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Early Summer 2013 Omakase at Shunji: An YASPE (Yet Another Shunji Pictorial Essay) Production

PeterCC Jun 8, 2013 04:18 PM

[For pictures with in-line captions, and the ability to view large-size photos, please visit http://theoffalo.com/2013/06/early-summer-omakase-at-shunji/.]

Last night, I went back to Shunji after just a one week break. This is NOT something that I can afford to do all the time (or even some of the time), but the timing worked out for me to go two weeks in a row, and I couldn't pass up the opportunity. And chrishei, being my "sidekick" (his word, not mine), accompanied me.

Since I just did a detailed review of my omakase from last week (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/904360), I'm going to crib J.L.'s style and let the photos speak for themselves (but I'll answer any questions about the dishes in comments below).


1. Specials Board
2. Mozuku
3. Tai Somen
4. Chawanmushi w/Summer Truffle & Uni
5. Aoyagi & Ebi Nutaae
6. Shunji Dispatching an Ise-Ebi (Japanese Spiny Lobster)
7. Live Ise-Ebi Head
8. Arugula Salad w/Lobster & Bleu Cheese
9. Live Ise-Ebi Sashimi
10. Kanpachi Sashimi w/Su-Miso & Ponzu Gelee
11. Kawagishi Toro & Bafun Uni
12. Ishidai, Madai, Higesori Dai
13. Sauteed Shiitake & Nagareko
14. Fried Okoze (Sculpin)
15. Suzuki Yaki
16. Shunji Preparing Live Hirame Sashimi (For Other Guests)
17. Okoze
18. Live Hirame (From Above)
19. Katsuo
20. Chibiki
21. Kamasu
22. Kohada
23. Marinated salmon
24. Chutoro
25. Maguro Zuke
26. Miso w/Ise-Ebi Head
27. Wagyu
28. Unagi
29. Tamago
30. Uni & Kanpyo Maki
31. Red Miso w/Clams
32. Mentaiko
33. House-Made Lime Ice Cream

(Sorry, no embedded captions this time. Too lazy/tired.)

  1. ipsedixit Jun 8, 2013 06:30 PM

    How was the ice cream?

    7 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit
      J.L. Jun 8, 2013 06:38 PM

      I ask for this on every single visit now. It is a marvel, and I don't even like lime that much.

      1. re: J.L.
        ipsedixit Jun 8, 2013 06:47 PM

        That was my understanding. Thanks.

      2. re: ipsedixit
        PeterCC Jun 8, 2013 07:14 PM

        J.L. pretty much covered it. I even brought one home for my wife. They don't have to-go containers, so I took it home in the ramekin, which I now have to return. At least I'll have an excuse to go back. ;-)

        1. re: PeterCC
          ipsedixit Jun 8, 2013 07:24 PM

          A sign of true luv.

          1. re: PeterCC
            ns1 Jun 8, 2013 07:43 PM

            You're in good with the chef when...

            1. re: PeterCC
              J.L. Jun 8, 2013 08:32 PM

              I'm bad. I still have like 3 of his porcelain bowls at my house I have yet to return... :-P (But we likes the Shunji takeout so much too!)

              1. re: J.L.
                PeterCC Jun 8, 2013 10:56 PM

                Impressive. How often do you do Shunji takeout? Has it supplanted SUGARFISH?

          2. PeterCC Jun 10, 2013 02:04 PM

            I just realized I hadn't posted the damage, so I'll "kevin" myself... This was ~$200 just for the food, pre-tax. Maybe a little more. The live Chilean ise-ebi probably wasn't cheap (understatement) but was at least split between chrishei and I.

            You're letting me down, kevin. ;-) Hey, where is kevin anyway?

            22 Replies
            1. re: PeterCC
              kevin Jun 10, 2013 05:43 PM

              Sorry, Pete. Sometimes I can't be on the site at all times. Gotta be on the job site once in a while.

              1. re: PeterCC
                kevin Jun 10, 2013 05:46 PM

                My apologies.

                There have been so many different threads on Shunji's the past few days that I just couldn't keep up.


                Now I really want to go too.

                But yeah, I don't care for lemon-lime desserts. So the chocolate mousse will have to do the trick as always.

