I still remember the moment when sushi rolls turned into an obsession, taking over the world, soul by soul, appearing on everyone’s menu including places one would never imagine serving raw fish. Bakeries, bars, supermarkets and food trucks decided to dedicate their specials to green wasabi paste and weird tiny bites which in fairness combined a balanced dietary trio of carbs, protein and fibre. Luckily a few years later the avocado cappuccino went mainstream, killing all competition and letting the sushi craze fade away. Quality eventually overcame hype.
As a result, a number of incredible contemporary Japanese restaurants kicked in, fighting for a spot in the foodie’s and businessmen’s heart. No one can count the exact number of great deals signed over a delicious serving of smoky eel, resting on a carefully crafted cube of steamed rice, beside a miniature carafe of ice-cold sake (or my favourite, steamy warm).
Sushi, being an obsession for so many folks out there and especially fancy girls, has also proven that Japanese cuisine is so much more than just rolls. In fact the more one discovers the traditional side of infamous Japanese dining the more delicious it gets. Ramusake restaurant at the Double Tree by Hilton in JBR is a perfect example. I was very excited to barge my way into Ramusake on their popular Ladies Nights and that experience led to my personal obsession with the restaurant.
First of all, Ramusake is in style. It’s the place to be and a place to watch the crowd. Always being over booked on Wednesday nights they are also being stormed by the most beautiful girls from the Dubai and further. No matter how Insta famous you get (true story) there is no way you can reserve a table unless you call far in advance. My attempts to get a table for four on short notice failed miserably. On a brighter note, there are always a few spots left for the Friday brunch which, in my opinion, is the best way to discover the mystery of Ramusake’s success.
My usual Friday brunch strategy is to arrive early. The next move is to convince your server you are the most mega super famous person on Instagram to score an extra cocktail and some fantastic bar magic footage. They are easy to convince and it always works for me 🙂 Once your arrival drink is sorted, look through the pre-set menu and agree to everything they offer. The food at Ramusake is so damn good.
The moment the salted edamame beans appear at your table, start ordering and tasting sake. Nothing compliments Japanese cuisine better than this magical beverage, neither jasmine green tea nor Asahi. Sake, based on processed fermented rice, delivers a little kick of happiness with the every sip as well as a balanced taste that works in a harmony with any dish. No matter what you are sampling – a dessert, sashimi or chicken skewers, sake will deliver an accompanying flavour turning a meal into a feast.
While brunching at Ramusake it’s easy to sneak a peek at the chefs putting together rolls, main dishes and cooking their way through the experience. The concept of an open kitchen is indeed my favourite way of dining. I love to watch men cook. There is something truly magical when ingredients imported from all over the world appear in the form of something you never knew existed.