Friday, August 15, 2008

Shanghai - Tenya

One of the best kept secrets in Shanghai has extended to a few outlets - 6 to be exact. Once known only to a few as the place to eat all the Toro that Shanghai has to offer, is now an institution and they have even ventured beyond Shanghai to neighbouring Suzhou and a little more up north in Beijing. Despite its rapid expansion with the first back in July 2005, they have certainly come a long way. Yet, its prices are still reasonable.
There are 2 set toro courses with the only difference being that the more expensive one comes with toro sushi done 5 ways. Both courses start with 3 cuts of toro - otoro, chutoro and toro-shio. Such buttery creaminess and full of flavour. So well cut that the sinews did not get in the way of an easy chew.

Next up, steamed Taraba crab legs, so fresh that the meat literally slides off the shell.

Then, the hot pot where you can swish slices of the fattiest part of the fish in the adashi stock which is further flavoured by more crab legs, cod fish and a variety of vegetables and tofu. Perfect for a winter's day but in summer, where it is hot and humid now, the airconditioning was thankfully strong enough for it to be enjoyable. The rumbling thunder outside also added to the atmosphere.

The negi-toro rice was very good despite the fact that they do not use premium quality rice but the taste of the combination of chopped up toro, crisp seawood, chives, and with soya sauce over it, was good enough to make you forget the rice, which in the grand scheme of things, was tasty enough.

The usual way to end most Japanese meals is with ice cream and this one did not disappoint. We did not get the usual green-tea and was pleasantly surprised by the aromatic coffee ice cream sprinkled with finely ground coffee powder, adding bite and more aroma. Great finish!

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