get loaded up on calories from the alcohol, too!

Kikuhime Ginjo Kukurihime (菊姫 吟醸 菊理媛), 28BY? - seimaibuai of 50%. The alcohol was kinda sharp on the nose, but this opened up and the alcohol faded. Definitely on the drier side.

Isojiman Junmai Daiginjo Nakatori 35 (磯自慢 純米大吟醸 中取り 35), 2019 - seimaibuai of 35%. Sweet nose of starchy rice. Really smooth on the palate with a nice and sweet attack.

1987 Trimbach Clos Sainte Hune - the first bottle was really fragrant and showed white flowers and lemon on the nose, with good acidity. The condition of the second bottle was even better so the wine was definitely more fresh, with crisp, sharper acidity on the palate. This was just fucking beautiful with huge nose of white flowers and a little flint.

1992 Calera Pinot Noir Selleck Vineyard - there was some acidity which came through the nose, which was showing some complexity, almost like how ketchup would smell with a tiny bit of savory notes. Still got some sweetness on the palate and the fruit.

1975 Beychevelle, en magnum - drank around 2 hours after opening without decanting. The nose was showing beautifully with some capsicum, smoke, mint, leather, and earth. Drinking pretty well now.

1974 Souverain Cabernet Sauvignon Vintage Selection - pretty smoky on the nose, and pretty savory with black olives as the wine developed tertiary flavors. Still very much alive.

1984 Diamond Creek Volcanic Hill - drank some 2½ hours after opening without decanting. Still got the nice fruit, and the nose was meaty and woodsy like cedar. Still going strong, which wasn't a surprise to anyone who's had older Diamond Creek.

Henri Giraud MV17, dégorgée le 22 Septembre 2021 - lovely now with some maturity, giving off savory notes like salty preserved lemon, along with some marmalade. Delicious.

Katsuyama Junmai Daiginjo Shoryu (勝山 純米大吟醸 昇龍) - seimaibuai of 35%. Nice and fragrant with lovely nose of banana and floral notes.

1999 Hugel Gewurztraminer Sélection de Grains Nobles, en demi-bouteille - the nose was really floral, lots of lychees, orange blossom water, and honey. Very rounded on the palate.

1999 Zind Humbrecht Pinot Gris Clos Jebsal Sélection des Grains Nobles, en demi-bouteille - the texture was really viscous. Very sweet on the palate with honey and sapodilla notes. On the nose there was a slight hint of minerals like oxidized Asian pear, medjool dates, and some nutty notes.

A very happy birthday to my friend. I'm just glad Foursheets and I went home after dinner, because the shenanigans continued till the wee hours of the morning, apparently...

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