A rare and raw delight as Satuma passes the sushi trial
PUBLISHED: 14:25 19 December 2008 | UPDATED: 15:43 07 September 2010
BY BEN McPARTLAND You would be forgiven for not noticing Kentish Town s new Japanese restaurant Satuma when you stroll along Fortess Road looking for somewhere to eat. And if you don t spot this traditional sushi restaurant that comes with a Korean twist
BY BEN McPARTLAND
You would be forgiven for not noticing Kentish Town's new Japanese restaurant Satuma when you stroll along Fortess Road looking for somewhere to eat. And if you don't spot this traditional sushi restaurant that comes with a Korean twist, you will almost certainly regret it.
As a previous non-sushi lover it was about time I gave this oriental cuisine a fair crack and I have to say I am glad I chose Satuma for my first real experience of Japanese food.
It may not be the biggest eatery around but the quality of the food and the service means it has nothing to feel inferior about.
The fact that everything is prepared just a few feet away from the tables means diners can feel a part of the cooking and preparation.
For starters try the chicken or seafood Gyoza or dumplings as we might call them. They are perfect to whet the appetite and prepare the taste buds for what is to come.
Although the menu offers a variety of dishes ranging from grilled eel with kabayaki sauce to Beef sirloin steak with the chef's special wafu sauce it is the sushi that any Japanese restaurant should be judged on.
And after taking spicy tuna and spring onion maki plus salmon and mackerel sushi I was converted to raw fish for life.
It was the freshness and flavour that stood out. As always with sushi it was immaculately presented along with its usual accompaniments of fresh ginger, wasabi paste and soya sauce.
You knew you were eating something fresh, healthy, natural, and different from anything else going.
For some reason Chicken Teriyaki makes me think of your average cheep take away dinner but not any longer. Satuma's Chicken Teriyaki was another flavour to savour. Again it was cooked to perfection and perfect-sized proportion.
As mentioned earlier, Satuma is no ordinary Sushi restaurant for its Korean manager Moon-Sang Park has brought a taste of his native country to the menu.
I went for Beef Bibimbab - a traditional Korean dish of mixed vegetables, marinated beef and the subtly spicy gochujang sauce accompanied by rice as well as and egg which is served in the piping hot stone bowl it is cooked in. Do I need to say again it was fresh and tasty?
Make sure you get an explanation of the dish and its origin from the friendly and knowledgeable Mr Park, who is also useful in demonstrating how to eat sushi in the correct manner.
Satuma is a definite bonus for Kentish Town's burgeoning restaurant scene. My trial by sushi lived long in the memory of the taste buds and they have been crying out for me to go back.
I am sure the diners who fill the NW5's numerous gastro pubs will soon be opting to head down to this compact eatery - but not all at once because you might have to wait to get a table.
Oh and it the restaurant is currently applying for an alcohol license so you can take advantage of the 'bring your own booze' scheme.
8 Fortess Road
Tel: 020 7485 7078
Food: five star rating
Service: five star rating
Opening hours Monday - Saturday 12pm to 2.30pm and 5.30pm to 10.30pm
The restaurant also offers take away service special Bento boxes at lunch time, which are filled with a variety of dishes.
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