Nodoguro Princess Mononoke Sousaku

I’ve written about Nodoguro multiple times, so instead of repeating myself explaining Nodoguro I’m going to just jump straight to the recap of the courses on my visit for the Nodoguro Princess Mononoke Sousaku themed dinner.
Nodoguro Princess Mononoke Sousaku place setting Nodoguro Princess Mononoke Sousaku place setting

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Signature

Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara

If you were fortunate enough to snag a ticket online for one of the Nodoguro Sousaku Dinners in July or September you will probably be experiencing this “Trip to Nara” theme. Nara is a prefecture and also the name of the capital city of the prefecture Nara, which is also famous for being the capital of Japan during the 8th century, making it Japan’s oldest capital city, before the capital was moved to Kyoto. It is also famous for its sika deer that roam Nara Park and which many visitors buy senbai (they even have special deer crackers) to feed these deer that were once considered sacred.
Deer flirting for food at the Grand Canyon Deer Farm & Petting Zoo Deer flirting for food at the Grand Canyon Deer Farm & Petting Zoo

Fortunately at the Nodoguro Sousaku dinner there are no deer there harassing you for a bite of any of your 11 tasting courses, although the presence of deer is still in the atmosphere.
Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016

Since my last visit for Supa Hard Core, the official seats they ordered have finally come in! I love how comfortable they are, and don’t miss the purse hooks under the counter ladies!
Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016

The decor for now has nods to Nara’s wealth of cultural history and the influence of Chinese elements at that time to fit the theme.
Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016

Gold edged paper lanterns offer a look at the additional drinks you can purchase by the glass or as a flight to accompany your dinner. I always get the sake flight. In addition, the lanterns at each setting offer guests an opportunity to write their own haiku.
Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016 Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner, themed Trip to Nara in July 2016

After being greeted at the door, guests are directed to the lounge where you can order a drink and relax until dinner service, giving you a chance to also mingle with other guests of assemble your dining party. This includes getting a chance to take a look at the Nodoguro book and also the Questlove’s book on food, Somethingtofoodabout that also features Nodoguro.

Here are the 11 courses I enjoyed – the course may be tweaked slightly to fit what is fresh.

  1. Tomato in Dashi. Tomato is grown and found in Nara. At leat that’s what Elena told Ryan, and Ryan told me… whatever, I am not going to turn down tomato and mozzarella in dashi. The little bit of saltiness and tomato sweetness with creamy Italian mozzarella is all good with me.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Tomato in Dashi Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Tomato in Dashi
  2. Trout with Shottsuru. Shottsuru is a very funky intense fish sauce though Ryan mellowed it down a bit so it isn’t so pungent so as to overwhelm the dish.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Trout with Shottsuru
  3. Yuan Style Lingcod
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Yuan Style Lingcod Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Yuan Style Lingcod
  4. Peach, Chanterelle, and Walnut. I thought this was one of my favorite dishes with the sweet peach, nutty and earthy mushrooms and walnut, and the creaminess from the tofu you see.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Peach, Chanterelle, and Walnut
  5. Dengaku Eggplant. Another favorite dish for me for the night with the light non-greasy crispness of the flash fried outside and the creaminess of the inside.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Dengaku Eggplant Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Dengaku Eggplant
  6. Salmon, Persimmon Leaf, and Corn. The salmon here is marinated in sake and then soaked on cherry wood, and the use of a leaf to wrap the sushi and rice is a way workers in the forest would “wrap” their lunch to go as a bento of sorts and persimmon trees are plentiful in Nara.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Salmon, Persimmon Leaf, and Corn Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Salmon, Persimmon Leaf, and Corn
  7. Duck Sukiyaki. I am always a fan of duck and of a yolk sauce.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Duck Sukiyaki
  8. Summer Vegetable Sunomono, aka pickled dish.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Summer Vegetable Sunomono
  9. Chagayu with Crab and Aburage. Aburage here is the fried tofu, which is cut up and fried crispy almost like vegetarian version of chicharrones. This dish is served with a tea that is poured to make the rice porridge, which is what chagayu means and is a popular healthy and comforting dish specialty in Nara.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Chagayu with Crab and Aburage Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Chagayu with Crab and Aburage Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Chagayu with Crab and Aburage Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Chagayu with Crab and Aburage
  10. Tamago
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Tamago
  11. Togashi with Medicinal Milk. Don’t let the medicinal milk scare you – it’s just coconut cream, and a nod to how coconut is rare and considered healthy and medicinal (and um delicious!). It’s my second favorite dessert that I’ve ever gotten from Nodoguro dinners because this is so unique.
    Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Togashi with Medicinal Milk Nodoguro Sousaku Dinner: Trip to Nara, Togashi with Medicinal Milk

Which of these courses intrigues you? Have you heard of Nara and the Nara deer, or have you fed deer before?

