Izanagi-The review

Wednesday, 5.15p.m

Hellossssss,

How are you guys holding up? This Lagos heat wave na die? Even my MIFI bucked under the heat. (see picture below). Chai!!, Lord, please help me to do right by you always so I don’t end up in hell fire! To think  that the dreaded hell fire is nothing compared to this?! Repent ooooo

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I have been to Izanagi a few times but I just realized I had never reviewed their food for you to read. My friend Fola  and I decided  to have late lunch there about a week ago. The decor is quite inviting. The interior is partly painted soft pink and other parts were adorned with beautiful purple floral wallpaper. It had rows of bright turquoise blue seats paired with neatly laid tables. The decor is simple but it was tastefully done. The lighting here just gives it that right ambiance. It’s a cross between an upscale and romantic restaurant.

Izanagi is a Japanese restaurant that serves mainly Japanese staples. From Sushi to Sashimi , Teriyaki , Teppanyaki etc.You are enthralled right by the entrance with a beautiful artsy display of sushi. The precision with which these foods are carved  leaves me in awe every time.True food craftsmanship I would say.

We were shown seats by a waiter who introduced himself and handed us the menus. He informed us the kitchen closed for recess by 3.30 pm so we had just about 15 minutes before they closed. Choi, see better seafood for this menu… I remembered that I had promised I wouldn’t order seafood for this review in my last post. So I didn’t!! Boohoooo.

We ordered  Ultimate Sushi, Seafood Yaki Soba, Teppanyaki Chicken, Veggie Fried Rice, and Lava cake for dessert.

After the orders were taken, the waiter came to apologize that they had run out of  soba noodles but they could substitute the soba noodles for udon noodles. Well,  we would not even know  the difference if it pierced through us. So we obliged him.

The Ultimate Sushi (N1,500 – $7) was the first to be served. The chef didn’t pay attention to the presentation of this dish. Their plating  is usually fab but this was not done right. The rice cubes were crooked and the pickled ginger was just slapped on the plate. You would normally see all sorts of artsy stuff done with the green Baran garnish and wasabi but this was just placed on the plate. There was also no soy sauce or side dip for the sushi abi isn’t that always the accompaniment? Am I being unnecessarily fussy here? The plating aside, it tasted great.The  crumb coated rice was stuffed with shrimp, salmon, crab and tobiko (fish eggs) and a bit of mayonnaise I think. It was served with pickled ginger and wasabi.  I have only had pinkish pickled ginger but this was off white but it still tasted just as nice. I didn’t touch the wasabi as always.

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When the mains were served, I was appalled. First up was my Chicken Teppanyaki (N3900- $18). The food was literarilly scattered on the plate. The chicken was to one side, the veggies another, and the soy sauce to another. This was such a shame. I tasted a cut of the chicken with sesame seeds and it was dry and not properly seasoned. I tried the vegetables and I almost spat it out. I am not being overly dramatic about this but this was the worst I have ever had at Izanagi. The chef wanted me to OD  on soy sauce.It was way too salty. I tried the rice and it was just alright . E be like say dis chef see me for dream. This meal went almost untouched .

iza4iza5The Seafood Udon Noodles (N3,200- $15) looked and tasted much nicer but I knew I couldn’t eat too much of it because when the waiter asked how spicy my friend wanted it to be and she opted for it to be very spicy *double eye roll * .The veggies and seafood were properly seasoned.Even the noodles had the right bite  to it. There was much more veggies in it than seafood though. We came to the conclusion that the chef just couldn’t be bothered with plating because yet again the noodles was just slapped on the plate .Who plates a dish in a premium restaurant and you can see pepper and seasoning flecks on the plates. Please see pictures below. Ishhh.

