Tuesday, July 23, 2013

ginza japanese restaurant.

We came to Ginza for the second round of birthday feasting, this time with the rest of the family.  I've previously come here for their buffet barbecue which is not too bad, but their fine dining options looked quite tasty as well.

For starters we ordered the deluxe platter of sushi and sashimi and the beef kushi-yako - grilled beef skewers.
Ginza Deluxe Platter: $63
The platter went beyond what I had imagined.  There were so many different items to choose from and I don't think I managed to try a bit of everything.  My favourites were the scallop sashimi - so so sweet and soft - and the tuna sashimi.  The raw oysters also receive a special mention.  Topped with some kind of vinegary sauce and other condiments, it was a pity they only gave us two.

Beef Kushi-Yako: $12 for 2
These were a bit of a let down.  Although the flavour was there the beef was kind of tough and chewy.  They were an average size for skewers, although if I'm paying $6 for one skewer I would expect it to be more than spring onions and beef.

Vegetarian Tempura: $19
As an avid fan of tempura, this one didn't really make the cut.  Although it was presented prettily and there was quite an assortment of vegetables on there - eggplant, corn, asparagus, sweet potato, capsicum, seaweed and lettuce - the batter let it down.  It wasn't as light and crispy as it should have been so it kind of weighed down on the vegetables.  

Ishiyaki Eel Bibimbap: $25
Unfortunately I didn't get to try any of the eel, but comments were that it was very good.  There was also a lot of rice given, which was good since we didn't order any other rice, and it had soaked up all the delicious sauce.  After we finished most of the rice, we deliberately left some rice in there for it to burn since the stone bowl was still super hot.  It's a Chinese thing, I think, where you eat the burnt parts of the rice.  The rice becomes crunchy and has a smoky flavour to it.  Don't let it go completely charcoal though, that won't taste very nice.

Ginger Pork: $19
This was one of my favourite dishes of the night.  The pork was so soft and almost melted in my mouth.  The sauce wasn't too gingery either.  Sometimes the ginger can overpower the flavour of the meat which makes it hard to eat, but this was good.

Wagyu Beef Sukiyaki
Mushrooms, cabbage, tofu, carrots, spinach, udon noodles
If you ever go to Ginza, this is the dish to order.  Although it's basically cooking your own food and there's a minimum of 2 people per serve, it is so worth it.  And.  The.  Beef.  It is amazing.  I have no words to describe how delicious the beef was, but it was so delicious.  I would recommend cooking the beef first, then the vegetables and then the udon noodles.  This allows the noodles to soak in all the rich juices from the beef and the sweetness of the vegetables.

All in all we really enjoyed the food at Ginza.  There were six of us and we were all extremely full after everything was gone.  Unfortunately the restaurant itself wasn't as spectacular.  The service was adequate - quite slow in the beginning but quickened towards the end of the meal.  However, the smoke from the buffet barbecue had escaped from the backroom and filled up the entire fine dining area.  What was worse was that we were sitting towards the back of the restaurant so the air surrounding us was even more smoky. By the time we left the restaurant the smoke had stuck to our clothes and hair, which wasn't really a pleasant reminder.

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