Going to Asakusa in Mornington Crescent tonight - what to order? soba? How does it compare to Tomoe these days?
I have a reservation for dinner at Asakusa in Mornington Crescent tonight and am wondering whether to go for more izakaya or sushi/sashimi. I have a hankering for the latter but sounds like they do izakaya better. I see limster's report (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/596225) comparing it to Tomoe, but does anyone have anything to add? I love soba, but it'd be odd to me to have it with sushi. If anyone knows a good soba place in London, tell me! There are tons on NYC, like Soba-ya and Cocoron, and I miss them
I lived in Japan for 2 years, used to live in NY and go to Sushi Yasuda, and Tomoe is the only place I currently go to for sushi in London.
Definitely ordering scallop sashimi!
Unfortunately, there aren't any soba specialists that I know about in London. Am a big fan of soba too and wish we had one here.
Haven't had much sushi here either, but at a recent meal at Shimo Gamo (new place in Camden, ex-Soseki chefs), a sashimi plate focused on Cornish mackerel, Cornish sea bream and salmon was excellent, as was an otoro sashimi (they were also offering kama/the collar cut; would probably take up that offer in the winter). Been there a couple of times, will report details when I get the chance. Rice in the nigiri was excellent, elegant flavour, witha glutinous sweetness rising about the very gentle vinegar, the texture of the rice mound slightly springy, the texture of grains soft but not mushy. Could use a touch more balance in rice vs fish, but that's a quibble.
I'm pretty committed to the izakaya-style dishes, for pricing reasons if nothing else. I always have the tsukemono and age-dashi tofu, and I think perhaps there's a miso-aubergine dish I've enjoyed, but my overall hit-rate is pretty good with ordering whatever look interesting. The fried burdock root is not life-changing, but worth having to try IMO.
Thanks for your advice. My friends were in more of a sushi mood, so we got the sushi and sashimi moriawase as well as the kaki-furai (fried oysters) and nasu dengaki (eggplant with miso paste). The oysters were excellent, crunchy with panko and served with a nice okonomiyaki-like brown sauce, and the nasu was good too - a bit better than Bincho Yakitori's version, although I have a Tastecard so would always go to Bincho for that dish and for anything skewered. Bincho's the best place I have found on Tastecard so far, and it's not as good as my favorite NYC place, Yakitori Totto, but still pretty enjoyable. The sushi was acceptable but nothing great - the scallop and tuna were the best, but I enjoy Tomoe's more so would go there instead. The best thing other than the oysters was a dorayaki we ordered for dessert. I'm not sure if they made it there, but the pancake was delicious and it was served warm and didn't taste microwaved. What London really needs is a soba specialist. I hope that happens soon.