Sokyo Omakase – 11 Feb 2016

Okay, because I need to write up about a new omakase experience, I’ve only just realised I’ve never posted my original one, so here we go. The text is pulled from what I’d written shortly after the visit.

Oh hello again Sokyo, I’ve missed you! Last time it was the a la carte, this time it was the omakase. Previously I’ve only had omakase at the Tsukiji fish markets, so I was excited to have one in Sydney!

And here is Sano-san! The omakase is limited to a few spots every night, and tonight, he was serving four people. The angle I had wasn’t great for taking pictures of the cabinet or his work area, but I did get a view of some of the other chefs while they worked!

First up, there was a lot of tasting of the sauce before Sano mixed this up and presented it to us. Toro tartare with caviar. Super lovely delicious flavour!

This was a type of clam, not sure what kind, and was scored and marinated. That little dollop of black was its liver, and was oh so tasty! I love the texture of molluscs, this one was great and crunchy, just the way I like it.

Wagyu shortrib with assorted condiments was next. I can’t remember what each of those little dollops were, but there was probably wasabi, yuzu garlic, radish, sesame seed and other tastiness. That’s probably a rosemary leaf on there too! It was nice, but I like my seafood more.

Seared scallop muscle. They were pretty big pieces, so they must have come from some massive scallops. I love the flavour of scallops!

And now onto the nigiri. I managed to get mostly decent shots of each fish so I get to post them all instead of mashing or missing some. First up, New Zealand snapper. I only like super fresh snapper, most of the times in normal sushi trains it’s not that great. The texture of this one great – slightly firm – and I would happily eat more!

Alfonsino was the next one up, possibly taken from the belly because it was much softer than the snapper.

An0ther clam thing! The first clam thing was tastier. I think there’s a pattern here where I like firm/crunchy rather than soft!

A tuna trio! From top to bottom, yellowfin tuna, bluefin tuna, Japanese toro. All three were quite delicious, and the toro was just as tasty as the first time. However in terms of flavour and texture, the bluefin tuna was my favourite. There was something about it that was just nicer than the rest. The only unfortunate thing is that bluefin is endangered.

Next up, kohada! This one had been marinated in vinegar and was almost too sharp, but towards the end of eating this one, it wasn’t so bad. Would have preferred the vinegar to be toned down just a tad.

Tempura spanner crab. Spanner crab must be in season right now; it’s everywhere! The batter was light and crunchy, this was far better and tastier than the tempura bug tails we had last time from the a la carte.

Back onto the nigiri. Salmon belly with a seaweed type dab on top. I seem to have gotten bored of salmon sushi since there are so many other fish to try, but it tasted good nonetheless – kind of familiar in a way!

Now that’s what I’m talking about. Mackerel that Sano cut (from fillet, not prepping the whole fish) before scoring it on both sides right in front of us. That was cool to watch! Since it’s a fatty white fish, you could definitely taste the fishiness, but I was loving it!

A break from nigiri, and we end up with grilled kingfish, enoki mushrroms, asparagus and daikon. Very simple, but delicous!

This was a gorgeous piece of scampi that had been seasoned, then flamethrowered quite intensely! Yet it came out beautifully, and was so tasty!

Shio kombu squid. Nicely presented, but it turns out I’m still not a fan of squid. I love octopus, but squid still has a slightly too soft and slimy texture for me. 

Rice in a scallop in a seaweed boat! My first reaction when seeing this was calling it a scallop sandwich taco!

Seared kingfish belly.

Seared salmon belly. Nice to end the nigiris on these two classic fish!

Then there was the hand roll with tuna mince in it. It was quite substantial and filled me up. Mine had a burst of wasabi that made me cry, but that was part of the fun! It must have just not been spread out properly.

And the final course, tamago!! Aren’t they so cute! My brother and I received rice with ours, where as the ladies sitting next to us received only the egg. When we asked why, Sano explained it was because we were young, so this would help us grow. I loved that! And this wasn’t any kind of tamago I was used to, instead of being like a “Japanese sweet omelette” this was more like a light, fluffy egg cake. Amazing and mind blowing!

After a satisfying dinner, we were then presented with a tasting plate of their desserts. I love that they still have the strawberry milkshake ice cream mochi! It’s totally my favourite, and it was nice to sample the other dishes as well.

It was a great night and didn’t take too long – it was about a couple of hours all up. Funny thing though, is that had I not been taking 2-3 pictures of each dish, it would have taken about half as much time. It’s amazing how photography increases the dining time by so much – I always knew it would, but it’s so noticeable when consuming sushi because each nigiri represents a single bite.

Luckily the other diners were also taking their time, so we all pretty much kept the same pace (one tiny bit in the middle where my brother and I were a course ahead), which was cool to see as well. Omakase chefs have to be so attentive!

He also has very shiny knives, so much so that I had to take a picture of them! I had never been interested in mirror finish knives because I thought they looked gimmicky, but in action, they were amazing to watch. Every flash of reflected light caught my attention and I couldn’t stop staring.

It was a fun dinner and at the end Sano even gave us his number so that if we ever had questions or needed a booking, we could contact him directly and he would book on our behalf, which was a nice gesture! I was kind of sad we didn’t have any rare ingredients, but winter’s probably a better time for that. It also meant that the dinner came out cheaper than advertised too, which I was thankful for.

I think I’ve been so spoilt by good food in Sydney that now that I’m back in Perth, I can’t eat most ordinary things anymore…

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