So a couple months ago, I was in a funk to beat all funks. I mean, storm-cloud over my head, tail-between-my-legs, Eeyore-style funk. I thought,” Okay, seriously? There isn’t much that is going to help here. Ooh. Except Japanese food.”
I’d heard great things about Tomoe, with ace reviews from An American in London amongst other bloggers. And good, fresh fish is something I’ve always taken for granted in Hong Kong but I find more difficult to get in London. So I toddled up Marylebone Lane and headed in.
It was like a bar in Tokyo from the 80’s, but in an awesome way. The staff were really welcoming and asked if I minded sitting at the bar (I didn’t). While I decided on my choices, I asked for a glass of plum wine on the rocks (umeshu). One sip, and I could feel my funk start slipping away…
It wasn’t on the menu, but having read reviews where scallop (hotate) and sea urchin (uni) were mentioned I asked if they had any available today. Happily they did, but had none of the fatty tuna (oh-toro) . I decided to start with two salmon nigiri, one medium fatty tuna (chu-toro), one yellowtail (hamachi), one eel (unagi) and one sea urchin (uni).
When they put the plate in front of me I actually made an audible squeal of glee, much to the surprise of the poor couple dining near me. I didn’t even know where to start. Everything was amazing – fresh, full of flavour and so, so noms. The scallop and uni were my favourites, because when you have sub-par scallop or urchin you really appreciate the good stuff, but the yellowtail and the medium fatty tuna were amazing as well.
I mean, look at that uni… and those plump scallops… phoargh. I was still hungry after the sushi, so I followed some advice from the blogosphere and went for some of the soft-shell crab rolls.
These were great. Freshly fried crab that was crunchy and crispy, but not greasy, and it was a lovely and generous portion. But in a place that offers such great fresh fish, I felt like it was a bit of a shame to go for a deep-fried roll and not enjoy more of that sea goodness. My glass of plum wine was a perfect companion for my meal.
My bill came up to a little more than suggested by some previous reviews, at around £30, but I assumed this was due to the a la carte sushi and the off-menu items. Still, I would have preferred for the bill to be itemised for clarification. I was way too blissed out to even stress out over it, but it’s definitely something to keep in mind when visiting.
The worst thing about reviewing it? I want to go again! Right now! Argh!
62 Marylebone Lane
London W1U 2PB
Closest Tube: Bond Street