Sugared & Spiced

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[TAIPEI] Nomura Sushi 野村壽司

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Nomura Sushi 野村壽司

Address: No. 34, Alley 78, Anhe Rd. Section 1, Taipei / 台北市安和路一段78巷34號
Tel: 02-2755-6587
Hours: 12:00~2:00pm, 6:00pm~9:00pm (closed on Monday)
Price: [lunch] 1200 NTD/set, [dinner] 2500~3300+ NTD/set

Note: venue closed.

Behind the Ren Ai circle and very close to the stylish a poet, Nomura Sushi quietly sits. Opened just a month ago, this 12-seat sushi bar is headed up by Nomura Yuji 野村裕二, a young but experienced sushi chef who has been in the trade for over 15 years. I’m not too familiar with the dining scene in Taipei, but apparently Nomura-san has quite a loyal following from his days at the wildly popular “No Sushi 野壽司”. Well then, let’s take a look at he’s got.

Nomura

A half-opened wooden gate beckons passerby, but as Nomura Sushi is almost always fully booked, you won’t have much luck as a walk-in guest. Reservations highly recommended.

Wooden gate

Upon entering, we were seated at a plain, spotlessly clean sushi bar built from pristine wood. Warm lighting, Ono Lisa in the air, hot tea, warm towels…instant good feeling.

Sushi bar

Sushi bar

While dinner at Nomura costs at least 2500 NTD (and up to 3300+ NTD depending on what you order), lunch is an excellent deal at only 1200 NTD.

Appetizer: grated daikon with dried baby fish

Loved the marinated daikon. Such clean flavor.

Marinated daikon

Nomura-san serves Edomae sushi (江戶前壽司), which, if simply put, is characterized by the use of pre-seasoned fish. Back in the days, sushi were sold on streets by stands when there were no refrigerators, and in order to achieve a longer shelf life, the fish were simmered in broth, immersed in soy sauce, or cured with salt and vinegar. For more details, click here.

Nomura Yuji 野村裕二

The royal procession of Edomae sushi commenced with kinmedai 金目鯛 (golden eye seabream). I’ve only had it 炙り(aburi, or partially grilled), and was delighted to find its clean, sweet taste when left unadorned with the exception of a brushstroke of soy sauce.

Kinmedai 金目鯛

Kohada 小肌 (a type of herring) made quite an impression. The fish itself was fairly strong with a piquant smack of vinegar, but was nicely balanced by a sprinkle of yuzu peel. Like.

Kohada 小肌

Next up, a piece of hirame 比目魚 (fluke/summer flounder).

Hirame 比目魚

Otoro 大トロ (fatty tuna), the all-time crowd-pleaser, needs no further introduction. I did find it interesting that Nomura-san made careful incisions on the fish, presumably to let the soy sauce really sink in – something I had not seen before.

Otoro 大トロ

Then, a sweet and sticky shiroebi 白蝦 (white shrimp) topped with shiso leaf.

Shiroebi 白蝦

Tekkamaki 鉄火巻き (tuna roll), not my usual favorite.

Tekkamaki 鉄火巻き

Following that, a big and crunchy piece of aoyagi 青柳 (round clam) made a satisfying mouthful.

Aoyagi 青柳

I don’t remember much about the akamutsu 赤むつ (deep sea grouper) other than its very soft flesh.

Akamutsu 赤むつ

What blew me away, surprisingly, was a tiny bowl of warm sushi rice topped with fresh ikura いくら. I’m used to eating the marinated, overly salty kind, and was quite enamored with this glistening heap of fresh salmon roe, each a little pop of flavor burst.

Ikura いくら

Ikura いくら

Uni 海胆 (sea urchin), generously piled up in a 軍艦巻き (gunkanmaki). No need to say more.

Uni 海胆

Kappamaki カッパ巻き (cucumber roll) with thin slices of cucumber, a bit of shiso and unknown white fish.

Kappamaki カッパ巻き

An extra mixed fish gunkanmaki topped with fresh scallions and sliced ginger, courtesy of Nomura-san.

Mixed fish gunkanmaki 軍艦巻き

Lastly, a meticulously prepared anago 穴子 (conger eel). Tender, fluffy.

Anago 穴子

A bowl of miso soup, naturally sweet from thoroughly cooked shrimps.

Miso soup

The meal ended with a simple housemade bean curd with brown sugar.

Bean curd with brown sugar

A few more words on Nomura-san. He may seem quiet at first, but if you engage him, he will tell you everything he can about what you are eating. The catch – he can’t communicate much in Chinese and English, so this will only work for those who can speak Japanese.

Nomura-san at work

Nomura-san showed us bottles of artisanal soy sauce his team procured from 小豆島 (Shodoshima), just one of the many examples of how he attempts to carefully select everything used in the restaurant. If you have seen episodes of どっちの料理ショー (one of my all time favorite TV shows), it won’t be difficult for you to conjure up images of obsessed men roaming the globe in order to find the single most premium ingredient for a particular dish.

