Friday, March 4, 2011

Nagomi, Monzennakacho (串揚処 和み)

Yet another new place that opened in the last few weeks; the orchids are still fresh. This one is on the street by the river, and where we were sitting would have an awesome view of cherry blossoms in a few weeks. It would be worth reserving, actually.

Opinions vary on the interior; I thought it was completely redone along with the new opening, while someone thought it was average and had probably been re-purposed (can't remember what was in this space last month). Either way, sitting upstairs and having the stadium view of the counter is nice.

What's not nice for the shop is the complete absence of customers. It's a little uncomfortable to be the only people, but more to the point it's sad that a very decent restaurant isn't getting any love on a Friday night.

On those very same Friday nights, it's sometimes hard to disengage from work (This is why I like to go to an izakaya in Monnaka so much - helps with the process and yet is close to home). You can sense the dichotomy in this picture: glass of Toyobijin. Vegetables with yuzu miso. Blackberry.

Toyobijin?! I mean, it's not their Ichibanmatoi or anything, but that's a pretty good brewer to be featuring among your 6 or 8 selections. Remember that whole thing where they're doing 'single vineyard' sakes? I see they're exporting and doing special World Cup and Tokyo Swallows bottlings though, so I hope they don't become the new Dassai.

Pow, Blam, Zowie, fried food. Ah, I didn't mention that earlier, did I? If you didn't see it in the title, this place is almost nothing but fried food. On sticks. You can get a decent feel for the quality from the pictures, I think - good products, good cooking, more oily than I'd like it but not offensively so. And - dead cheap. The bill at kushiage places always seems to add up quickly (I'm thinking of Isomura, which I like but have never blogged), but here you can get an omakase of 10 for the same price a lesser place would charge for their special lunch set. The crab was great, and the quail eggs were notable because the yolks were still a little liquid.

Certainly there are better stick-fry places out there, but the cos-pa here is excellent, the sake is good, and you don't have to fight with other customers for service.

Greetings, earthlings. We come in pieces. We are your fries.

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