Sushi Muramoto @ Hilldale

Where are you eating and what do you think? What's opening, closing, succeeding, failing?
cubanat
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Sushi Muramoto @ Hilldale

Postby cubanat » Wed Apr 25, 2007 10:17 am

Word on the street is it's FANTASTIC. I'll report back after lunch on Thursday. I hope this location doesn't hurt the original Restauranr Muramoto on King.

TAsunder
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Postby TAsunder » Wed Apr 25, 2007 12:20 pm

Pay special heed to the prices, if you would. I'm concerned they will be high.

What is the name of this place?

ericj
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Postby ericj » Wed Apr 25, 2007 12:28 pm

it's open already?

cubanat
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Postby cubanat » Wed Apr 25, 2007 2:41 pm

"Sushi Muramoto" is the name I believe. I will make note of prices for you. It opened last week.

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Postby TheBookPolice » Wed Apr 25, 2007 2:53 pm

From Madison Magazine:

Divided into three sections with a full bar, this simple yet elegant restaurant does not distract from its main focus--the food. Grab a front row seat at the sushi bar for an entertaining dining experience. Its low counter seating is perfect for watching chefs prepare both traditional types of sushi as well as more unusual Shinji creations. While the menu boasts an extensive selection of fresh nigiri sushi and a variety of sushi rolls, there will be an assortment of contemporary Japanese favories in addition to other small- and large-plate entrees served in the more formal atmosphere of the dining room.


And yes, the name is Sushi Muramoto.

TAsunder
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Postby TAsunder » Wed Apr 25, 2007 5:06 pm

Holy cow! They finally got a web site! Rejoice!

NullDevice
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Postby NullDevice » Thu Apr 26, 2007 10:23 am

I went there on friday.

It was pretty good. It felt a little overpriced (the downtown one doesn't) for the regular entrees, but the sushi looked great.

What was nice was that the portions were not microscopic. Often I go to a japanese restaurant, order an appetizer and get a single braised leek floating in clear soup or something like that. I ordered a battered chicken in broth and it came with enough that I could share it with the table. That was nice. And my black code with miso - a nouveau-japanese-food standard - was excellent, moist and flaky fish with that nice salty-sour flavor of miso. It came, unfortunately, with a somewhat uninspiring iceberg lettuce salad in miso dressing, and some "house-spiced potatoes" which were, as far as I could discern, fried potatoes sprinkled with some shichimi togarashi. They weren't bad, but as an accompaniment to the fish they were a bit underwhelming. It's my own fault, I suppose, since you get your choice of sides.

My companions had the curried halibut and the ribeye steak, respectively. The halibut looked good, although Chuck was a little quiet about the food overall (he did like the miso soup he had instead of a salad - it smelled like one of the better miso soups, certainly). My girlfriend's steak was tender, although I thought a little bland, but the soy-butter sauce it came with was nicely rich. The satsuma-mashed-potatoes were fluffy and had a slightly sweet flavor to them that went well with the food.

Oddly, the closest we had to sushi was when chuck ordered a "philly roll" which, being smoked salmon and cream cheese, doesn't exactly show off the sushi chef's skill or the freshness of the ingredients. I'm saving the sushi for another dedicated-sushi trip.

The sake selection is not as large as the downtown location either, but was robust enough to give a number of choices, including a few nigori selections.

So it was good, in short. A bit expensive, and a little uneven, but I think given a few weeks to settle in it will do nicely. As the name implies, it seems the sushi is the star attraction.

cubanat
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Postby cubanat » Mon Apr 30, 2007 12:15 pm

Food was great. The room is cool and spacious and well lit (as opposed to King St location). Service was poor but friendly enough (new staff I guess but...) Prices add up quickly if your a glutton. The lunch specials are awesome just like the King St. location. My review was longer & more detailed but an error occured on the forum as I was posting it so sorry for the general bluntness.

statz
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Postby statz » Tue May 01, 2007 9:56 pm

Oh Jesus, can anyone make an intelligent comment on the food that actually sounds like it came from someone who knows something about cooking!

Yes this place is good, the sushi menu is good. Fluke should be on all sushi daily menus and the specialty rolls are unique. Hope this eatery lasts but won't hold my breath.

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Postby auntgoodness » Wed May 02, 2007 8:34 am

The shrimp tempura, she is spicy!

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Postby TAsunder » Wed May 02, 2007 8:40 am

Statz, thank you so much for coming down from mount olympus to impart your godly cooking knowledge upon us. Without you, we'd never have such useful information about sushi muramoto such as "the sushi menu is good" or "the specialty rolls are unique", nor would we know that we are all unintelligent hacks who know nothing about "cooking".