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The dessert menu is quite different from what we get around town, I would have loved to try the Tempura Fried Ice cream, but my friend was “craving”  The Chocolate Lava Cake.(N1,900-$9). My gulucious mind processed this as molten lava cake, don’t judge me please hahahaha. So when it was served and I saw it was dense chocolate cake and vanilla Ice cream I was kind of disappointed.I thought there was an error but apparently not. It was a warm slice of dense chocolate cake, a scoop of vanilla ice cream with drizzled chocolate syrup. It was really good.The cake  was delicious and it did not have that cheap cocoa taste that’s synonymous with brownies and cakes in this clime. Even the ice cream was rich and creamy.This one hit the spot. No complaints at all.

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When the waiter came to clear the plates, he asked if we enjoyed the meal, we both said ‘No’. We invited him to taste The Chicken Teppanyaki  but he said he couldn’t in the main dinning room but he assured us he would taste it behind closed doors. He came back to apologize that he tasted it and said it wasn’t done right.

Were the meals hurriedly prepared because of the lunch break or what? I wish I had a crystal ball to see what happened in the kitchen that day because the food is usually on point. On this day! It was NOT!

I like the fact that the bills are given in this cute treasure boxes . The waiter apologized again about the teppanyaki and said we didn’t get billed for it. Before nko?

So for 1 portion of sushi, 1 main, and 1 dessert , we paid about N9,000- $41. (Remember we didn’t pay for the Teppanyaki. It should have come to about  N13,000- $60).

I didn’t go to the restroom to assess on this day because I had to leave hurriedly. 🙈

Would I go back? Oh yes (I know that sounds partial but I have had lots of good stuff here).

MY SCORE CARD

Layout / Ambiance / Aesthetics- 8

Quality of food- 5

Value for money- 5

Customer Service- 8.5

IZANAGI JAPANESE CUISINE

19B, Idejo Close ,

Victoria Island

0706 222 222

Thank you for always reading.

DISCLAIMER: These reviews are my opinion of my dining experiences at these restaurants. They are not sponsored by any establishment unless otherwise stated.

 

 

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Sakura- The Review

Monday 5.15 P.M

Hey Beautiful people,

Now that elections are over, we can all go back to our regular routines. Congratulations to the newly elected public officers. Hopefully, we would not have cause to kick your behinds in 4 years time.

In my two years of writing food reviews, it has never taken me this long to write a review . This has taken me almost a month to write . #sayNOtowritingonelineaday. Am I losing interest or my mojo? H-E-L-P!!!!

My review this week is on Sakura Restaurant in Victoria Island. Sakura is a Thai / Japanese and Chinese restaurant. I don’t remember seeing any Chinese staples on the menu though but the menu was quite  extensive with different kinds of Sushi, Sashimi, Teriyaki , Teppanyaki  and their likes.

The  restaurant was quite sizable. It would probably sit about 70 or 80 guests. The interior wasn’t quiite as “grand” as I expected it to be. It also didn’t have that oriental feel synonymous with Asian restaurants. I expected a whole lot more as per the decor.  There isn’t much to write about the decor to be honest. I however loved the fact that you can dine alfresco.

I was handed the menu by this “interesting ” waitress. I ordered a mocktail which was promptly served. I ordered “foreplay on the beach “ or something like that. It was nice. No complaints about it at all, that’s  a first in a very longggg time. Well I described the waitress as interesting because when she came the waft of air around me went sour. She had body odor. I almost died when she raised her arm to point something out on the menu. Arrgghhh. Is it that people don’t know when they smell bad or what? Thankfully she was not the one that brought the drink.

For our starter, we ordered the Naked Spicy volcano (sushi) and Chicken Gyoza (dumplings). For mains, we had the Lobster Teppan, Shrimp Teriyaki, Chicken Teriyaki, garlic& beef fried rice, shrimp fried rice.

My Spicy Volcano Sushi (N2700-$14) was first up. Atop my Meshi (rice) sat a combination of  minced salmon, avocado and cucumber.The rice cube itself had some  julienned crabmeat and cucumber inside it. It was served  with pickled ginger. I don’t fancy wasabi so I requested that it wasn’t served with mine. It was so good that I had eaten it half way before I realized i hadn’t taken a picture!! Hence my picture of a half eaten plate . Yes before you abuse me I am a gulu.