Than you to Ryan, Elena, and everyone as always for the wonderful diner and hospitality!
Elena showing some guests some of the Questlove book that Nodoguro is featured in Ryan slicing up the Tamago Staff of Nodoguro

You can see a listing of all my previous Nodoguro experiences here to see more!

Signature

Nodoguro SupaHardcore

I’ve written about Nodoguro pretty often, but this was my first time experience their dinner called Nodoguro SupaHardcore. This is also my first, but definitely just the beginning, of experiencing a dinner at their new location at the old Genoa restaurant space at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches. The back lounge area will eventually be also open for more service which is still to be determined as they get into the groove of their new space and service during these first few weeks.
Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches Nodoguro has moved to a new location at 2832 SE Belmont. The new location is a blend of minimalist Japanese aesthetic with Western modern touches

The main attraction is still the chef counter seating which now has a little bit more room for each guest to comfortably claim versus the tighter seating arrangement at the bar at the old space. Meanwhile, the plating now occurs at a large rolling counter stand in the middle so that everyone can see the magic, but now they have a bit more depth in working space.
Ryan Roadhouse welcomes everyone to Nodoguro SupaHardCore Dinner May 29, 2016

So what is this new SupaHardCore dinner format? Well, Nodoguro first started out with they calling the Sousaku Tasting menu, which offers a new theme every 6 – 8 weeks or so that inspires an 11 course Japanese meal – sort of a “kaiseki without the rules”. Some of my favorite examples of these types of meals vary from the smart Haruki Murakami themed or the  Totoro themed to now the famous Twin Peaks theme or more recently for me, the Harajuku Theme. Currently, Salvador Dali is the theme,  and as of today some July Sousaku dinners are still available!
Ryan Roadhouse plating a course at Nodoguro SupaHardCore Dinner May 29, 2016 Chef Ryan Roadhouse plating a course of SupHardCore on May 29 2016 at Nodoguro while to the left is Mark Wooten and right Elena Roadhouse, his right and left hand peoples making Nodoguro happen so smoothly

Then, Nodoguro started offering essentially a sushi experience, featuring 19 courses of sushi and sashimi with seafood from Japan’s Tsukiji and the Fukuoka fish market in a dinner experience they called Hardcore Sushi (I last recapped one when I attended one this past January). Now, SupaHardcore takes the Hardcore Sushi up another level by presenting a 20 course tasting menu that includes the sushi experience of Hardcore, but also including composed courses like from the sousaku dinners, plus also featuring A5 Wagyu and Ossetra caviar.

Elena Roadhouse brought out the certified Wagyu for us to admire/take photos of raw, and then Mark Wooten brought it out after it had been grilled over charcoal.
Elena shows the A5 Wagyu from Japan at SupaHardCore Mark Wooten models the certified A5 Wagyu from Japan after it's been grilled Mark Wooten models the certified A5 Wagyu from Japan after it's been grilled

I was out of the country for their first offering, and when they decided to open their new space I immediately bee-lined to get a ticket (you make reservations online at their website – follow them on social media to know when the tickets go on sale, many will sell out quickly, some in minutes!) for SupaHardcore. Here’s a look at my dinner and what it could be like for you (menus are finalized the night before based on the freshest seasonal ingredients so changes). You can choose wine by the glass, or pairings, or sake instead to go with your dinner as well.

One

Sparkling Wine welcome. Sorry, no photo as I was chatting away and taking photos of the space!

Two

Tofu with jam, uni (sea urchin), wasabi, dashi. This was so silky smooth and rich, and I always love seeing tofu being used like this where it almost feels decadent… but it’s tofu!
Tofu with jam, uni, wasabi, dashi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Three

Flounder sashimi. I like the presentation, though honestly I’m not personally a huge fan of putting it on ice if it gets too cold.

