Sunday, December 20, 2009

Hot and Soupy #3: Kaori Sushi, $50 Omakase, and Lobster Soup

I try not to come down to Orange County much (what would I do there?), but when I have to (i.e. when former roommate Kat's 9 Lives demands a visit from me), I ask for good food. The last I visited her in OC I was coaxed with some omakase at Kaori, a Korean-run sushi joint in Fullerton.

OK, this visit was actually quite some time ago, but I thought it would be an appropriate post for the "hot and soupy" series because the most memorable part of the meal was the lobster miso soup.

Now why would I go have omakase at a korean-run sushi place in Fullerton of all places? Well, Kat's previous report of a $50 omakase that included live lobster was pretty enticing.
Apparently you can call ahead and tell him you want to spend $50 and that you want the lobster soup so he can go buy lobster for you.

Turns out here at Kaori, $50 goes a long way.

We started with some vegetable tempura, followed by some Ankimo with ponzu sauce.

The came a plate of softshell crab.
Nice and crunchy although a tad heavy on the sauce.

Amaebi

Marinated oyster.
The Sashimi plates were also pretty impressive. We got two plates throughout the night consisting of toro, uni, hamachi belly, and more.
While they aren't the best pieces of sashimi you'd find around town, the quality and variety were both quite good considering the price we were paying.

A series of sushi came next, from Albacore belly to Ono with jalapeno ponzu sauce.

The sushi chef Gino showed his own flair too with local ingredients, as exemplified with the Anaheim Chili stuffed with salmon, topped with sriracha sauce.
It was just a li~ttle spicy for my level (I'm training, believe me), but it was a pretty creative dish. An Asian, fishy take on Chile Relleno?

Finally came the main attraction. The headliner of the night. Live lobster!
Live lobster sashimi in a $50 omakase? You have to call ahead and tell him you want it so he can go buy one for you, but if you do, a lobster will be killed and snapped in front of you.

Well, enough with the gore. Here's the delicious part: Live Lobster Sashimi
That's not all though. The best part is still to come. After you're done with the tail sashimi, he will take the rest and make an amazing Lobster Miso Soup.
This was the tour de force of the meal. The soup had so much flavor and texture from the miso base, the bits of lobster meat, and - perhaps the key secret ingredient - the lobster eggs which really added a lot of texture.

The meal ended with a simple matcha ice cream. Being my first time here, I was actually rather worried at the end, incredulous that the meal would actually only cost $50, but there it was on the bill: $50 per person.

Definitely a great deal for some omakase and while the sushi isn't at the level of the top joints in town, the lobster miso soup is worth a try.

Kaori Japanese Restaurant
500 N Harbor Blvd #C
Fullerton, CA 92832
(714) 871-9395
Kaori Japanese Restaurant on Urbanspoon
Kaori Japanese Restaurant in Los Angeles

9 comments:

weezermonkey

How did all that only cost $50?!

Ravenous Couple

if someone forces us to to OC...we'll have to try this! thanks! :)

burumun

I was pleasantly surprised too when I got the bill! We did call ahead and told them we were coming for omakase so he got special fish and the lobster for us, I think their regular selection may not be as big.

But a great deal, for sure!

SinoSoul

VIDEO!!! killed the blogger star? I've read about this place but for $50, I demand a Korean handjob in addition to lobster. And that, apparently, is harder to find.

Wandering Chopsticks

Such a great deal. With live lobster too. We should go!

Aaron

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4dhoDxEK5w

Do you think the chef goes out to find female lobsters to make sure the eggs flavor the miso soup?

burumun

Aaron: Haha that boy is so stubborn. But cute nonetheless.
I think the chef does pick the females. Can't be that hard to distinguish?

Kung Food Panda

Now this is a good deal!m

Sadao

How can the restaurant possibly make money serving all that. Lucky for you.

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