Unagi (freshwater eel) is one Japanese cuisine I haven’t really explored during my culinary expeditions around Tokyo. I’ve never been a big fan of Unagi dishes but for the sake of variety for this blog I decided to give Nodaiwa a try. After all, it is a one michelin star restaurant.
The tiny traditional Japanese building that houses Nodaiwa is squished between higher more modern buildings in the HigashiAzabu area. I later learned that it is a timber mountain farmhouse transplanted smack into the middle of Tokyo. I loved the facade, so cute.
Graceful ladies dressed in lovely kimonos greeted us as we entered. The interior is exactly as I envisioned it. Lots of dark wood with vintage Japanese touches all over. There is a restaurant downstairs with about 6 tables but we were escorted to the tatami room on the second floor. If you can’t stand sitting on the floor for over an hour then it is probably a good idea to ask for a table downstairs. I decided to endure the tatami room.
Nodaiwa is known for serving only eels caught in the wild and they had a few options of lunch menus starting from about 4500 yen all the way to 15,750 yen. I did not feel like eating too much for lunch and opted for the lightest menu. This is what I had :
As appetizer, some unagi jelly :
Followed by some Shirayaki which seems to be the house speciality. Shirayaki is eel that is lightly steamed and grilled. It is eaten either with salt, wasabi or a little shoyu. Even without any extra seasoning the flavor was unbeatable. I also liked it with the wasabi.
As a main course we were served with some unaju which is eel fillet broiled until golden brown and served over rice.
The unaju is served with some radish, pickles and a soup with eel liver in side.
Dessert was one of my most favorite fruit…kaki or persimmon.
Even if I claimed myself not to be a unagi cuisine fan, I have to say I had a very good lunch and will definitely recommend this restaurant to others.
Price : $$-$$$
NODAIWA. • 1-5-4 Higashi-Azabu, Minato-ku, +81 3 3583 7852, nodaiwa.com,