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May 3, 2011

Chef's Combination Platter

For my birthday dinner last week I dined at Iron Chef Morimoto’s aptly named restaurant, Morimoto in Philadelphia.  It was definitely a much higher caliber restaurant than we usually visit and our second restaurant this tour created by an Iron Chef.  It was a night of excess and perfect for birthday celebrations. My waitress recommended the White Pear cocktail (Grey Goose Le Poire, Morimoto Junmai Sake, and elderflower syrup), which was very light, just slightly fruity, and garnished with flower petals (read: far too easy to drink). We started off with oysters for the table which we’re good, but nothing like a good briny Duxbury oyster. The meal only went up from there. We ordered the Chef’s Combination sushi platter that was a mix of sushi, nagiri, and sashimi with a good variety of fish (tuna, bass, salmon, snapper, mackerel) and some items new to me: sea urchin and shrimp pound cake. The sea urchin (top right of above photo) tasted good, but was so slimy I did not reach for another.  I sampled my coworker’s Morimoto Ramen Soup that was light years beyond the packets of dried noodles. The broth was the best part and tasted like liquefied chicken and gold.

For my entree I had the Ishi Yaki Bop with kobe beef. It is a dish prepared table-side in a stone pot heated to 375 degrees. The raw beef is placed along the inside walls of the bowl and cooks from the residual heat to medium rare. While the beef is cooking, the chef mixes the rice in the center of the bowl with an egg, a variety of vegetables, and a miso soy sauce. It was so much fun to watch the meal being made in front of me and it was the perfect closer to a thoroughly entertaining meal.

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