                1. re: PeterCC
                  kevin Jun 10, 2013 05:47 PM

                  Damn. 200 per person ? you are even one-upping Mr. JL.

                  1. re: kevin
                    chrishei Jun 10, 2013 09:18 PM

                    We come at the king, we best not miss...

                    1. re: kevin
                      chowseeker1999 Jun 11, 2013 01:12 PM

                      Yikes. @ $200 per person before tax and tip, isn't that inbetween Urasawa and more expensive than Mori (which was pretty excellent)? Is it worth it?

                      1. re: chowseeker1999
                        PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 01:20 PM

                        I think people need to gauge that for themselves. That is not typically what I spend there, but chrishei and I went a little crazy, I guess. Plus it depends on the ingredients, the whole fried okoze, and (especially) the live Chilean Japanese spiny lobster were premiums.

                        1. re: PeterCC
                          kevin Jun 11, 2013 01:41 PM

                          How much was the live Chilean Japanese spiny lobsters ?

                          Or how much was the premium on those suckers ?


                          1. re: kevin
                            PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 01:49 PM

                            I don't know, it was part of the omakase and didn't ask the a la carte pricing. Sorry. I'm guesstimating that it's probably at least $50-$60.

                            How much was your lobster three-way (or was it four-way), if you recall?

                            1. re: PeterCC
                              kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:02 PM

                              It was 75 to 100 upcharge. When I asked. Not cheap.

                              1. re: kevin
                                PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 02:15 PM

                                I wouldn't be surprised if the live spiny lobster was in that range too...

                                1. re: PeterCC
                                  kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:16 PM

                                  Do you happen to have a quick link to the picture of the Chinese spiny lobsters ?

                                  1. re: kevin
                                    PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 02:24 PM

                                    The Japanese spiny lobsters from Chile is posted on the Shunji Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb.... Not sure about Chinese spiny lobsters unless they were mentioned in one of those Sea Harbour or Elite threads...

                                    1. re: PeterCC
                                      kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:30 PM

                                      My bad.

                                      Why did I say Chinese instead of Chile ?

                                      1. re: PeterCC
                                        kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:31 PM

                                        Excessive, uncontrollable brain farts.

                                        1. re: kevin
                                          PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 02:37 PM

                                          TMI! :-)

                                        2. re: PeterCC
                                          kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:31 PM

                                          Hmm, each one looks tiny. Are you supposed to eat a few of these suckers per person ???? It looks like an oversized langoustino.

                                          1. re: kevin
                                            PeterCC Jun 11, 2013 02:37 PM

                                            They're not huge, but they're not that small: http://www.chow.com/photos/951125.

                                            1. re: PeterCC
                                              kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:39 PM

                                              The man himself deep contemplation of his craft.

                                              Beautiful picture.

                                              I also forgot to mention that Shunji is one cool dude too.

                            2. re: chowseeker1999
                              ns1 Jun 11, 2013 01:48 PM

                              "isn't that inbetween Urasawa and more expensive than Mori (which was pretty excellent)? "

                              Mori and Shunji seem to be pretty similar price wise - just depends on how much of the rare stuff you eat/drink.

                              1. re: ns1
                                kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:03 PM

                                Well, at Mori, I doubt you wish usally have a dish that by itself would garner a 50 to 90 charge.

                                1. re: kevin
                                  ns1 Jun 11, 2013 02:16 PM

                                  I highly suspect a live spiny lobster @ mori would run the same, no?

                                  1. re: ns1
                                    kevin Jun 11, 2013 02:18 PM

                                    Oh, yes, I would guess so.

                                    I think what I meant was that I don't think Mori would serve a whole slew of dishes (beyond the tofu and a couple other cooked dishes) beyond their sushi/sashimi.

                                    Maybe I'm wrong on that note.

                                    Usually, read: always, I stick to just the sushi at Mori and one time I sprung for the homemade tofu appetizer as well as the whipped tofu dessert with black sugar sauce.

                        2. k
                          kevin Jun 14, 2013 11:31 AM

                          Yeah, I loved the Ise Ebe lobster three ways, tartare (my have) followed by the tempura and sashimi.

                          And the chuwan mushi with summer truffles and uni is beyond great.

                          so was the other half dozen pieces of sushi, though these were made by one of his chefs not shunji personally, and obviously when shunji makes it its that much better.