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Next up was the Chicken Gyoza (dumplings 2500- $13).We had the option to either have this steamed or fried but we chose fried. I would say you can liken the fried Gyoza to Samosas. In this particular case the chicken and vegetables filling was  beautifully seasoned and folded into pleated filopastry and fried. It was juicy on the inside crispy on the outside. The best part of this dumpling for me was the sauce it was served it. I am used to eating steamed dumpling with soy sauce but this was served with a different sauce . I asked the waitress what the sauce was called but she didn’t know. It perfectly complemented the Gyoza.

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The first main entrée was the Shrimp Teriyaki(4500-$23). This gave me instant food envy. I looked at it and I was like I shoulda ordered that.This was 2 large teriyaki sauce glazed jumbo shrimp that was grilled and served with cabbage,lemon slices ,tomatoes and cucumbers. It came with the same sauce that was served with the Gyoza. As this wasnt my meal, my tasting was minimal. It tasted even better than it looked. I give it to this chef with the seasoning of his proteins. There were no complaints from anyone as per this dish.

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The Chicken Teriyaki was next, personally I am tired of chicken so when Mrs O ordered chicken teriyaki  , I just rolled my eyes at her. Una no dey tire to dey order the same thing?! Hiannn! To be honest , there was no difference between the Shrimp & Chicken Teriyaki…well except the sesame seeds the chicken was garnished with.They were both marinaded in teriyaki sauce and grilled. It had the same side salad and “that sauce “.   Why use the same dip /dressing for everything? I am of the opinion that proteins should be treated according to how delicate each is.

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I have spoken to my sub conscious not to order seafood when next I go out to review a restaurant... Is something wrong with me? 95% of the time when I go out to eat, I order seafood. Well this was no different,  I ordered the Lobster Teppan( N5900- $30).The plating was quite clever. The cooked lobster meat was neatly arranged under the shell of the lobster so it looked like it was cooked whole. It was served on a bed of sautéed vegetables and thankfully the generic sauce didn’t accompany it. It tasted great but I found it a bit over cooked because it was chewy. The Oliver Twist in me, did bebeto and went a -digging for more lobster meat in the head. There was lobster meat quite alright but it was raw which made me question the cooking method. If you look carefully at the picture you ll notice the raw looking purplish part of the head. Why would anyone plate cooked and uncooked seafood together?  This put a damper on the goodness of the dish .

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We had a side order of garlic and beef fried rice and shrimp fried rice. The rice did not blow me away but it wasn’t bad either. I preferred the garlic and beef fried rice though because it had more flavour.

We didn’t bother with desserts because we super stuffed and also because the  menu didn’t look too interesting, I don’t remember what they had on it. It would be nice to go to a  speciality  restaurant  and they ll have desserts accordingly . Even if it’s ice cream you have for dessert , surely there has to be a certain way it is served. Abi am I asking for too much?

I went to the restroom to do an assessment, whilst it was not unclean but  it was not spotless either. There was water on the floor and it smelled a musky.

As a diner, my advice to this establishment is to school their waiters on the meals they serve.They kept going back to ask another waiter or the chef what the dish was about.  It is imperative to tell them the importance of good hygiene. I don’t want someone leaning over or opening their mouth to describe something and I almost pass out from the  smell. That’s not too much to ask for is it?

Would I go back there?….Yes

We paid (N27,800- $143) for 2 entrees, 3 main dishes, 3 mocktails and a bottle of water

MY SCORE CARD

Layout / Ambiance / Aesthetics- 6.5

Quality of food- 7.5

Value for money- 8

Customer Service- 6.5

SAKURA RESTAURANT

 2A,Saka Jojo street off Idejo street,

Victoria Island

Lagos

090990409363

Thank you for always reading.

DISCLAIMER: These reviews are my opinion of my dining experiences at these restaurants. They are not sponsored by any establishment unless otherwise stated.