Four

Sake steamed abalone and abalone liver puree with kelp – it was poached in sake, then pureed with kelp and steamed
Sake steamed abalone and an abalone liver puree with kelp - it was poached in sake, then pureed with kelp and steamed - at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Five

This course was the most beautiful to me in it’s little set tray that included (counterclockwise) Oyster with citrus; Prawn Roll with shiso and avocado; Bone crackers with horse mackerel that are dried, deep fried and finished with curry salt; Fava bean salad with tofu; Then our first style of the A5 Wagyu, here sashimi style with uni and Ossetra caviar. Five little plates for the fifth course! Everyone was oohing and ahhing as these platters were put in front of them.
Course 5 included 5 little bites that were (counterclockwise) Oyster with citrus; Prawn Roll with shiso and avocado; Bone crackers with horse mackerel that are dried, deep fried and finished with curry salt; Fava bean salad with tofu; The A5 Wagyu with sea urchin and caviar - at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Oyster with citrus at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Prawn Roll with shiso and avocado at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Bone crackers with horse mackerel that are dried, deep fried and finished with curry salt; Fava bean salad with tofu at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Tartare or raw sashimi style A5 Wagyu with sea urchin and Ossetra caviar at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Six

Grilled Japanese Eggplant with dashi and Cold Smoked Black Cod. This was one of my favorite tastes of the night as I love the flavors of that charcoal grilled eggplant whenever it appears at Nodoguro.
Grilled Japanese Eggplant with dashi and Cold Smoked Black Cod at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Seven

Sashimi course that includes Amberjack, Giant Clam, and Sea Scallop with aged soy and fresh wasabi. I love the texture of Giant Clam.
Sashimi course that includes Amberjack, Giant Clam, and Sea Scallop with aged soy and fresh wasabi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Sashimi course that includes Amberjack, Giant Clam, and Sea Scallop with aged soy and fresh wasabi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Eight

Ryan Roadhouse begins plating the grilled A5 Wagyu steak at SupaHardcore Ryan Roadhouse slices the certified A5 Wagyu from Japan after it's been grilled with assist from Mark Wooten
Second style of preparation of A5 Wagyu, grilled over charcoal with crushed daikon, fermented yuzu skin, peppers, and ginger blossom
Second style of preparation of A5 Wagyu, grilled over charcoal with crushed daikon, fermented yuzu skin, peppers, and ginger blossom at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Nine

Shirako (meaning white children… it can be any kind of fish but here it’s sea bream sperm sac) and Onsen Egg in Dashi. So clever, having both types of “eggs” here ha ha… clearly SupaHardCore is taking it up a level on eating adventures for everyone. But, having this way is perfect – you may not think to ever order or try it, but when it’s presented to you as part of these courses, why not go ahead and try it – and be surprised that it’s not at all what you thought.
Shirako (meaning white children... it can be any kind of fish but here it's sea bream sperm sac) and Onsen Egg in Dashi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Ten

The third way we enjoyed the A5 Wagyu, here Sukiyaki style with sake, sugar and soy and then served with a yolk sauce and chrysanthemum flower. I could have eaten like 4 more plates of these.
The third way we enjoyed the A5 Wagyu, here Suikiyaki style with sake, sugar and soy and then with a yolk sauce and chrysanthemum flower at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Eleven

New Zealand Snapper with ponzu sushi
New Zealand Snapper with ponzu sushi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Twelve

Hokkaido Scallop with yuzu juice sushi. Hokkaido is famous for their cold waters that are also full of a lot of nutritious plankton (not for us – for the sea life here…) and so the scallops from here are sweeter and as you can see quite plump!
Hokkaido Scallop with yuzu juice sushi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Thirteen

Aji sushi (Japanese horse mackerel) with shiso and aged soy
Aji sushi (Japanese horse mackerel) with shiso adn aged soy at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Fourteen

Uni sushi (sea urchin) from Hokkaido
Uni sushi (sea urchin) at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Fifteen

Ikura (salmon caviar) with soy and yuzu over rice
Ikura (salmon caviar) with soy and yuzu over rice at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Sixteen

Salmon sushi with shiso, fresh ginger, sesame
Salmon with shiso, freh ginger, sesame at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016 Salmon with shiso, freh ginger, sesame at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Seventeen

Kojada sushi
Kojada sushi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Eighteen

Anago sea eel sushi
Anago sea eel sushi at Nodoguro SupaHardCore May 29, 2016

Nineteen

Crab Hand Roll with dry curry seasoning and kewpie. You may be surprised that this simple roll was also one of my favorite tastes of the evening. The homemade curry mix that Ryan made was light but with every bite it tasted boldly of curry just like a big plate of curry rice would. I couldn’t believe how much full Japanese curry punch each little bite gave me.
"Crab

Twenty

Miso Soup, served in a mug. I totally forgot to take a photo of this. I love taking photos to help remember and look back on the meal, but sometimes I just love the socializing with others and put my camera down and don’t remember to get the picture

Twenty One

Buckwheat Tea – since I was already heated up from the miso soup it took me a while and a lot of chatting before I drank my tea and I don’t have a photo either.