I'm not entirely sure how much knowledge of the act of cooking is required for sushi discussions, but apparently it's a lot. One must be very delicate with the rice cooker used, apparently, being that the rice is practically the only thing actually being cooked.

cubanat
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Postby cubanat » Wed May 02, 2007 9:45 am

Yeah Statz ya' fuckin' moron.

NullDevice
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Postby NullDevice » Wed May 02, 2007 2:09 pm

Well, then, what else would you like to know?

The black cod was prepared with marinade that consisted primarily of aka miso and dashi. Honestly I prefer it done with moromi miso instead, as I think the nuttier flavor of that particular miso compliments the fish better and also serves as a more robust base for additional flavors. But that's just me.

The potatoes were oven-roasted until crispy with a rub of shichimi togarashi (a japanese spice blend consisting of red chili, black sesame seeds, dried orange peel, sansho pepper, dried nori, and other spices). It did not overpower the potatoes, but was essentially lost against the starchy backdrop and only provided a not-entirely-complimetary aftertaste.

The karaage chicken appetizer thankfully only used a light batter (although it was eggier than a classic tempura) and didn't attempt to adulterate it with the near-omnipresent panko that most japanese restaurants use in fried batters as a shortcut to crispiness. It was served with small amount of homemade dashi stock with shaved dried bonito garnish.

My sake was a fairly dry Kurosawa. I beleive it was a daiginjo, but since I only ordered a glass and not the bottle, I couldn't verify.

disclaimer: since none of the chefs provided me with a recipe booklet, I've had to reverse-engineer the food based solely on flavor, and I cannot guarantee accuracy.

That enough info?

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Postby TAsunder » Fri May 04, 2007 8:53 am

I went there with a couple of friends last night. The food was great, but once the restaurant got a little crowded, the service became incredibly slow. Or rather, the time it took our food to come out.

We order a total of 7 rolls (technically, we ordered 8, more on that later) and one appetizer. Before our appetizers came out a couple near us had their food arrive. Two entrees, and they smelled really delicious. We couldn't easily identify which dishes they were. Everything on the entree menu looked pretty good.

We ordered the chicken appetizer (forgot the name) which was fried chicken bits with shredded daikon. It was ok. Interesting, but unremarkable.

For sushi we chose the "chef's choice" 3 maki roll combination, california roll, spicy shrimp, eel, and pickled radish. The maki combo ended up being a dragon roll, a philly roll, and a gourd roll.

All were good. We all didn't really care as much for the philly roll - I have never been a huge fan. The salmon in the roll was terrific, but the cream cheese, as is usually the case, overpowered the salmon. The gourd was surprisingly good, and had a much stronger flavor than most gourd rolls I've had.

The dragon roll was a little unusual for dragon rolls - other places have avocado and eel on each piece, but this one seemed to alternate between the two on the outside. Nonetheless we all enjoyed it, and as one who often dislikes the "bottom of the sea" flavor of some eel offerings at other places (including restaurant muramoto), I was pleasantly surprised. So much so that I suggested we get another eel roll, which was good, but not as good as the dragon roll.

The spicy shrimp was much better than the spicy shrimp and other "spicy" rolls I've had elsewhere. I'm not sure what they put in there that was different but it might have been the spicy mayo being a little higher quality.

The pickled diakon was ok, nothing special. It had a stronger flavor than I was expecting (I'm not sure if I've had pickled diakon sushi before), but I felt the gourd roll was the superior of the two veggie rolls.

We actually ordered 5 rolls first, then decided we were still hungry and tried to order 3 more. After an extensive wait, we were informed that they had run out of yellow tail (which was among our second order of 3). By this time we were already somewhat impatient and decided to skip the 3rd roll and just eat the other two.

The selection of maki was a lot less interesting than the selection of nigiri. The specialty rolls numbered less than ten, all looked good, and ran about $12-18. They were the only items that were somewhat unique. All the remaining maki was similar to what you could find elsewhere. Although I can't recall if other places have fatty tuna or not (probably). Among the specialty rolls, I only remember the dragon roll at other places, although many rolls were fairly similar to what you'd find elsewhere.

My favorite "specialty" roll is the naruto roll at takara, which was not present here. I was also somewhat disappointed that the wonderful duck sushi that they have at Restaurant Muramoto was not present on the menu.

The nigiri selection was much more impressive. Next time I will try many of those. They had some interesting items such as Kobe beef and foie gras, and some three dozen other choices, including enough varieties of tuna that you can order a tuna combination.

The prices were quite reasonable. All in all our meal cost $75 including tip and tax and three drinks. The only real major issue was the slowness of our second sushi order arriving. I would strongly encourage you to go during less busy times.

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Postby cubanat » Wed May 09, 2007 10:30 pm

Went back and had apps & cocktails. #1- the shrimp tempura appetizer is one of the best dishes in the city. #2- they need to hire more servers! If they had better service they would be perfect. The steak salad was also heavenly.


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