                          the bleu cheese and purple potato ball.

                          and a chocolate mousse.

                          oh, and the lobster head in miso soup at the end, fourth way.

                          not cheap even though i probably didn't even have half the number of dishes you you had so it would make sense that your meals would even be 225 to 240 for the dishes you had.

                          how many individual pieces of sushi did you have from your original post here, more than 20 ?

                          anyhow, as always, a great meal, if still very expensive.

                          17 Replies
                          1. re: kevin
                            PeterCC Jun 14, 2013 11:44 AM

                            Glad you had a great (if expensive) meal! Did you eat solo? Re: Cost--Remember that chrishei and I split the ise ebi and the fried whole okoze, so the cost of those dishes were split as well.

                            I count 14 pieces of sushi for this last meal there--16, if you count the individual uni/kanpyo maki pieces--I only had one of the unagi pieces pictured.

                            1. re: PeterCC
                              kevin Jun 14, 2013 12:04 PM

                              Yeah, I downed the Ise Ebi on my own, and I would not have wanted to part with any of it. :)

                              I think I had 6 or maybe 7 pieces topps, but i may have lost track.

                              And that custard with the summer truffles: excellent.

                              1. re: kevin
                                ns1 Jun 14, 2013 12:13 PM

                                What was your damage for 1 person?

                                1. re: ns1
                                  kevin Jun 14, 2013 12:37 PM

                                  A C-note, before tax and tip.

                                  1. re: kevin
                                    PeterCC Jun 14, 2013 12:45 PM

                                    That's a good price. Did you get the tasting menu, or a limited omakase, or a la carte? Wondering how much the ise ebi was on its own if it was itemized on your bill.

                                    1. re: PeterCC
                                      kevin Jun 14, 2013 01:18 PM

                                      I guess it worked out to a limited omakase (?) because I didn't specificy anything except that i had to have that baby tiny spiny lobster.

                                      Though also the ise ebi may have been smaller to suit one person.

                                      But then again, I am a glutton.

                                    2. re: kevin
                                      ns1 Jun 14, 2013 01:09 PM

                                      that's not bad at all.

                                      1. re: kevin
                                        kevin Jun 14, 2013 01:18 PM

                                        next time, i really want to try that truffle gohan too.

                                        1. re: kevin
                                          PeterCC Jun 14, 2013 01:26 PM

                                          Me too, but he said it's too big for one person and rather large even for two. Plus, with the amount of truffles, I think that would severely increase your bill, unless that's all you had, which would probably be a fantastic meal of just one course!

                                          1. re: PeterCC
                                            Porthos Jun 14, 2013 01:34 PM

                                            That's what he *said* but it would not have been difficult finishing the entire thing. So good...

                                            1. re: Porthos
                                              PeterCC Jun 14, 2013 01:46 PM

                                              I think he underestimates us Chowhounds' eating capacities...

                                              1. re: PeterCC
                                                kevin Jun 14, 2013 01:50 PM

                                                Eating capacity, yes. But I probably would not want to drop a couple of C-notes on that dish alone.

                                              2. re: Porthos
                                                kevin Jun 14, 2013 01:50 PM

                                                Besides rice and liberal shavings of truffles, what else is in there ?

                                                1. re: kevin
                                                  PeterCC Jun 14, 2013 01:57 PM

                                                  There are the side items like the egg yolk and the ikura. Porthos and J.L., being the two who've actually had it, will have to give more details.

                                                  1. re: PeterCC
                                                    kevin Jun 14, 2013 02:03 PM

                                                    If I'm not mistaken, I did see him serving it to about a party of four a few months back, and it was a huge pot that he was stirring it in, if I'm not mistaken.

                                                    But it sure looked great.

                                                    And it was not mentioned on the chalkboard menu either.

                                                    Oh, boy. I am going to have to try it soon.

                                                    Please report back if you try it before me.

                                                    And thanks for the tip on the chawan mushi and the baby spiny lobsters.

                                  2. re: kevin
                                    Ciao Bob Jun 14, 2013 01:43 PM

                                    Do you put it on your house account?

                                    1. re: Ciao Bob
                                      kevin Jun 14, 2013 01:51 PM

                                      I sure wish.

                                      But I am only a mere mortal.

                                      Unlike some on this board. :)

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