Sunday, February 20, 2011
Endo Sushi @ Osaka Fish Market
I am not sure what made me include Osaka Fish Market into our itinerary when Tsukiji was already part of it. I figure you can never get enough of sushi nor sashimi where it is the freshest and bestest? Unlike its over the top famous distant cousin of Tsukiji, Osaka Fish Market is more understated. Located near JR Noda Station, or so the map suggested. It took us a grand total of an hour of walking through lanes and alleys (very residential! But it was lovely walking through and experiencing urban Japan) and three quarts a wholesale market to locate Endo Sushi. Endo Sushi has been raved about too much online for me to give this a miss.
Unlike Tsukiji, Osaka's Fish Market boasts of one sushi shop alongside several other food stalls. Its signature blue flag is hard to miss and it does not hurt double confirming it when you're inside. We were lucky enough to nab a seat upon entering.
Mugs of green tea get passed around soon enough, perfect for a wintry day. Not the bestest green tea with the powdery bitter aftertaste yet, for any sushi meal this is a must.
Their sushi is served in portions of 5 (1050 Yen) and it takes 3 plates to complete tasting their range of catch for the day. Every table is placed with a jar of soysauce, brush and pickled ginger. I particularly enjoyed brushing my sushi with sweet sauce.
Sweet eel, sea urchin, tuna belly...
Ika, tuna belly, scallops, arc shell, eel...
Lobster, tamago, tuna maki and some other fish..
Fish so fresh well covering the ball of rice kneaded so compact. Undisputed best of osaka, if I could be arrogant about it.
Miso soup, always a must.
Miso Soup (830 Yen) has to be the priciest miso soup to date. The usual soy sauced flavour soup that I am used to is continents away from this. Like Cantonese soup, this is filled with clams and flavour...made with love indeed. The complexity and density of flavours could be tasted with each sip.
Each bite was heaven. Eating sushi whole and in bites makes a whole lot of difference and through the trip, the chefs do encourage you to eat it down whole. The contrast of cold fish on a warm ball of rice was awesome! So awesome, indeed.
The sign of satisfaction.
Endo Sushi barely requires the legendary wait of Daiwa Sushi or Sushi Dai in Tsukiji. For the freshest catch, a visit to a fish market is most encouraged.Largely patronised by the Japanese, this cannot get more authentic than anything else. The locals usually drive there...for obvious reasons. I do not think anyone would bother trekking for an hour to find it!
I had to venture into the market grounds for the fun of it though the fresh fruit area was only open to businesses - think cartons of fruit per sale only. Fun experience at the wholesale market, Endo sparked off the start of a longdrawn sushi craving.