The Arcade Independence Square
is a melting pot of new and ambitious projects. One such establishment many have been asking about, is the new Japanese restaurant- Tsukiji Uoichi. They offer pretty much any quintessential Japanese dish you can think of, and for the most part they do it quite well, falling in the mid range of pricing between the likes of Nihonbashi
at the higher-end and Sakura
at the lower.
Japanese cuisine is known for it's simple yet sophisticated nature, with an emphasis on the quality of the ingredients used. When it comes to the likes of Sushi which is generally made up of 3-4 ingredients, even the slightest of shortcomings tend to be glaringly noticeable. A Sushi chef generally requires years of training before they are even allowed cook for a service. So when we walked into Tsukiji Uoichi, we were surprised to see a mostly young crew of chefs. The food isn't particularly cheap at around Rs.2000 per head, but all things considered it's difficult to find high quality Japanese cuisine at much lower. The menu was very extensive, almost comparable to that of Nihonbashi, with all the classic Japanese dishes as well as some interesting fusion dishes. We appreciated the fact that they had broken down the pricing from Rs.200 for smaller individual dishes, all the way up to Rs.4000 for the dishes which came with imported choice cuts of meat.
We ordered the Assorted 9 piece Nigiri (Rs.1580), Classic Karaage (Rs.580), Seafood Chahan (Rs.680) and Ebi Tempura (Rs.980), all of which was sufficient for three. The 9 piece Nigiri came with 2 Maguro (tuna), 1 Tamagoyaki (egg), 1 Ika (squid), 2 Shiromi (white fish), 1 Ebi (Prawn) and 2 Salmon Nigiri, served with a relatively mild Wasabi. All of the seafood was fresh and showed skilled knifemanship, and the rice had just the right amount of vinegar. We did find ourselves adding a lot more Wasabi than we usually would, since it was quite a bit milder than what we're used to. The only one we weren't particularly happy with was the Tamagoyaki which lacked a bit of flavour, but all in all we were quite happy with the Sushi.
The Karaage was fried well, not at all soggy and had the right amount seasoning and spice on the batter. The seafood Chahan which is the Japanese fried rice, came in a generous portion which was more than enough for 3. While it had a good amount seafood mixed in, it lacked a bit of flavour and wasn't as sticky as we would have liked, which made it a bit of challenge to eat with chopsticks.
The prawns in the Ebi Tempura were fresh and cooked well. The batter had a good thickness and crunch to it, although we felt the batter itself could have used a bit more seasoning, but nothing a bit of soy sauce couldn't mitigate. It was served with some Karapincha fried in Tempura batter as well which was a nice addition.
Ambience and Service
When you think of a Japanese restaurant you’re likely to see tatami mats and other traditional decor, but if you were to walk into Tsukiji Uoichi without knowing what type of restaurant it is, then you probably wouldn’t guess its Japanese because most of the interior has contemporary decor. As you walk in the door the first thing you’ll see is the sushi bar which also doubles as the waiting area when other tables are occupied. They’ve got an open kitchen as well, so you can see everything that goes on.
For a place that’s only been operational for little over a week, the staff was surprisingly efficient. Our orders were ready in less than 15 minutes, at a time when the restaurant was filled to capacity. The employees were friendly and knowledgeable, and the 2 managers were actively speaking to customers to get feedback.
Japanese cuisine has been gaining popularity over the past 2 years, with a bunch of new eateries popping up. Tsukiji Uoichi doesn't look to change the status quo, but what it does do is offer a wide range of Japanese dishes, with fresh ingredients, at a decent price. In many ways they're still finding their feet, but from what we experienced we'd say their on the right track.