Thursday, May 7, 2009

Warning: Text heavy post - no camera :(

So after Jamie's random clues about the birthday dinner location, I concluded we were either going to Sushi Ko in Georgetown or Makoto in the Palisades. I have wanted to check out Makoto for the LONGEST time (we're fans of Kotobuki, the cheaper, less fancy sushi place upstairs). Imagine how excited I was when I got home and found out we were going to Makoto! Woohoo! :)

I didn't bring my camera along and while I regret not being able to post all the gorgeous plates of food we got, it was such a small and proper setting - I felt weird busting out the camera. I'll try my best to describe the amazing dishes!

Jamie and I both decided on the Omakase Menu - a 10 course meal that changes daily depending on the chef's mood. The meal always has the same elements/cooking methods, but the ingredients change daily - maybe even during the course of the evening! I swear the table next to us got a different 3rd course selection.

First course was a conch soup with shiitake mushrooms and bamboo shoots. Presentation was awesome - the briny, brothy soup was served in a conch shell set atop a mound of salt with a blue goo that was on fire to keep the broth hot (not to mention a schnazzy visual effect). This was only my second dance with conch (first being a curried conch in Grenada) and I must say, I wasn't that thrilled with the texture. It was a lot chewier than I like it. However, the broth was deliciously briny. mmmm.

Second course was a trio of dishes - a cooked and cooled thinly sliced rare beef, mussels in a vinaigrette, and sliced avocado with a tart mayo sauce. There were SO many fun flavors going on in this course. The beef was drizzled with a (I think) ponzu sauce - something slightly tangy. The avocado (I LOVE avocado, but sometimes I think it can be too rich tasting) was perfectly paired with the tart mayo. When we were told it was a mayo sauce, I got a little worried, but the tartness balanced everything out. My favorite part of this course were the mussels in vinaigrette. It was like a mini mussel salad :)

Third Course might be one of my new comfort foods - fried softshell crab coated with rice crackers and served with green tea salt and japanese red pepper. Fried to perfection! Squeezed a little lemon on top, dipped it in the green tea salt...heaven. :)

Fourth Course was the BEST SASHIMI! I got the 'regular' sashimi which consisted of tuna, jack (investigating this one - will report back), and spanish mackerel. Jamie got a special sashimi - fatty tuna. OH MY GOD. This was the prettiest piece of ruby red tuna I have ever seen in my entire life. It practically melted in my mouth. Jamie's toro - INSANE. Spanish mackerel was the best I've ever had - it was only slightly marinated (I've had some pretty potent ones before) and also melted in my mouth. Beautiful fish! Also, this was the first time I've had freshly grated wasabi (only tried it on one piece of tuna) and omg. SO much better than the paste.

Fifth Course - I'm still trying to figure out. It seemed to be a braised and chilled yellowtail. It was slightly salty and sweet and fell apart as you touched your chopsticks to it. I totally forgot what the woman said it was so once I find out, you'll be the first to know!

Sixth Course was another trio of dishes - a japanese mountain vegetable (kinda looked like pickled long beans - really crunchy), scallop, oranges and shrimp over a vegetable puree, and a squash in citrus juice. I didn't really have any strong feelings about this course. The mountain vegetable was good and surprisingly a little spicy. The squash tasted strangely like a

Seventh Course was a plate of the cutest pieces of sushi ever. One piece each of tuna, yellowtail and scallop. Surprisingly, I prefered the sashimi over the sushi.

Eighth Course was a grilled dish. Jamie got grilled salmon and I got the black cod, both came with a mini grated daikon salad (and by mini I mean the size of a typical wasabi mound). Both were cooked to perfection. I liked mine for the flavor (again, slightly sweet and salty, plus it had that charred grill taste) and Jamie's for the texture - his salmon was pefectly soft and the skin crisp. Fantastic contrast!

Phew, I was getting pretty full at this point.

Ninth Course, I could do without. I got soba noodles in broth with wild vegetables and Jamie's came with seaweed. Nothing too exciting, in fact, I think I only like cold soba noodles. Something about them in a warm broth just doesn't do it for me.

Final Course was a plum "sorbet", which was really more like a granita, but a perfect end to the meal. Anything heavier and I would have fallen over.

Best birthday dinner ever :)

Now that I've left you with a novel, it's time for bed. Bootcamp, 10 mi run and work for a couple hours before heading off to Leesburg for a rehearsal dinner!


Christina Penn said...

What a great sounding meal! You make me long for sushi. Can you imagine going TWO YEARS without? It's tough, especially after reading about that sashimi!

Jamie said...

last night's meal was the best prepared fish that i have ever eaten...that says a lot. it is probably up there in terms of quality too. especially the salmon and toro.