New & Noted: Restaurant Reviews


What: Osaka-style Japanese fare

Where: Plaza 66, Shop 501, 1266 Nanjing Xi Lu. Tel: 6288 2788

Why: Fresh seafood, delicate plating and reasonable prices

Tsurunomai, an Osaka style eatery, has been quietly dealing out quality and quantity in Plaza 66’s upscale food court for the past six months. Since the recent tragedies in Japan, the chef has looked elsewhere for his seafood, casting his net far and wide. Oysters from the US, yellowtail from Spain, conch from Dalian, sweet shrimp from Canada, salmon from Norway – there’s no region he’ll refuse. The assorted sashimi platter (RMB 388) hosts all of these international delegates, imported thrice a week to ensure they are fresh.

A short seasonal menu changes monthly with whatever’s fresh, but its merely an insert into the larger picture; the full-time menu covers the complete spectrum of traditional Japanese dishes, from shabu shabu to tonkatsu. The chef also reaches across the Pacific for inspiration in his sushi collection. The spicy salmon roll feels more like the lovechild of a California roll and spicy tuna – only without the cream cheese and sub in salmon. There’s also a beef roll, but the rice doesn’t do the meat any favours. Opt for the Australian teriyaki steak (RMB 98) instead and you won’t be disappointed. Before you leave, make sure to sample the grilled eel. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a fluffier unagi in town.

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