Soy sauce

Nomura-san also showed us some ingredients he will use for dinner. Given that dinner sets are way pricier than lunch sets, I’m guessing he saves the real good stuff till after dark. I will have to find out on another trip to Taipei.

What’s for dinner?

Though I did not leave Nomura Sushi in the same blissful state as I left Sushi Oyama, I reminded myself that a meal there would’ve costed at least 800 RMB (3600 NTD), whereas our lunch at Nomura was only 1200 NTD. Value for money? Absolutely.

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Written by sugarednspiced

October 11th, 2011 at 11:18 pm

17 Responses to '[TAIPEI] Nomura Sushi 野村壽司'

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  1. [...] It’s located in a quiet neighborhood behind Ren-Ai Circle, very close to a poet and Nomura Sushi. What you can find here: Ippodo hojicha, Christine Ferber jams and jellies, Felsina olive oil, [...]

  2. Exquisite. Simply. Opted for the Omakase lunch, which offered a simply exquisite tasting of the sea and its magic. On offer were many colourful and tasty fish names to remember, but the most memorable were the Kohada (also noted above) and the Kadayama aka “trigger fish”. The Uni, oh my, was further enhanced (if at all possible) by the perfect seaweed wrapping whose texture I had never sensed before — a precise juncture of moistness and crispiness. Just goes to show the attention they have dedicated to such an oft-overlooked yet distinguishing element.

    And by “they”, of course, I refer to the master himself, Nomura-san, and his assistant, Sean, forming a fluent tag-team with almost seamless coordination. Their cuisine aside, they themselves define the humor, humility and character of such a gem in Taipei. Next time, perhaps dinner and with a few dashes of sake too.

    Charlie B.

    26 Nov 11 at 1:09 AM

  3. Hi Charlie, so glad to hear that you enjoyed lunch at Nomura. I told the restaurant team about your comment, and they are so happy to know that people notice the little things, e.g. they are using high-end nori so it leaves only the flavor not the chew.

    sugarednspiced

    28 Nov 11 at 10:35 AM

  4. Thanks, SnS. Who, if I may ask, is “the restaurant team”? Sounds enigmatic, which I can respect too.

    Charlie B.

    28 Nov 11 at 11:46 PM

  5. by “the restaurant team” i just mean the management team behind nomura :) they do go out of their ways to search of quality ingredients!

    sugarednspiced

    30 Nov 11 at 9:58 PM

  6. [...] 英文原版:www.sugarednspiced.com/taipei-nomura [...]

  7. Looks good. I will check this place out next week when in Taipei. The dilemma is to go for the lunch or the dinner. How much better is the dinner in terms of quality and quantity? I’d prefer to go there for the dinner and can accept if it’s at least 1.5 times better than what you experienced at lunch…?

    Felix Wang

    24 May 12 at 2:37 AM

  8. i’ve never been for dinner so i can’t really tell you. lunch was good, but of course they use even better stuff for dinner…it’s your call!

    sugarednspiced

    26 May 12 at 8:56 AM

  9. Awesome photos. I have dinner reservations for tomorrow night. I will let you know how it is. We tried to do a lunch but you’re right — booked until Sunday!

    Felix Wang

    30 May 12 at 6:36 PM

  10. Outstanding culinary experience! Hope to be back during my travels next year. Thank you Nomura-son and team!

    Mike

    14 Jun 12 at 12:04 PM

  11. Hello! Have been following your blog for a while now. :) Nomura sushi looks amazing and I am hoping to score a seat when I visit Taipei in October.
    I wanted to just quickly check with you please if you know whether they offer the same lunch set on Saturday too?

    hs

    15 Jul 12 at 7:19 PM

  12. Hi hs, thanks for following my blog :) I’m pretty sure they have the same lunch set on Saturday, but you might want to call ahead just to make sure (you need to call to make a reservation anyway). Hope you enjoy!

    sugarednspiced

    17 Jul 12 at 8:56 AM

  13. [...] Via: sugarednspiced.com [...]

  14. How come this one is closed?
    It looks so good!
    Do you know any other similar sushi place in Taipei?
    Would you please recommend one to me?
    Merci beaucoup!

    Derek

    3 Apr 14 at 7:23 AM

  15. Hello Madame.
    The food looks delicious! How come it has closed?
    Do you know any other similar place in Taipei?
    Would you kindly advise one / two to me?
    Merci beaucoup!

    Derek

    3 Apr 14 at 7:24 AM

  16. Hi Derek, I haven’t been in Taipei for almost 2 years and am not up to date with the current dining scene. It’s best for you to check other websites :)

    sugarednspiced

    7 Apr 14 at 9:15 AM

  17. Nomura has re opened in a new tpe location earlier this year. His assistant shawn opened his own japanese restaurant, after the original Nomura closed. Shawn’s restaurant is around the same price as Nomura and very similar in set up and presentation, however, it doesn’t taste as good and I wasn’t that impressed. I have not been to the new nomura, because I don’t live in Taipei anymore. But I’m sure that his new restaurant will maintain the same quality and standards as before.

    alex

    1 Aug 14 at 10:13 AM

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