Monday, November 3, 2014

Sushi Tokami, Ginza, Tokyo (鮨とかみ)

I visited Sushi Tokami (鮨とかみ) on a recommendation from a poster on the Chowhound forum, which is one of the foodie sites that I visit when I need recommendations, especially in relation to overseas places. I had high hopes for Sushi Tokami, because it was my first real sushi full omakase meal in Japan and because the Chowhounders were commenting on how good the chef's tuna is, and I'm certainly a big tuna fan. It was slightly difficult to find this place, located at the basement of Ginza Silver Seiwa building, a building quite near Shimbashi station in Ginza, and which is full of KTV joints. The interior was quite posh, featuring a few private tables and - of course - the sushi counter which could seat about 9 comfortably.

The chef then greeted us and we told him that we came from Singapore. He was - thankfully - very friendly and affable,  and relatively fluent in English as well which was nice, as he could speak to us regarding the food that he was about to serve us.

We were first served with a Tuna Tossaki temaki - the "tossaki" is apparently the backside near the tuna's neck and is high in flavour. When I first popped the temaki in my mouth, my eyes literally "lit" up - this tuna tossaki had such intensity and depth of flavour - such a rich and deep flavour almost like eating well-aged meat. It paired well with the salty akazu vinegar rice (shari) which was a lovely counterpoint to the tuna. I had a second helping at the end of the meal - it was that insane. This was undoubtedly one of the highlights of the meal (9.25/10)

The second dish we had was mushrooms with some asparagus. The mushrooms had a very earthy flavour, very robust, and lifted with some grated yuzu. This was another solid appetizer: 8/10.

The sashimi course was next - we had a buri sashimi which was incredibly delicious, with really tasty fish oils oozing out. Very elegant, clean aftertaste. 

The buri belly (the white piece at the background) was also incredibly good - very yummy fish oils, and certainly more fatty. 
Oishi! (9/10)

Next up was an abalone which had superb flavour - very clean tasting and flavourful. Good texture as well, being nice and firm. (8/10)

Aburi saba marinated in miso. Such an intense mackerel flavour, the torching of the fish brings out all those fish flavours and complements it with a slight smoky edge.  So pure and flavourful. (8.75/10)

Kawahagi liver was next - this was just so creamy (8.5/10)

Next up - a superbly delicious Hokkaido oyster - so creamy and full of that sea taste ending in a long finish. This was marinated with a slight shoyu. Yummy! So creamy! (8.75/10)

Next up - flounder done two ways: one was with salt and pepper - fresh and flavourful; the other was marinated with shoyu and yuzu and that was full of umami. 

This came accompanied by a golden cherry which was sweet, tart and juicy, somewhat like a cherry tomato. Very refreshing indeed. (8.25/10)

That signalled the end of the appetizers - and we then moved on to the sushi proper. 

The first course was a hirame (flounder) - which had good flavour (7.75/10)

Second - ika with yuzu - pretty tender and chewy, which was great. (7.5/10) (not really a fan of ika)

Third, we had a kamasu, or Japanese barracuda. Again, a very pure fish flavour (a "fish oil" taste) - pairing well with the red vinegar shari. Another oishi fish. (8.75/10)

The undoubted star of the show came next - the maguro. As mentioned, they say that Sushi Tokami has the best maguro in Tokyo and I can totally see why! This was undoubtedly, by leaps and bounds, the best maguro I have ever eaten in my life, and certainly one of the highlights of Sushi Tokami. So red in colour, so rich in flavour, with a depth of flavour not seen from any other fish - full of that tuna flavour, like a good dry aged meat. This is how God intended sushi to taste - an almost transcendental experience. 

I thank God for letting me enjoy this maguro. Yums. (9.5/10)

The chutoro was also pretty good - very deep rich tuna flavour, slightly more floral and delicate due to the higher levels of fat. Good long finish - the oils linger on and on. (9/10)

The otoro was brilliant as well - it tasted awesome. Rich flavours of fat, luxurious mouthfeel, so tasty - pairing perfectly with the red vinegar shari. (9.25/10)

Moving on to stronger tasting fish, the kohada had clean fresh flavours, lightly salty, savoury meat. Great. (8.5/10)

This ebi was apparently of top quality - the prawns were freshly steamed and peeled in front of you. Sweet taste. (8.5/10)

Creamy uni was next - floral and delicate. Good stuff and top drawer. (8.5/10)

This was baby snapper marinated in konbu, which had a delicate flavour. (8.5/10)
I am starting to enjoy fresh mackerel (saba) more and more. This was a joy to eat - very fresh, delicate and pure; a complex taste at the back of my tongue, and a long aftertaste. (9/10)

Next up - ikura. This was also very nice, accompanied by some yuzu. (8.25/10)

Anago was delicious. the anago was done two ways: with the usual sauce, and grilled with salt and pepper. Delicious flavours. 8.75/10

We also had some tamago (not pictured) which had a great pudding-like texture. (8.5/10)

Chef Sato-san then asked if we wanted anything else. I asked for more tuna tossaki temaki and was rewarded with another - though sadly it tasted better the first time! I guess we were already satiated. 

Finally, we had tuna tossaki soup to round off the meal. Apparently this is good for the complexion.

Overall, a fantastic, exceptional and transcendent experience. I gave thanks to God for the meal, and I can finally imagine that this is what God intended sushi to taste like. Awesome. One of the most wonderful meals I have eaten in my life and certainly the best Japanese meal so far. Oiiishi!

1 comment:

floberita said...

The food here sounds so good! Would love to try this place the next time I am in Tokyo. May I know how much this meal costs per head?