From September 2nd to September 9th, Latitude is celebrating Tokyo Week, and tailoring their dinner buffets that’ll make the Asian food junkie in me click her heels with joy. For just AED 240 per person, one can enjoy a buffet of very authentic Japanese food.
I was invited to the media preview for said Tokyo Week, and being that this was only an indication of what one can expect during the actual Tokyo Week, I can’t wait to go back for the full spread!
We were welcomed by ladies in Kimonos, who offered us warm towelettes. Now that’s my kind of evening.
Since I’m such a lover of tea, I began my round of the stations yesterday by getting schooled in the art of making Matcha tea. I was absolutely smitten by the Bamboo Brush used to mix the Matcha powder with water. Jumeirah Beach Hotel, if you are reading this, please send me one of those Bamboo Brushes? Kthxbye.
Some of the hor dourves we relished yesterday included but were not limited to:
- Torry Corry Don: This was Tokyo chicken curry, Nishiki Rice and Hamaguri Miso Soup. This had such a hearty, authentic and home cooked feel to it and was true comfort food. (Pictured below)
- Moriawase: Cubes of fish, shrimp and scallop, marinated in Miso, breaded and then fried on stick, this mouthwatering snack belongs in the streets of Osaka! (Pictured below)
- Edamame Fried Prawns: So imagine a prawn dipped in tempura batter and then rolled around in finely chopped Edamame before being deep fried. Hellloooo Osaka! (Pictured below)
- Prawn Ball Tempura: So imagine a prawn tempura, but elevated. This was a ball of prawns, spring onions, and sesame oil. I so regret not having more. (Pictured below)
- Beef Teriyaki: This succulent beef was wrapped around asparagus and served atop Eringi mushrooms, and was sheer brilliance. The taste of truffle oil in this was distinct and this one was M’s favorite item last night. (Pictured below)
- Okonomiyaki: So this was a Japanese savory pancake made with egg and lots of vegetables, especially a lot of cabbage. M felt it was bland and lacking the flavors one normally enjoys in Takayoki, but I enjoyed it. (Pictured below)
- Caramelized Fois Gras and Spinach Rice: The name says it all. This is the first time I had Fois Gras that not only did not make me gag, but I truly savored! Regret not having more of these too. (Pictured below)
- Chutoro Kaiso Salad: This was SO pretty to look at. It was a seared Tuna salad. Sounds pretty harmless right? Sadly, this missed the mark. (Pictured below)
- Smoked Eggplant and Eel: Ok so this took the crown. It was my first time trying Eel and I had to do a little mental chant of “Anthony Bourdain would so eat this, and I must too”. And boy oh boy am I GLAD I tried this. It was so GOOD!!! Smoking it really took it to the next level. This is what kept me up all night with regret. Why did I not just grab the entire tray.Sigh. (Pictured below)
- Dorayaki: Sticky rice and Tofu with Red Bean Paste. (Pictured below)
- Anko Dango: Red Bean Paste sandwiched between two mini pancakes. (Pictured below)
We washed down the above with several virgin Mohitos- it was a summer evening in Dubai, ok, on the Sundeck. (Pictured below)
I kind of wish they had dessert though. I would have loved to have seen some Mochi, some Chocolate flavored Hanjuku Cheese, and perhaps some Matcha Icecream. The savory items are certainly worth going back for, but I really hope there’s more to the dessert in the actual Tokyo week than just red bean paste.
Everything we tried had so much depth and layers of flavors, it was truly a delight. Each station boasted a very different dominant flavor and each of them earned a firm nod of approval followed by eyes rolling to the back of my head.
The view was absolutely spectacular and the company nothing short of sheer delight. (I’m looking at you Being Random Rachel).
Thanks Jumeirah Beach Hotel for having us.
Counting down to September 2nd. Till then I shall sit and write a love song for smoked Eel.