 

 

BISTRO 7-THE REVIEW (REVIEW WITH THE SWEEPSTAKES WINNER)

Sunday 9.11 p.m

Salut  des Gourmandes!

Recently, I put up a post of   sweepstakes and some thought I was faffing about. In the name of awuf, some people begged, some threatened, some even bribed me to choose them as the winner  but I had  promised to be fair , and fair I was in my choice! My randomly selected winner was Mr Yemi Okanlawon who was accompanied by his wife , Damilola. Better luck next time folks. We were to review restaurant X but it was being renovated. Quickly, I whipped out my ever growing  list of places to review ( May I never declare bankruptcy because of these reviews oh…Amen). We finally decided on Bistro 7. bistro 7 13 Everyone that has told me about Bistro 7, has said one similar thing- it is easy to miss the location and yes we missed it too! Thankfully, I had saved their telephone number , so I called them and I was given apt directions. Voila! we were there. The first thing that struck me here was  the layout. There was a coffee shop ( The Beanery),  The flower shop ( The Rose Garden),  then the restaurant. The restaurant was nicely laid out with uber chic furniture and the lighting created a romantic ambience to it. There was a little  set up for alfresco dinning.  I was instantly attracted to the corner with the cutlery chandelier ( really nice piece of art). There was just something about the ambience that drew you in. bistro 7 10 bistro 7 12The drinks menu  was  not particularly extensive but it had a little bit of  everything. Cocktails are off my list for a while, so I settled for wine, I looked at the prices of the wine and I did a double take…. these  dudes that drink wine are real cashogies. The wines were priced between N 8,000- N 30,000 ($53- $200). Its not small something at all. We ordered from the house wine list . Dami & I ordered the  Arra Blanc et Noir 2011 (Rose) and Deyemi ordered the Torres san valentine(white). Each glass cost N1,100($7).  Were we served what we ordered? We would never be able to tell. The wines were not poured in our presence. Wine enthusiasts in the house, help a novice out please. Is this the norm? I learnt quite a few things about wine here. bistro 7 7                                                                    a.Torres san valentine. b. Arra Blanc et Noir Rose.

Deyemi: As we stepped in, we were greeted by a waiter who didn’t seem to match the upscale environment and I was to find out soon enough that he knew next to nothing about the food being served. Luckily , a supervisor was on hand to answer our questions and give recommendations about the menu. Another thing I noticed was the cluster of other waiters who paid us absolutely no attention. I found it interesting when the waiter confessed the white wine listed was not available and there was a substitute. On Peju’s insistence he showed us the bottle AFTER pouring our wine from the bar – I’ve always suspected most restaurants list fancy named wines and serve something else.

On to the food menu, for our appetizer we requested the Ravioli, whilst we waited, we were served  delicious warm bread…..it tasted more like cake. I would love to steal that recipe. Then the Ravioli came,  for how quick it came,  I reckoned it was not freshly made. If it was freshly made,the cheese filling in it would have been somewhat stringy and the spinach would have greener and not that wilted. It was served with some sort of gravy ( efforts made to know the name of the sauce were futile). It was delicious nonetheless. We unanimously scored it an 8. bistro 7 1 The food menu had quite a number of Italian staples. For our entrees, we ordered The Prawns Thermidor, Fish in Saffron Sauce and Chicken Cordon Bleu. We did not have to wait too long. The three came at the same .  For a couple of secs , when the meals came, I was just transfixed, the three plates looked “scrumpdelicifantasticalllllyyy”  good!

