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A quick bite at Unacho

 

They’ve been around since October last year, but I’ve only tried the unagi specialty restaurant recently.

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I wasn’t planning to try out the place while I was at Plaza Senayan, so I didn’t bring my DSLR along. Pardon the phone cam quality pictures :( All I can say now is if you love your eels, there’s no reason to wait any longer, because as of right now, Unacho is the first and only Japanese dining experience in Indonesia that specializes in serving you freshly grilled unagi.

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There’s this particular dish served at Unacho that you must not miss: The Unagi Hitsumabushi. It’s a Nagoya specialty where you get slowly and tenderly grilled eel over binchotan charcoal, then dipped with a homemade tare sauce (teriyaki sauce). Then the luscious eel would be served on warm rice, along with a side of ochazuke. Normally I have my chazuke with some cooked salmon or tuna, but this is completely new, and it totally made me list Nagoya as a culinary destination.

Though about 70% of the menu are practically variants of the char-grilled eel, Chef Kanahama Shinichi of Unacho also serves several traditional Japanese dishes. You have classic favorites such as gindara saikyou, beef tataki, tori nanban age, and omakase-style dining as well (See Tatemukai). Just as it’s not all about toro with Tate-san, it’s a beautiful array of authentic Japanese delicacies at Unacho.

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For our sides, we had the Salmon Mille-Feuille.

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I mean, how can you go wrong with fresh avocados and raw sake? These are uber fresh and tousled with some super acidic apples. To top off all that velveteen, the yolk and tangy onions blended everything beautifully together. Anyone who appreciates zen art would love the simplicity of this dish.

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My babe got the Tamago Unajyu set.

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Let me just say … this is one of the fluffiest, most perfectly-seasoned scrambled eggs ever. To top all that feather-like texture, you have your thick, delicious unagi and perfectly vinegared rice. May I also add that this comes in a generous serving, considering you can easily share this set of miso soup and unajyu for 2 people?

The same generosity goes for the single-layer Unagi Hitsumabushi. You can also opt for a one-and-a-half layer and double-layer portion, but since it’s only just the 2 of us that time, I figured the single-layer was enough.

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It turned out so much more than enough. We actually had to sit down there for a good 45 minutes after we paid our bills to wait till all the carbs go down. Like I said, I usually enjoy my chazuke with cooked salmon or tuna, but this is my first with unagi.

There are a couple of ways you can enjoy this dish. You can enjoy your bowl of unajyu as it is – with the sweet and savory unagi on top of the perfectly cooked rice.

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But you can also blend all the details alongside your rice bowl onto that empty one. Pour your soup (it’s the teapot) onto the empty bowl, add a few ounces of wasabi, pickles, nori, and onions, then mix them well. Then add a few spoonfuls of your unajyu onto the broth, blend them some more, and enjoy.

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Seriously divine. Can I just say this is now my favorite way of enjoying ochazuke? There’s no other meat that can match the thick, feathery quality of Unacho’s sweet, sweet char-grilled eel. When you have fish with chazuke, it can get tasteless sometimes. Then again, you always get those thin and overly seasoned eel in most local restaurants. This one’s just a perfectly balanced cocktail of sweet, bitter, salty, sour, and umami, plus a lot more textures that ranges from soothing liquid to crunchy pickles. The Japanese are just genius.

As Ross says, Unagi. I guess in this case, dining is truly a state of mind.

 
 
 

Unacho うな兆櫃まぶし


Senayan
Plaza Senayan,
2nd Floor, Unit 201-202D
Jl. Asia Afrika No. 8
Jakarta Selatan 10270
+62 (0)21 5790 6080
Visit Facebook page at Unacho Hitsumabushi
Follow @Unacho_PS on Twitter
www.unacho-hitsumabushi.com

Operating hours:

M – S 10:00am – 10:00pm
 
 
 
 
 


Stace

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