Thank you for a wonderful dinner Nodoguro! I, and the whole room I think, got blissfully silent as we enjoyed each of our wagyu courses which were a highlight of the entire dinner. But, the wagyu alone wasn’t the only star – several other courses were just as delicious in a different way, a perfect demonstration with how Nodoguro elevates flavors from everything and anything.

This is why Nodoguro is among the best meals and experiences you can have in Portland – and why I keep obviously coming back like an addict. I would definitely do SupaHardCore again.

To make a reservation, follow Nodoguro on social media Ryan Roadhouse on Twitter and get on their newsletter to hear when tickets are going to be released, and be prepared to look at dates/buy your tickets right at when they are released as some dinners may sell out in less then 15 minutes (particularly the SupaHardcore and Hardcore, “which are offered less frequently). You can also contact them directly to book the entire room for instance for your party.

Would you have tried all these courses? Have you had Wagyu before (even if it’s from the US instead of Japan)?

Signature

Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

This Throwback Thursday post is a recap of Yurukyara Grand Prix. This is a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner from last year, in their previous space next to Pastaworks but I realized I had never posted this. This may be me, thinking about all the wonderful themes that have inspired Nodoguro dinners that I have been able to enjoy, and reading back on them and looking at the photos reminiscing. I am also looking forward, wondering what it will be like in the new space at Genoa they have now leased – I’ll let you know if I can hopefully get into a June or July Sousaki dinner. You can see all my other Nodoguro recaps of my dinner experiences from before the new space here. This weekend, I will be going to the new space for the first time, to attend SupaHardcore.
Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016 Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016 Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

In Japan, they promote it seems anything and everything – any company, sometimes a very specific product, even public transit or a mountain park or historical castle or other part of local government (!) with mascots. Japan’s Yurukyara Grand Prix is a special annual event where mascots are essentially in a popularity contest based on the public vote – and apparently for 2015 had 1727 mascots competing! The fact there are so many has generated controversy and a push to cut back recently, per the The Japan Times.
Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Nodoguro at their old space they rented next to Pastaworks before they moved to the Genoa space in 2016, here decorated for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

I think my favorite thing with this Yurukyara Grand Prix theme is how it inspired so many people to draw their own mascots.
Mascots contributed by guests for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Mascots contributed by guests for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Mascots contributed by guests for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner Mascots contributed by guests for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

Here’s a look at the courses:
Menu for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

As always you can choose to add beverage pairing to your meal, which can include sake or wine (or do both!)
Sake or wine beverage pairings for the Menu for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

Salted Salmon with aged shoyu and water pepper
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner. Course 1 Salted Salmon with aged shoyu and water pepper Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner. Course 1 Salted Salmon with aged shoyu and water pepper
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner. Course 1 Salted Salmon with aged shoyu and water pepper Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner. Course 1 Salted Salmon with aged shoyu and water pepper

Amberjack, miso, and ginger being plated by Caesar version of Mark Wooten
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 2 Amberjack, miso, and ginger being plated by Mark Wooten Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 2 Amberjack, miso, and ginger

Oyster with crushed daikon and strawberry This dish is an example of why I come here – because where else can I go to get that combo together of flavors and textures?
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 3 Oyster with crushed daikon and strawberry Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 3 Oyster with crushed daikon and strawberry

Buckwheat, crab, and spruce. Same comment as above. This is why Nodoguro is like no one else. This is why Nodoguro has regulars that keep coming back as they change it up every theme.
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 4 Buckwheat, crab, and spruce Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 4 Buckwheat, crab, and spruce

Team Mark Wooten and Ryan Roadhouse plating away like best bros.

