Tokyo: Rainbow Roll Sushi
Restaurants in the homeland aren’t what one might expect. Although soba and udon are daily fare at the thousands of noodle shops spread across Tokyo and nabe (a sort of rice stew made with fish or meat and vegetables) is a common lunch everywhere, specialties like tofu or sushi are more often found at establishments featuring only one or the other – this is the Japanese way. It was Americans who assembled the food groups to make the kind of restaurants most of us know – a commodity not all that common in Tokyo. One welcome visit to the more western version of the formula, Rainbow Roll in the convenient Minato-ku area, made us feel right at home. Rainbow offers seating at a small sushi counter, banquettes, tables, modern tatami spaces or at a long central counter island where eight of us shared most of the menu. A full selection of sashimi, nigari sushi and a variety of delicious rolls that include most of the familiar ones (dragon roll, spider roll, salmon skin hand roll and the namesake rainbow) made for an evening of high end dining on par with the top NY, LA or London best-ofs at about the same price point. Lovely tempura, sweet, creamy tofu and wonderfully flavorful, succulent soft shell crab were all winners. The uni was near perfection served with good sake, a modern, buzzing interior and sesame ice cream for dessert, who could ask for more?