4

Laudig in Japan: Izakaya Feast at Yamadaya

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

I've been going to Japan every year for quite a while now, but I never get tired of a plate of sashimi this gorgeous. This was just the first of many courses at the fabulous Yamadaya, an izakaya near the famous Tsukiji fish market that chef Nobuo Fukuda had recommended to me last year. They were closed for some remodeling at the time, so this go-round, they were at the top of my list. Our server recommended eating the sashimi with a dab of wasabi and sea salt instead of soy sauce.


My old friends Yuko and Chinatsu were my enthusiastic dining companions. I've been going out to eat with these girls since college, and I owe a lot of my Japanese food geek knowledge to experiences we've shared. 


The place was packed. We sat at the counter and proceeded to order course after course. A couple hours later, we'd eaten practically everything on the menu.

​This, by the way, was the menu -- what a pain to read! But I'm getting better at deciphering this kind of thing, after much practice. 

​The amuse bouche was a juicy chicken meatball in light broth.

​Sweet, tender salmon roe glistened on thin layers of potato.

​Oysters are in season and I got these two all to myself!

​If you've never had Japanese fried chicken (kara age), you have to try it. It's so crispy and bursting with juice that a whole plate disappears in minutes.

​I must have a separate stomach for sashimi because we ordered even more. This time, it was fresh saba, with beautiful gleaming skin.

​Next, more chicken -- a variety of parts done yakitori-style, eaten with a dab of salt and a squeeze of lemon. Amazing how many flavors and textures come from one bird.

​There were a couple more courses we destroyed before I remembered to take a picture. At this point, we'd had three different kinds of sake. I remember one was called Kaze no Mori, and another was the daiginjo version of Kaze no Mori. The final dish was a helping of seafood-studded rice, presented in the pan like paella before portions were dished up. It definitely helped soak up the sake.

Hungry yet? I'll post some more pictures tomorrow . . .



Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.