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Yamato - Comfort Food Japanese Style
New Review
11 Lochrin Terrace,
City of Edinburgh,

I've come to the conclusion that eating Japanese food isn't intimidating anymore. In the past, I've worried about what the right protocol was; do I order sushi as a starter or ramen noodles or miso soup? Is tempura prawn classed as a main? I'm going with the flow at Yamato, ordering what takes my fancy and wait to see what arrives first!

The fish is fresh, and Max (who is from the now closed Sushiya) takes time to describe their differences, explaining that the bluefin tuna is particularly good, much better than the yellowfin.

Settling down with the menus, I'm struck by how many different sakes there are - some served ice cold from the fridge like the yuzu one that catches my eye, Mr H decides on a more traditional sake served in stoneware bottle, heated in hot water-filled pottery jars.

We chose eight dishes waiting in an-tis-ci-pation as I sip on the pale jade-coloured yuzu sake that is deliciously refreshing, cold and zesty. He has to wait for his to warm up as the first dish appears- crispy Brussels sprouts.

Oh my, you'll be hard pushed not to love it - caramelised pine nuts and yuzu dressing complements the slightly charred, bitter leaves. Next to arrive are the lotus crisps and salty edamame that make fab nibbles with the warm cherry flavoured sake. He looks a little confused, asking if we're supposed to eat the whole pod. I pick one up, sucking the tender beans from its green casing.

Bluefin tuna belly nigiri is picture pretty - two pink fish slices hiding soft sticky rice, the only seasoning is a quick dunk into some soy sauce (as much as I love wasabi, it would be too pungent against the delicate fish).

Next up, ethereal tempura prawns and veggies; a gentle nibble shatters the batter that's so delicate and light it doesn't mask the sweetness of the ingredients.

This is followed by the Wagyu nigiri - smoky, soft, and sensually yielding. This time I can't resist daubing a little of the wasabi onto the meat. Last to the party is the seared tuna with the tang of the sea, is clean tasting and über fresh, while the crispy rice of the sushi rolls adds a crunchy balance to the avocado cream, spicy tuna, topped with lumpfish roe that gives a salty pop.
Yamato is somewhere I'd happily go back especially for a glass of that yuzu sake, a bowl edamame and a bowl of the Brussels sprout salad!


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