Last night we ate at Morimoto in Napa for Valentine’s Day. It was my first time here but I am a big fan of his from Iron Chef. My partner had been here once before and actually met Morimoto at a food and wine event once.
I thought the space had kind of a cavernous and cold sterile feel. I did not like the layout and design of the place. But I am picky. The valentine’s omakase dinner was $80 per person which was less than we were expecting to pay. Here is what we ate:
An oyster amuse bouche with Asian pear and wasabi pop rocks. Mediocre and gimmicky. If you are going to add something to oysters it should improve their flavor. The pop rocks and oysters combo just did not work at all for me. I started to get concerned about the rest of the dinner.
Mochi with bacon marmalade and hazlenuts. Somewhat difficult to eat but it was really tasty.
Beef severed on a hot stone with bone marrow kimchee. Two small cubes of beef served on a very hot stone. Very good. The kimchee topping was delicious and paired well with the tasty beef.
Grilled prawn in Thai flavored soup. Just ok. The prawn had a strong iodine quality that I never like in prawns. The soup was good but not as good as you would get at a decent Thai restaurant.
Sushi- a small cube of toro tartare in a spicy sauce, sockeye salmon nigiri, hamachi belly nigiri and a roll with prawn tempura. All were excellent. The sockeye was the standout and was the best piece of salmon sushi in my recent memory. The hamachi was also pretty great.
Abalone and veal sweetbread pot pie. Very good. It could have used a bit more abalone but it was very comforting.
Braised pork ribs in miso with king oyster mushrooms and bok choi. I thought this dish was stellar. I have had so many mediocre braised dishes at restaurants the past couple of years that I forgot how good braised meats can be. This dish was so amazing! The meat was falling of the bone and the miso sauce added a delicious umami flavor. The bok choi were also delicious. Perfectly done and the miso sauce paired as well with the bok choi as it did with the pork. An unforgettable dish.
Matcha green tea cake with rhubarb and white chocolate mousse. This was very interesting. Not my favorite dessert of all time but it was good.
I ordered the sake sampler $30. It was ok, I really enjoyed one of the 4 sakes. My partner ordered the Morimoto Daiginjo which was good.
All in all a very good experience.