Omakase at Cafe Japan, Golders Green London 16/20

FISH is tricky. We take it for granted, in Europe that is, that there is a difference between a grilled lamb chop and a roast leg of lamb. Less so with fish. To get an understanding certain things are necessary, firstly high quality fish which is to say extremely fresh, and secondly a chef with knowledge of the subtle differences between say the belly and the back of the tuna, or even between different parts of white fish and to have the knowledge as to how to season them – this one with soy, this one with lemon, this one garnished with marinated hijiki, this one with ponzu. At this level raw fish becomes an art form…

The omakase – chef’s choice – from Seraya Fujushima at Cafe Japan is such an education. I have reviewed this modest, humble, sheer brick, slick café, rather than restaurant, before here (Wazen, sadly did not survive the hellish corner at Kings Cross, RIP) but the fact that it also provides set lunches for less or around £10 overlooks the fact that the six counter seats by the sushi bar are able to produce the highest quality sushi.

The photographs may look similar but in terms of taste and texture each of the 20 or so courses/mouthfuls is exemplary. All come on room temperature rice barring towards the end a whole scallop, a few have been blow torched to change the temperature until you reach this grand finale of the salmon roe wrapped in a sheet of nori and then finally the sea urchin.

I am full of admiration.

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