Wednesday, March 4, 2015

YummY! - Japanese Set Dinner @ Nara Higashimuki

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               Jotaro's Food Review               
Wahokuya Happoh Restuarant, Higahimuki, Nara, Japan - October 2014.
On the second day of our holiday in Japan, after an interesting visti to the Nara Deer Park, we popped into the nearby Higashimuki area to have a nice Japanese dinner.

Were there many eateries along the Higashimuki area and finally settled for a place called Wahokuya Happoh Restaurant along Sanjo Dori. The shop like most Japanese ones, was quaintly decorated.

Inside, it was small but cosy with an open general seating area further inside.

At the entrance, opposite the reception counter, were a row of private rooms.

These private rooms were really small, most of which seats two with a larger one seating four. Small but yet cosy enough for a romantic dinner for two ... me & my wifey!

Ok .... the love-birds are comfy, let's see what we had:
First off was a Shashimi set served in a long sword-shaped "plate".

It was not a big serving and was more like an appetiser. It came with a few slices of chunky fresh tuna, two slices came from the body and two slices from the belly. I sort of liked the belly cut, with just some slight fat to give it a little extra creaminess.

Red tuna meat and white Butter Fish.

The salmon were thin slices, rolled up. I like my salmon in thick cuts. The thinner slices here just gave a hint of salmon sweetness, this is after all just a teaser.

The next dish was also an appetizer, something light to balance off the Shashimi. It was very soft tofu served in a small woven rattan basket and came together with a little yellow mustard and fine cuts of spring onions. This was very soft and smooth, something akin to the Chinese Tofu-fah .

We carefully scooped some onto our plates added a bit of the spring onions and a touch of the mustard - I am just second-guessing that this is how it should be eaten, this is a new experience for me too.
The fresh spring onions gave a contrasting bite to the soft tofu, and the fiery mustard was the total opposite of the tofu's bland taste This is a dish of contrasts; one of opposites in texture and flavour!

The mains was lightly grilled slices of Wagyu beef. It was grilled so lightly that the centres were still raw and Wasabe were served together with it hinting of "Shashimi".
The dish came is a long leaf-like plate and was served with slices of vegetables. To one side was a small little cute pink pot containing sweet sauce. It's a nice and attractive presentation.

A close up view of the dish. Yes the centres were rare almost being raw. With nicely medium burnt sides it was another dish of contrasts. The meat was fresh and tasty but  somehow it did not match the ones we had a day earlier at Osaka's Kuromon (... See blog).

I believe all the above dishes are suppose to be eaten without rice; but the quantities were to small and we ordered some rice to fill up our tummies. The bill came to about 2,500 Yens, not that expensive but the quantity could have been more for. that price. Well, that's Japanese dining for you.

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