Smoked Burdock Salad with onion and peppers
"Yurukyara

Another awesome aspect of Nodoguro is being able to ask all the questions you want with Chef Ryan and he is so casually well knowledged in explaining every ingredient and technique and context of culture or inspiration how it connects to the theme, the humble genius that he is.
'Another

Rice bran cured mackerel with citrus and turnip

Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 6 Rice bran cured mackerel with citrus and turnip

Roasted pork and cabbage Okonomiyaki. I admit the courses like the previous one and this one tend to be my favorite in the course progression.
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 7 Roasted pork and cabbage Okonomiyaki Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 7 Roasted pork and cabbage Okonomiyaki

Sasanishki rice with eel and tea. It aws refreshing for a change to get a light touch of sauce instead of the usual stronger sweeter unagi sauce you typically get with Japanese eel dishes.
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 8 Sasanishki rice with eel and tea

Course 9 is always the Omelette, which is always a mixed (but not sobering, ha ha…) moment as I realize we are now in the falling action part of the meal story heading to dessert and tea and then I have to go home. That omelette is always perfect.
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 9 Omelette

Dessert Sweet potato and Red Bean
Yurukyara Grand Prix at Nodoguro, a Japanese mascot themed dinner Course 10 Sweet potato and Red Bean

I got involved with conversations and apparently forgot to photograph the last course of tea, oops!

What do you think you would have drawn for your mascot?
Mascot contributed by guests for Yurukyara Grand Prix, a Nodoguro Mascot Dinner

Signature

Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase

A photo recap of my first Nodoguro dinner for 2016 – they popped up in the back room of Renata on January 31 as they are transitioning into their space from where they were last year by Pastaworks to now sharing a space with Peter Cho as reported in Eater until they find a new home.
Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016

This night was Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase where from 7 to 10ish I enjoyed a menu that included special orders from Tsukiji and Fukuoka Municipal, California Abalone, wild aji from Nagasaki, Kohada from Kumamoto, Baby white shrimp, Wild Scallop from Miyagi, and Masaba from Toyama. 

Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016

Here’s a look at what could appear before you at one of these amazing dinners – pay attention to when they list as they sell out quickly from the Nodoguro website as soon as tickets go on sale. This is the best sushi and sashimi experience in Portland.

  1. Starter of oysters
    Oysters to start the 19 course dinner of Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  2. Scallop Somen with quail egg and Ikura (salmon eggs). Somen is noodles so in this case he sliced the Scallop into Noodle like pieces. I’m not afraid to admit I slurped every last drop from the dish.
    Scallop Somen with quail egg and Ikura, Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016Scallop Somen with quail egg and Ikura, Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  3. New Zealand Sea Bream: one thing I love about sashimi are noticing these little details about the beauty of the fish
    New Zealand Sea Bream fro Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 New Zealand Sea Bream from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  4. Aji, a Japanese Horse Mackerel with Sesame, Persimmons and Buckwheat
    Aji, a Japanese Horse Mackerel with Sesame, Persimmons and Buckwheat from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Aji, a Japanese Horse Mackerel with Sesame, Persimmons and Buckwheat from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  5. Sake steamed abalone with sea urchin (uni)
    Sake steamed abalone with sea urchin at Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Sake steamed abalone with sea urchin at Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  6. Fresh snow crab with rice, uni and mayo. I always love presentations in the shell
    Fresh snow crab with rice, uni and mayo from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Fresh snow crab with rice, uni and mayo from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  7. Tai with yuzu and thyme
    Tai from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Tai from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  8. Aji
    Aji from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Aji from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  9. There was a Wild Scallop here that I forgot to photograph I think, but I wrote the note “Hokkaido Scallop w aged soy and yuzu juice”
  10. Baby White Shrimp
    Baby White Shrimp from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  11. Geoduck giant clam from Washington, with a touch of yuzu and Jacobsen Sea Salt
    Geoduck giant clam from Washington, with a touch of yuzu and Jacobsen Sea Salt at Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  12. Octopus
    Octopus from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Octopus Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  13. Uni and Crab
    Uni ad Crab Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  14. Ikura on rice
    Ikura on rice at Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  15. Shimmery Kohada
    Kohada from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Kohada at Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  16. Handroll
    Handroll from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Handroll from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  17. Masaba. Can you tell I thought this was beautiful?
    Masaba from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Masaba from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Masaba from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Masaba from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  18. Unagi
    Unagi from Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016
  19. The last course is by your request –  some went for Oysters, I prefer ending with sashimi and Ryan created this lovely medley
    Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016 Nodoguro Hardcore Sushi Omakase 1/31/2016

It might be a little time before my next Nodoguro theme dinner (you can see other Nodoguro themed dinner recaps here) since my next big dinners are the Chef’s Week PDX big 30 course West Coast 2016 dinner at Departure, of which Ryan Roadhouse is one of the 30 chefs each contributing a course to a marathon dinner.

Next week is also Dumpling Week 2016, and I am going to my first Meadowlark supper club dinner. Then it might be time for a little healthy eating to clean my system out before Portland Dining Month in March.

What are you looking forward to eating in February? Do you eat sushi/sashimi, and have a favorite sushi or sashimi?

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