Restaurants & Bars 2

Nagomi, Mayfair, London

limster | Apr 13, 200803:17 PM

A refreshing, clean tasting doufu (bean curd) with natto (fermented soy beans), a nice contrast of delicate doufu with the dense nubs of natto and their sticky gooey outsides, which is nicely echoed by the texture of okra. Soy sauce on the side -- you get to pour as much as you need. Probably my favourite dish of the meal.

Takoyaki (fried octopus in a doughy batter) was ok, the centres appropriately soft, but the exteriors insufficiently crispy. A tonkatsu sauce with wavering flakes of bonito that lend a pleasant oceany flavour to the dish.

Niku jaga was ordinary -- the soft carrots and potato were very comforting, but there was only a small piece of pork that was somewhat firm and tender, but not exceptionally so.

Yakitori comes with slightly tough bits of green onion -- the white parts of the stems that have a leek like flavour. The chicken was undistinguished, but wasn't bad.

The broiled mackerel was basic but nice, with pungent notes from mustard, a more mellow pungency and sweetness from wasabi and an airy sharpness from ginger. Good not great.

For comfort, I turned to onigiri; rice balls wrapped with a bit of nori. I got mine with umeboshi (pickled plum). Solid and hard to mess up. Good glutinous rice -- warm, ever slightly fluffy and sweet.

Solid mochi -- competent skins even if they don't rival the softest ones freshly made from beaten rice flour. Ever so slightly warm filling of adzuki bean paste, perhaps good timing on the microwave.

Not bad, but nothing mind-blowing. I certainly preferred my experience at Donzoko by a serious margin, although I would never write off a place based on one meal.

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