At last we were discharged from the hospital. We are home since last week and we are coping with Fitzie's illness. She's such a tough girl and in a short week she's on to way of recovering. The road is still long but I believe with my persistent and her toughness, it can only be better.
To celebrate that days in hospitals are over, I went to have a nice Japanese dinner with a dear girlfriend, Linda. She's been raving about Daruma for years. This is how she commented on Daruma: the tempura udon is a must try, the sashimi is best in town, the owner are real Japanese and they are so cute with their politeness and accent. She's right. Daruma is exactly how she described it.
We start the long meal with yakitor. Usually I avoid Yakitori, because I know most Japanese Cheap Eateries buy frozen yakitori and they just heat it up in the oven. But here, no way it's freshly grilled on coal. See the charcoaled blister on the picture. That's what makes a yakitori worth eating. The reason why I ordered this, because on the menu they stated that we are allowed to choose between to flavour; salt or soy sauce. This statement ensures me that they make the yakitori on site. We chose soy sauce as flavoring and it tasted so good that I thought I wanna grab the other yakitori from Linda's hand. The meat are juicy and succulent, sweet and salty from the soy sauce, slightly bitterish from the charcoaled blister. A great way to start a meal.
Then we have an adegashi tofu. Adegashi tofu is always my favourite, I have a thing for deep fried food. This adegashi tofu didn't fails me too. Slightly deep fried with starch then soaked into soy sauce and topped with green onions and grated radish. It's warm and the grated radish soaked up all the greasines from the oil. I even drink up all the soy sauce simple because the combination tasted so good.
Then we had the must order sashimi. From top; Loup de Mer, Salmon flower bud, Hamachi (Yellow fin), Tuna and marinated sardines. See those two cute dollops of wasabi. Linda and me share everything so the cook thoughtfully prepared everything for two person. The fishes were fresh and thickly sliced. I was so happy that I kept chowing down without even really talking anymore.
After this we had the must have tempura udon. What a wonderful udon soup. The udon is chewy and the soup is clear tasting with tasty green onion. We were served with three shrimps tempura and one chrysantemum green underneath those shrimps. This is the frist time I encounter Chrysantemum Tempura. Surpried that that it fits to the picture so well. Brightly green and very pretty with those irregular leaves in its batter. This Udon is so simple but oh so good that we drank up all the soup till the last drop.
The tempura was so good that we decided to order an extra tempura for us to feast on the deep fried food. Three shrimps, one kobocha, on slice of lotus flower, one portobello mushroom. Crunchy but moist in the inside. I always wonder why the Japanese are so good with their deep fried food. Indonesian also deep fried A LOT. But our deep fried food always taste so thick, oily and heavy. Whereas the Japanese counterpart can be so light. Whatever the reason is, I love tempura and life is so much beautiful with perfectly deep fried tempuras.
To end this wonderful meal we ordered green tea ice with red bean paste. Perfect Matcha Ice cream, slightly bitter ice cream but so creamy and soft perfectly combined with sweet red bean paste. I sigh at the end of the meal. Why can Japanese food can be so simple but so deeply satisfying.
The food in Daruma worth every penny. It's not cheap but you have the quality. This is not a cheap Japanese joint where they bought everything frozen and heat it up. But everything is made to order. The restaurant must have been past his glory day (They still have oh so old fashioned but so cute machine to read the credit card) but it doesn't mean the quality of the food deteriorates. I love everything about Daruma and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it right away.