Sushi and sashimi
Nothing particularly novel, but evidence a skilled chef and attention to detail. Of the rolls and nigiri we tried, we were particularly fond of the firm, buttery kampachi and a tuna so fatty it all but dissolved on the tongue.
Uni tempura ($9.75)
It sounds like a dish that could go wrong in a thousand ways—but the tempura batter touched only the shell of nori, fusing to form a crunchy cradle for the uni—a mouthful of buttery, deeply funky urchin, tasting intensely of the sea.
Lychee tempura ($5)
It sounded like the perfect starter during lychee season, but we couldn't quite reconcile the sweet, slippery fruit with the dollop of spicy salmon hidden inside each tempura shell.
Its innards liquify and disappear into the salty, sweet, sticky miso.
Sliced beef rolled around scallions, bathed in an intensely savory teriyaki sauce, neither too sweet nor too syrupy.
Brought to your table. This guy's ready to go.
Here's the beef
Sliced super-thin, against the grain, it falls apart in your mouth once cooked.
How to shabu
Grab a slice of beef with your chopsticks and swish through the broth.
After and before
If you like your beef slightly pink, it's ready in under five seconds; leave it longer if you prefer it cooked through, although it'll get a bit tougher.
On the side
Veggies, tofu, and thick, chewy udon noodles; toss 'em all into the broth.
Let the vegetables cook as you dip and swirl; they'll pick up the flavor the beef leaves behind.
Lychee tempura, Take 2
We preferred the tempura lychee fried with red bean paste, served here as a dessert.