Ever heard about Omakase? According to Wikipedia, Omakase (お任せ o-makase) is a Japanese phrase that means “I’ll leave it to you” (from Japanese “to entrust” (任せる makaseru)), which basically means that everything we eat will be up to the chef. Japanese restaurants in Jakarta usually set quite a high price for an Omakase session, so I’m very excited to hear that my favorite sushi joint, Umaku, provides Omakase at a reasonable price. Following a conversation on twitter, a group of foodies and bloggers agreed to go for an Omakase in Umaku’s Duren Tiga branch.
I remembered that it rained pretty hard in Jakarta on the agreed date, causing floods in several areas. But it didn’t make us postpone the session, although we had to start a bit later due to the night’s traffic. So after all of our party arrived, we gathered at the sushi bar. Chef Uki and Chef Syaiful were already busily preparing our meal. The sushi will be served on a marble table and it is OK to pick the sushi by hand. So without further ado, let’s begin the Omakase.
For the starter, we’re served with wafu salad consisting of some veggies, wakame (seaweed), cherry tomatoes with light dressing. It was light and refreshing. Next, salmon sashimi was put in front of us. In my opinion, nothing could go wrong with fresh salmon sashimi in the hand of a good chef.
It was then followed by a bowl of maguro natto, maguro (tuna) mixed with natto (fermented soy beans), wakegi (spring onions), nori (seaweed) and shoyu (soy sauce). A bold move by Chef Uki considering that natto is something of an acquired taste. I’ve tried natto before, but didn’t quite like the taste and texture. This one, though, was surprisingly enjoyable.
Next came mekajiki sashimi (sword fish), a bit thick and chewy but delicious. After that we’re served with ika sashimi (squid) served rolled with wakegi (spring onions). I’m not a big fan of ika sashimi, so this one is just OK for me, although some of my dinner companions claimed that this is the best ika sashimi they’ve ever had.
Moving on, we got yakimono (grilled dish), starting with kushiyaki (skewered grilled meat) consisting of ebi (prawn), ika(squid) and toro (fatty tuna) marinated in shoyu and sansho pepper so it was tasty with a little spicy hint.
After that, we’re served with a bowl of hiyashi somen which is a delicate wheat noodles served cold in tsuyu sauce with a strong hint of ginger. The tsuyu sauce usually serves as a dipping sauce, but in this session it was served together with the noodle. It was very refreshing and suitable for a hot summer or dry season night.
Next came something I have never eaten before: akami nimono which is a hearty soup made from shiru stock flavored with sake and soy sauce plus tuna’s fin. The meat was surprisingly very thick and tender. I got a big chunk and relished each bite.
After that, we were served toro sushi AKA fatty tuna served on a slightly warm sushi rice with a dash of shoyu on top. Simply delicious. Followed by ebi sushi (prawn sushi), also good and tako sushi (octopus sushi), which was also good.
Kani miso soup was served next, the crab was delicious, but the soup was a tad too salty. Next, came toro aburi sushi, seared fatty tuna, it tasted even better than the sake aburi (seared salmon) sushi I usually had. Superb! I’ll definitely order this the next time I’m in Umaku.
Then we got sake goma abura sushi which was salmon sushi topped with goma (sesame), sesame oil and spring onion. It really takes the ordinary sake sushi to the next level with a more complex flavor.
After that came shitake aburi sushi which is basically seared shitake mushroom on top of sushi rice, also tasted good. Next, we’re given tamago temaki, the Japanese omelette and rice were hand rolled with nori in ginza style, simply delicious. After that we’re given another sushi which was unagi sushi the fresh water eel was marinated and precooked in tare (soy basting sauce that tasted slightly sweet) and sprinkled with sansho pepper, it also tasted very good.
With that much food, we felt very full, but still we’re spoiled with mochi ice cream with three flavor to choose from: mango, imo (taro) and matcha (green tea).
Overall, it was a great night, we had a total of 17 dishes which are three kinds of sashimi plus maguro natto, yakimono, somen, nimono, eight kinds of sushi, soup, and dessert that cost only 145K+. Very reasonable right? So if you want to have an unforgettable Omakase experience, just call and reserve at least several days prior.
PS: sorry for the blurry pictures, apparently my camera is not good for low light or maybe my hands was shaking that night 🙂
Umaku Duren Tiga
Jl. Duren Tiga Raya no.32, Jakarta Selatan
p. +62(21) 79170337