Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Urasawa, Beverly Hills

Last Saturday, my family and I made our much-anticipated maiden voyage to Urasawa. My sister was generous enough to take us all there to celebrate our birthdays, anniversary and other milestones, and we had a wonderful time. I can’t really put into words the kind of service and food we experienced; it was all delicate, profound and will be put into the “once in a lifetime” category.

I’ll try my best to remember everything we ate; some of the sushi is lost on me now that a few days have passed but here is my photo essay of our wonderful Urasawa meal! Enjoy:

Beautfiul display behind counter

First course- hairy crab salad with crysthansamum petals

Lightly seared toro with ponzu
and edible gold leaf

Assortment of lightly stewed vegetables & seafood

Assorted sashimi on ice block...check out that toro...wow!

Baked dish made of yamaimo (mountain potato) with various treasures hidden inside..like uni, ginko nuts, shrimp. Most surprising dish of the night- had the exact texture of rice but was made of this very healthy potato.

See the uni inside?

Tempura of cod sperm sack served with dashi dipping sauce

Chef Hiro Urasawa starts to work on a huge slab of Kobe beef.....

...perfectly marbled with fat

Toro seared on a hot stone

The leftover meat from the hairy crab used in the first course, cooked in it's own shell with a nice slice of uni. This was sublime...

Beef slowly braised in sweet soy....this was one of my favorites. So tender....!

The raw ingredients for shabu shabu, including a large slice of foie gras.

See huge slab of foie gras....

Cooked for about a minute in the hot broth, the foie gras was rich, tender yet extremely refreshing. My father and J, neither of whom are big foie fans, loved this dish.

Sushi course:



Kohada- much less "pickeled" than versions I've had before, you could really taste the fish instead of the vinegar.

Lighly grilled shiitake mushroom. This was absolutely meaty and delicious.

Sayori (half beak)

Aji- Spanish mackeral

Awabi (abalone)- I've never been a fan of abalone but this was very good.

Uni (sea urchin). The best I've ever had, hands down. No bitterness, just sweet and creamy. Wow.

Maguro (tuna)

Ama ebi (sweet shrimp)- we watched Urasawa-san cut open big, fat Santa Barbara spot prawns to create this. Again, the best I've ever had.

Giant clam- slightly crunchy and sweet

The housemade "gari" or pickled ginger was sweet and spicy with a softer texture than most.

Real, fresh wasabi root

Unfortunately, this one escapes me!

Saba- mackeral

This one is lost on me now as well...

Unagi, sweet and tender

Astuyaki tamago- his version was almost cake-like..I could have eaten a few more of these!!


Box containing assorted fruit- the stewed apple was my favorite

Sesame pudding topped with a sweet bean paste and matcha (green tea)

The sesame pudding was super smooth, slightly nutty and just sweet enough.

Toasted rice tea finishes out the amazing meal

The thing that surprised me the most, I have to admit, was the cheerful disposition of the chef, Hiro Urasawa. I guess I assumed that he would be a very serious and disciplined type, and although he certainly is when it comes to his food, he was good natured and joked a lot. He made everyone feel so comfortable and made sure to call each person by name.

Everything about the experience was perfect, and I highly recommend one visit if you ever get the chance. It is, as most people know, very expensive, so it certainly isn't a place to go often but everyone should experience this at least once in their lives. The food, service and watching Urasawa-san at work is absolutely worth every penny.


218 Rodeo Drive Los Angeles CA 90210


KirkK said...

Hey TAG - Urasawa was possibly my most memorable eating experience, and not only because of the food - Hiro-san is so amaiable - he even went through his list of favorite restaurants on our visit. It looks like that second photo is of Aoyagi - Red Clam. Fantastic post!

foodette said...

Wow, great pictures! It looks like an amazing eating experience, though I must admit I don't think that I could have handled eating a sperm sack. Pretty cook that they serve that though! If you get a chance I would love to read what that tasted like.

Anonymous said...

wow so jealous!!!! finally reading a picture blog of urasawa.... im excited even just reading it =) great entry. This will be one of my must have one day.

Anne said...

Hi Kirkk! I, too, really enjoyed Hiro-san. He was so nice and the food, well, it was amazing.

foodette: The sperm sack was sweet and creamy- I know that sounds strange but it was really delicious.

Shihfan, Thanks for reading and I hope you make it to Urasawa one day too!


Thanks for taking the time to shoot pics of your whole meal at this restaurant many of us foodies have yet to be able to try! I agree with foodette about the sperm sack ... did you enjoy it?

Food, she thought. said...

oh my gorsh! i keep meaning to eat there, and every time we have an uber special occasion we end up somewhere else. must.go.not.

Anonymous said...

hi anne! your urasawa dinner looks awesome. i'm planning to go sometime pretty soon. i've read so many reviews but it never tires to read another one because the food seems so beautiful and exciting. great post!

fumipuriri said...

i didn't even know such a place existed! its like sushi in japan! i have GOT to try it sometime!

Anonymous said...

This post perfectly captures the magic of Urasawa - certainly one of the very top sushi experiences in the US.

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