Skip to content


With these name brand restaurants, I hem and haw over what to say, as if
seriousness of mission is ever reflected in my recounting. Whatever.
Morimoto was a spur of the moment birthday dinner choice. All I knew was
that New York City was not the place to be for James's 33rd birthday. Not
after the past few years of fiascos. I randomly made out of town
reservations. Perhaps not the brightest financial move, but hey, what's a
whole week's wages for a meal ($12/hour part time doesn't get you far when
it comes to high end dining)? That's right, the world is this library
clerk's oyster.

We ended up taking the middle ground, trying the $100 omakase (the
others being $80 or $120) and probably ordered a bad wine, the waiter seemed
curt and unimpressed with me. But that could've had more to do with how
every time we go to a restaurant that serves a Willamette Valley wine James
makes a big point of asking how to pronounce it because invariably they'll
say Willa Met as he also incorrectly says it. It's Wil
LAM ette
, the correct way, my way. I'm from the Willamette Valley, for
crying out loud. Anyway, the ruse always alienates staff and pisses me off.

It's definitely a thrill to see the plates coming out, not knowing what
you'll get. The trouble is not having a menu to refer to, and only the
verbal descriptions. I tend to forget subtle ingredients, nuances and feel
self-conscious about scribbling in a notebook like an foodie who needs to be
put in his place. The first course was toro tartare with caviar wasabi and
what they called a Japanese peach (more like a pitted berry), then a palate
cleanser of wasabi-yuzu sorbet with a beignet (not a pillowy New Orleans
goodie, but a miniature, sweet breadstick), third was hamachi with
microgreens and a yuzu vinaigrette, fourth halibut steamed with sake in a
banana leaf, fifth Kobe beef with Japanese potatoes (sweet), and a final
sushi course served on a board (I don't remember the individual varieties,
there were about six in the style I think is called Nigiri-sushi). Dessert
was a long thin strip of yam cake with a postage stamp-size square of lime
gelatin, drizzles of balsamic vinegar and a thimble dollop of ice cream, the
flavor I can't recall.

Morimoto wasn't in the house, but I'm not one of those folks who goes to
celebrity-chef type restaurants looking for snapshots. I do fall for
over-the-top dcor, however. Sure, all that Stephen Starr plastic, glowing,
color-changing, space-age crap is gimmicky. But it works on me.

Morimoto* 723
Chestnut St., Philadelphia, PA

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

You may use basic HTML in your comments. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS