Having only a few nights in Tokyo, it was imperative to ensure that each night was planned properly. So for Thursday night, my friend booked Kanmidou (甘味堂), upon a recommendation made to her by her colleague. Located in posh Nishi-Azabu, we walked up a flight of stairs (as per the image above) and was ushered into a lovely dining room almost like someone's house. Warm, soft, lighting, cushions, the works. The photo below shows you the homely atmosphere.
We started off with "gonmido okunokami" sake - which was a sparkling sake with notes of vanilla, honey and pear. Pretty nice. The bottle is seen below:
The first course was a refreshing appetizer of uni and tofu, served chilled. Really delicious start to the dinner: silky tofu and rich uni is a classic combination. (7.5/10)
Next up was the sashimi platter. There was karaigai (flatfish), buri (wild yellowtail), and tuna. All of the fish was good, especially the buri with its flavourful and rich fish oils. (8/10) (Image below)
Next up: Hokkaido oysters - these were particularly delightful, briny, sweet and flavourful. One of the standouts. I've eaten Hokkaido oysters before but none of them came close to this sort of flavour. (8.25/10)
Salad with mushrooms was next - I guess we needed our greens. Served with cheese. (7/10). Competent.
We also had Nene sparkling sake: green apple, zesty, fragrant, hint of almonds. Website at www.gokyo-sake.co.jp.
Next up: chawan mushi, a standout dish and one of the best chawan mushis I have eaten. Extremely fragrant dashi broth, waves and waves of intense seafood flavour, accentuated by pieces of ikura and kani (crab). (8.75/10)
We were up to the gratin next, a traditional izakaya dish. The gratin here was very cheesy, with mushroom and oysters, a soft and creamy texture. (8/10).
The main course finally arrived: beef steak, which had a powerful robust beefy flavour, very flavourful indeed, and with a really long finish. Went well with just a bit of salt, though the accompanying sauce was moreish as well! (8.5/10)
The last course was a chicken hotpot - comfort food for the soul. (8/10)
Would I come back? Sure! But then again there are many izakayas in Tokyo that I have had the pleasure of visiting. This is comparable to Kotaro (ranked one of the top izakayas in Tokyo). Worth checking out.