Hubert Wang

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Sushi Kappo Tamura

Background: I pre-ordered on the same day. Tamura was recommended by the chef of Wataru. They both worked at Shiro’s for multiple years.

Pros:

  • dobin soup is amazing, many shiitake; lightly seared fish in it is flavorful; in harmony
  • fish aging tech is good and consistent. The fish aging is more consistent than Wataru, (but the fish quality and rarity is not as good).
  • like the sake pot design
  • sleek restaurant design, wooden color is friendly

Cons:

  • Rice is far below the bar. After having 5 pieces, I cannot bear with it and told chef the rice is cold and no longer sticky - even hard to stay together. Chef changed rice instantly, the rest of the sushi is much better in rice. (though still, not enough vinegar in the rice.)
  • Dressing is not controlled well. The first piece is too sour with way too much lemon juice; several middle pieces have too much soy sauce - cannot even taste fish umami… specifically, the 2nd and shrimp piece rice are full of soy sauce, looks dark.
  • Ginger is the worst I’ve evert had in Omakase. Please use some good ginger… the current one is way too spicy.
  • Sushi shape is not consistent nor in an ideal state; for example, the 2nd piece doesn’t stand. I believe the chef has tech to do it right - you can tell from the photos that the later half pieces are in a way better shape than the first half - quality improved, after I calling out the rice problem and chef started to take it seriously.
  • Fish rarity doesn’t match with the price, especially for the 12 pieces Omakase charging for $130.
  • Under staffed & need to be flexible in arrangement to show respect to customer: I sat at the spot served by the sous chef. The sous chef also needs to do the table’s a la carte orders. He is way too busy to do Omakase correctly. Omakase needs focus to do it right. Reluctant to say this - I feel a bit uncomfortable, not treated respectful to get a 一期一会 Omakase experience. This emotion was amplified, by the comparison the other 5 Omakase guests served by the executive chef who fully focuses on guests. I think there can be a better arrangement to make guest feel better: executive chef just serve one more guest, i.e. me, and let sous chef to fully focus on serving table orders.

Scores:

  • Overall: 2 out of 5 stars.
  • Flavor: 3 out of 5 stars.
  • Dining experience: 1 out of 5 stars.

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