At Sake-Tumi a new chef managed a Restaurant Week menu that was ambitious in both variety and flavor. Having earned a local reputation for more than just its sushi, Sake-Tumi’s selection offers several excellent options.
For our dinner, we opted to start with gyoza. These pork-and-chicken-filled dumplings were fried to a delicate crisp, giving a classic start to start the meal.
The chef was kind enough to let us try all of the main dishes on the Restaurant Week dinner menu. First, we tried Korean tacos served with kimchi coleslaw and wonton chips. Both the pork and beef options were delicious, but we definitely recommend pork over beef for the classic Korean barbecue taste. The tacos may command the most attention on the plate, but the fried wonton chips and kimchi slaw should not be overlooked.
Next, we tried the new firefighter roll with soft-shell crab, eel, cream cheese, spicy mayo and avocado. Each piece required at least two, solid, delicious bites. The eel gave the dish a nice texture and great flavor that would make the new sushi chef’s predecessor proud.
The following two dishes were the weakest of the evening. First came a bowl of ramen, with scallions, soft boiled egg, Wakame (a seaweed variety) and bamboo shoots. The broth, which was lacking in quantity, had both shellfish and pork. However, the pork flavor didn’t really come through, leaving the shellfish’s fishy aftertaste as the most memorable part of the soup. The Saikoro steak was served with white rice, ponzu sauce, scallions, chili threads and plum chutney. The meat was tough, although not overcooked, and the rice was cold, clumpy and clashed with the sauce.
The final entrée that we tried was a red pepper coconut chicken curry with bamboo shoots, leeks and chili threads. The chili threads seemed unnecessary, but the curry was perfectly applied and the chicken and vegetables mixed well. The flavors were deep but not overpowering, spicy but reasonable, and just plain tasty.
After our huge meal, we didn’t think we had room for dessert, especially when the waiter placed odd-looking balls of dough on the table. Even before we put them in our mouth, a waitress described the dessert perfectly to us: a cold dough with the consistency of pizza. We eventually figured out that it was mochi — ice cream wrapped in a Japanese dough. It was unbelievably good. We also sampled the apple bread pudding tempura with miso caramel sauce and vanilla ice cream, a dessert that managed to be warm, cold and delicious all at once.
If you’re planning to go to Sake-Tumi this weekend, we recommend the gyoza for your appetizer, followed either by the firefighter roll if you want sushi, or the Korean tacos if you’re not feeling fish. For dessert, your best bet is the mochi ice cream. Ideally, go with a date or a group of friends and share — you’ll want to try it all.