First up was my Prawns Thermidor ( N4800-$33), this was cut up sauteed  jumbo prawns served in baked  cheese sauce, with 2 sides- sauteed vegetables and  mashed potatoes. As always, I asked for black pepper for my mashed potatoes, and I dug in..first question I asked was why it had to be one jumbo prawn because it  was so dang tasty! Talk of foodgasm. The prawn was perfectly seasoned and that cheese it was baked in took it to a different place of perfection. The mashed  potatoes was smooth, rich and creamy. The vegetables can best be described as perfectly sauteed and seasoned  mushrooms, peppers and the juiciest cherry tomatoes. The three dishes had the same sauteed vegetables.I grudgingly let Dami and Deyemi taste it. I had a problem with the plate my entree was served in, it was a bit too small and my food was almost spilling out. bistro 7 2

Deyemi: For my entree, I had The Chicken Cordon Bleu (N 2,900-  about $20). This was served with mashed potatoes sauteed vegetables and a creamy mushroom sauce. Having tasted everyone else’s meal, My meal was in my opinion the tastiest. However it was slightly more salty than I thought was necessary. The chicken was tender and nicely seasoned. The vegetables were really nice too.

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Damilola: I had the Fish in Saffron Sauce (3900-$24). I had it with herbed potatoes and a  bright yellow sauce ( apparently the saffron sauce) My meal was colourful and tasty  with the most delicious vegetables ever. The fish and sauce  portion was quite generous.  I did not like the fact that my meal  was served in such a small plate. I did not want it to finish.

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After our entrees, we were handed the desserts menu. It had seven desserts on it out of which only 4 were available.  Did u say hmnn? Well,  that was not the problem, the problem here was the prices of the desserts. The cheapest dessert here was N1,500($9). For desserts kwa? So I respected myself and said no but for the sake of our review we had to order at least one . Finally, we settled for the Triple flavoured frozen panacotta (N1,500-$9) and the Butterscotch Crepes with banana (1,800-$12). This desserts had better take me to cloud infinity or else…. The desserts arrived and three of us gasped! gasped because of the portions. What? The more you look the less you see!! This is extortion simple.

The triple flavoured frozen panacotta was almost none existent on the plate. This was 2  mini cylindrical Panacotta on a bed of strawberry coulis  garnished  with halved grapes. I liked the presentation. but it did not live up to the billing. The menu described  this  as layers of  vanilla , chocolate and coffee in a cream based dessert, it was not this, the coffee and chocolate were lost on me. It was rubbery…too much gelatin? The strawberry coulis was delicious though.  We scored it a 4. (based on taste and portion). It was not worth that price!

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Damilola :  When it was time for desserts, I chose a Panacotta, expecting a nice dish of creamy goodness, I was more than  disappointed to see two tiny cylindrical globs in the middle of a big plate in the name of desserts.Waste of money. This picture must have been magnified like a gazillion times.

The Butterscotch crepes was nicely presented. Yet again, I did not think it was good value for the money. It was 1 slice of  crepe and a scoop of ice cream filled with overripe banana and drizzled with butterscotch syrup. Did it hit the mark? No. it was regular …a little dry. The ice cream was  grainy and the over ripe banana it was filled with was not exactly appealing.  We all felt we should have stopped at the entrees. We scored it a 4.( based on taste and portion).

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 Deyemi: Ordering dessert was a waste of money and a downer for me. The crepe did not taste fresh and there was something about the butterscotch … that didn’t work for me – It was TINY for the price.

After the meals,  the supervisor  came round to ask how we enjoyed the meal, we commended the nice meals  and  also mentioned the portions and the quality of the desserts we were unhappy with, he apologized. there was no offer of a replacement .

Dami:  Bistro 7 needs to increase the size of their plates, reduce the prices of their desserts (or increase the portions) and also put a sign outside that makes the place stand out on the road.

We paid  about N 24,000 for one appetizer, three entrees, two desserts, and three glasses of wine. What saith thou? Expensive or OK?

As promised , I reviewed the restroom. It was well maintained and things were kept tidy in there.

Would we go back there? Yes

MY SCORE CARD

Layout / Ambience/ Aesthetics – 8

Quality of food- 7

Customer Service-6

Value for money- 6

Thank you for always  reading.

Bistro 7

273B, Kofo Abayomi street,

Victoria Island, Lagos.

0807-668-7777