Sunday, June 21, 2009

Birthday Bonanza at O Ya Boston

By: Finance Foodie

This past Saturday, I had my two-week belated birthday dinner at O Ya, the Japanese restaurant located in Boston’s Leather District. I had already heard the rave reviews about the wonderful and innovative the dishes at this place, so I was uber excited to actually see/ taste the food for myself. A recap of the night as follows:

Arrive at O Ya, 10 minutes early for our 6pm reservation. Decide to wander around the neighborhood for bit. Stop by the bookstore nearby hoping to catch up on the latest gossip from . No luck, but the rainbow flag displayed prominently outside the door should have tipped me off that this wasn’t your local Borders.

5:55pm: Walk inside the restaurant. Notice that O Ya is really tiny and seats
about 30 people max. Also, the place was already half full. Bostonians eat really early compared to New Yorkers!

6:00pm: We sit at the “chef’s table”, so we get to watch the sushi chefs prepare each dish. How entertaining! Also, noticed I am completely overdressed in pearls
and heels compared to the rest of the patrons. Was told later that O Ya’s dress code is “come as you are”. So that explains all the jeans and basketball shorts (!) I saw.

6:30pm: The plates at O Ya are served tapas style, which means small plates at entrée prices. First dish of sushi is out: salmon with unfiltered wheat soy moromi and yuzu. Very flavorful but nothing too special.

6:31pm: I noticed that O Ya does not have soy sauce for the sushi. I wonder if they would be offended if I asked for it.

6:35pm: Diver Scallops sashimi. The scallops were very tender and not chew
y at all. The olive oil foam and sprinkle of meyer lemon added excellent flavor to otherwise bland scallops.

6:55pm: Fried Kumamoto Oysters with squid ink bubbles. I loved the fried oysters, which tasted freshly fried, but the wasabi mayonnaise that “glued” the dish together was not my cup of tea.

7:00pm: House Smoked Duck Tataki drizzled in foie gras sauce. Richest dish of the night. Duck was a bit fatty and chewy, but the foie gras sauce was just heavenly. By now I realized each dish was already so complexly flavored, that soy sauce would just completely ruin everything. Also realized that O Ya is not your average sushi joint that serves California Rolls with a side of Shirmp Tempura.

7:35pm: Grilled Chanterelle and Shitake Mushrooms with sesame froth and homemade soy. Although the picture does this plate no justice, this was the best dish of the night. The mushrooms were extremely meaty and exotic tasting. Although the sesame foam looks like (unappetizing) soap bubbles, it actually provides a nice nutty seasoning to the dish as well as an interesting texture to the tongue.

7:45pm: Peruvian Style Toro Tataki. This is a very interesting dish due the fusion of latin and asian flavors. I really liked the aji panca sauce, whose flavor I can only describe as “mellowed BBQ sauce”. This dish is followed shortly by the Kin Medai (a type of red snapper) served with white soy ginger and lemon oil. The Kin Medai was light, refreshing, and airy, and served as a good contrast to the heavier Toro. Both dishes were excellent.

8:00pm: The last two dishes of the night: the Wild Bluefin Tuna Tataki (t) and the Soy Marinated Salmon (b). I wasn’t a big fan of the Tuna, as the pickled onion that came on top of the fish was a too sour for my tastes. The Salmon was very tasty and hearty – and great way to close out the meal.Although the portions were small, I was surprisingly satisfied after the meal (like Per Se, they space out the service and many of the dishes were rather rich). I do want to mention that this is probably one of the priciest restaurants in Boston (a small plate ranges from $12-34), so unless you are completely unaffected by the current recession, I would defiantly suggest O Ya as a special occasion place. All and all, a great meal with great company and a lovely way to celebrate a birthday – however belated it may be!

O Ya
9 East St.
Boston, MA 02122

O Ya on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Richard Auffrey said...

Your meal definitely sounds quite enticing. I will be going to O Ya for my birthday next month so I am very much looking forward it.

Did you have any Sake to drink?

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