30 Apr Kurumaya
It’s no secret that sushi is one of my favourite foods. More often than not it’s my takeaway meal of choice, particularly in warm weather when the last thing you want is a hot meal! In our recent mini heatwave I was on a lunch hunt near St Giles Cripplegate and came across Kurumaya.
There are two versions of Kurumaya – a large basement restaurant in St Paul’s and its little sister which is where I ended up, stationed moments from Barbican tube. This location is ideal for take out as there are only three or four tables for dining in. I managed to grab a seat as it was a relatively late lunch for me at 2.30pm, usually I’m hungry by 12!
Prices here are very reasonable, with a salmon don to go at £7.50. By the time I’d arrived a lot of the boxes had been sold already, but there were a few sushi and sashimi ones left as well as some hot meals in the end counter.
My order of the day was chirashi don – a selection of sashimi fish and seafood over a bed of rice. Given the fact that I was the only customer and most of the staff seemed to be relaxing and had nothing to do, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality and number of different ingredients included in the dish. These included (prepare for a lengthy list!) two pieces each of crab sticks, squid, octopus, salmon, salmon roe, yellowtail, egg roll, lean tuna, fatty tuna, mackerel, a prawn and the ubiquitous pickled ginger and daikon. Heaven! ? Underneath rested well cooked sushi rice seasoned with thin seaweed strips.
Having two types of tuna was a real bonus. Fatty tuna is such a treat, with its soft mouth feel it almost melts, teeth not required! The squid and octopus had proper savoury flavour, showing good quality, not just bland texture. I have a soft spot for oily fish, fuelled by the fact that we can get fantastic quality salmon in the UK. The salmon roe adds that fun pop in the mouth as well as seasoning the dish. The chef had taken that into account when cooking the rice as the balance of saltiness was just right overall.
All that fish for £12.50 is a brilliant deal. It was made fresh to order, I could see the chef making it at the little sushi bar area which whetted my appetite even more! Kurumaya is a great option for when you want to stretch your legs further than the Barbican’s Canteen, but isn’t too far away to walk either. I’m intrigued to try the St Paul’s restaurant, perhaps in a longer dinner break, or for those rare days when you’re not in the first half of the concert – unlikely to happen to us violinists!
If you’ve tried either of these do let me know, I’d love to hear from you! See you next Munchtime!
Total Receipt: £12.50
1 x Chirashi don
Rating: 9/10 Serving sushi for daaays