Saturday, June 5, 2010

Uoshin, Shibuya (魚真)

The Uoshins are a small chain of fish-focused higher-end izakaya, and this outlet is oddly located just across the street from the north side of Dogenzaka. It's convenient for all your Dogenzaka needs (and I'll refrain from including the other pictures I took in the neighborhood, OK?), and has the well-oiled reliability of a store where they've gotten the concept right and are repeating it to good effect. Great fish, good prices. Can't go wrong.

Pleasant touches in the atmosphere too, especially if you're sitting at the counter. It's interesting how young the chefs are; they seem to be having a good time and still getting the job done professionally. It's still incongruous to me when the chef has half his head shaved and looks 25, but when he shows off his knife skills I feel much better.

I still don't know how to describe junsai adequately. I've seen it translated as water shield, and the 'distinctive gelatinous slime...coating the stems' certainly sounds familiar. If you haven't had it, let's just leave off on the descriptions until you're able to sample the gelatinous slime for yourself. I order it willingly, if that's any help.

That's a big plate of fish, and it includes some semi-fancy stuff like tailagai and isaki and a double-serving of tai, and it was $15. That's very good, trust me.

Also very good was lightly deep-fried bits of sea bass in a thick black-vinegar sweet-and-sour sauce. Sensitively-fried, and the sauce was pleasant and complex rather than gloppy and nasty as it could be.

Let me just sneak in that they only have half-a-dozen types of sake, but they're good ones. There's a bit more shochu, umeshu, etc.

Finally, a whole grilled nodoguro, for which there doesn't seem to be an English name. He doesn't look that happy, but what with the fat, and the flavor, and the crispy skin, we were. Arrrrrrr!

I dunno, call it industrial or call it a chain, it's still good food at good prices.

Aha, now I remember! I wanted to go here in Shimokita, but it was full. We ended up at Tobusakana, which is much the same in environment, quality and price.

1 comment:

  1. nice to see this review; uoshin is one of my locals. i think this shop is actually 4番サード魚真, which is the annex of the shibuya shop a few blocks away. though i must say that this shop has better atmosphere. i know many people poo-poo multiple branch izakayas; i go back to uoshin for its consistently good food. but then again, i tend to favour stores that stock a certain shizuoka sake ;)
    lucky you, getting to EAT the nodoguro. i've ordered it 3 times at the ebisu store, but for some reason or other it's never materialized. the nogizaka store is my favourite of the group - it's a lively place with outdoor seating in the summer. worth a visit.