Another knock-out from Chef Sono Chikara at Kyo Ya, and ABSOLUTELY maintaining their “SushiGirl Star” rating!
Don’t want to bore you with a million Kyo Ya posts, so please do take a read on our past posts if you want to read more about Kyo Ya. The general gist is that they are great, and never do disappoint! I did try a new dish today, the “Fresh BOTAN EBI & UNI Appetizer” so that’s news-worthy!
Our dinner tonight:
- Complimentary grilled white fish – No idea what this was, but it was yummy!
- Ginormous West Coast Oysters – Sounded like Kusshi and Shigoku? Kushshi makes sense, but isn’t this way too large to be a Shigoku? I must have misheard…
- Sashimi Plate 1 (From top right):
- TOKUBUSHI (Small Abalone) – Served with its own liver sauce, just amazing. I love the way Sono san makes his TOKUBUSHI/AWABI!
- KAMPACHI (Amberjack) – Super light, fresh, crunchy cut of KAMPACHI.
- KINMEDAI (Golden eye snapper) – Impeccable cut of rich, buttery KINMEDAI. Sono-san doesn’t ever ABURI (torched) the skin, which is a shame, but still DELICIOUS.
- SHIMA AJI (Striped Jack) – There’s a very different texture to a good, fresh yet well prepared (aged) piece of SHIMA AJI. And no that’s not an oxymoron, you can be both fresh AND aged, of course you can!
- NAMADAKO (Live octopus) – Perfectly thin slices of NAMADAKO, served with pepper salt (bottom right)
- Salmon Trout from Scotland – Ordered a single serving as I’m not a huge fan of salmons. Boyfriend loved it.
- Hokkaido UNI – Sono san was only offering Hokkaido, Maine, and Santa-Barbara, but he suggested Hokkaido was by far the best tonight, so who are we to argue. Fantastic!
- AKAMI (Lean Blue Fin Tuna) – Light, still buttery AKAMI, with zero funky tinge/aftertaste, and no chew. Very good!
- CHUTORO (Fatty Tuna) – Sono-san wasn’t serving OTORO tonight, only AKAMI and CHUTORO, which is fine by me. Lovely cut of CHUTORO, you see veins in this photo, but it certainly didn’t taste veiny (chewy), it was scrumptious!
- Fresh BOTAN EBI & UNI Appetizer – I cannot believe this is the first time we had this! We were discussing EBIs (shrimps) with Sono-san, talked about the BOTON, AMA, AKA, KURUMA, SHIRO, etc. He suggested that we give this little serving a try, and boy were we glad! Not complaining, as I LOVE Kyo Ya, but Kyo Ya doesn’t have the best veggie options. Sono-san will sprinkle various Japanese veggies and roots throughout his sashimi platters, and they’re all delicious, but if you want just a simple salad, or lightly sautéed veggies, you’re out of luck. This appetizer is the perfect bridge! The medley of flavors are just incredible. He blends a variety of seasonal mushrooms, cucumbers, chives, edible flowers, with BOTON EBI, UNI, IKURA and top it all off in a light ponzu dashi-ish sauce. They will even fry the shrimp heads for you. DELECTABLE!
- KIBINAGO (Baby Herring) – Complimentary! This was on the menu, but I was saving stomach space for the SO MANY other goodies, so I didn’t order. Thank you Sono-san!
- TOKUBUSHI (Small Abalone) – As stated earlier, Sono-san makes the BEST AWABI, so we had to order one more round.
- BOTAN EBI (Spotted sweet shrimp), Santa Barbara UNI, KANI (snow crab), IKURA (Salmon eggs) don – As always, we wrapped up the meal sharing my most favored “don” (rice bowl). In my mind, Kyo-ya has the market cornered in dons. No one comes even close! Served with perfectly seasoned rice, an incredible, mild dashi, and topped with the best goodies, couldn’t be happier!