During the Sushi portion of the meal at Urasawa, if Hiro-san notices that you particularly enjoy an item, he'll make another for you. At the end you can also request additional nigiri if you desire....or are still hungry(still hungry???).
I asked if I could get another Shiro Ebi:
Like the flavor of several Ama-ebi(sweet shrimp) condensed into one piece of nigiri sushi.
For Captain Jack, it was much easier for Hiro-san to figure out what he enjoyed. There was a certain scene in the movie When Harry Met Sally, that I think many will remember. So we'll just call this...When Jack-ee met Uni, get the picture?
I think Hiro-san understood, Jack got a beautiful "Double-decker Uni Nigiri".
To finish out the sushi portion; Hiro-san asked us if we'd care for anything else. All night long we'd been ogling and plotting, attempting to get more of he Kobe Beef, wanting to experience the wonderful flavor and texture of Kyushu-heaven.
So with a smile Hiro-san asked if we'd like Beef Nigiri.... And after receiving enthusiastic positive nods(I almost threw my neck out), we were asked us how we'd like the beef done, which was a unanimous "rare, almost raw". The slice of beef spent the briefest of time on the brazier, made into nigiri with a small amount of Nikiri-joyu, and placed on the Geta for consumption......delici-yoso!!! All during this time Hiro-san, Jack, and I were chatting about food, and well.....food, and maybe a few other things. So in case you're wondering, Hiro-sans favorite Chinese restaurants? Din Tai Fung for dumplings, and Sea Harbour in Rosemead("They know me, and what I enjoy....").
At about this point of the meal, Jack quick-wittedly asked Hiro-san if we could get him a drink. He smiled and accepted, and modestly ordered a Sapporo. When the beer arrived He asked us about our drive back to the Hotel, to which we replied we're "cabbing it". Upon that reply, Hiro-san called over one of His assistants and had her split the beer with Jack and I, and we had a very memorable toast of "Kampai"("Cheers"), with the Chef and Owner of what some consider to be the most expensive restaurant in Southern California. Hiro-san than set back to work, and the Tamago arrived. I asked Hiro-san if he is now showing us his skill as an Itamae(Tamago is considered by many to be one of the dishes that truly indicate the skill, diligence, and attention to detail, of any Itamae).
This Tamago, was vastly different from any version I've ever had. The tamago was light like spongecake, I could almost imagine catching clouds on my tongue. The flavor is mild, slightly sweet, with the faintest flavor of the ocean.
Soon after, the most pristine piece of Hachiya Persimmon arrived, this photo made the Missus terribly jealous. Hachiya being an "astringent" type of persimmon, will taste bitter and cause you to really "pucker" because of the tannin in the fruit if not ripe.
A dish of Sesame Ice cream arrived, topped with soy milk and gold leaf, the ice cream was almost like a soft and creamy mousse. Very nice and not overly sweet.
We had two cup of tea to close out the meal. A light, and almost frothy Ma'cha(green tea):
And a Genmai-cha(Green tea with roasted rice) to finsh things off.
As we were leaving Hiro-san called to Jack and Myself. All night long when we had something really, really amazing, we'd give each other a "Fist Pound", by now my knuckles were hurting! Hiro-san stuck his closed fist over the counter, and we gave Him a fist pound as a way to close out the evening......
I must say, that Urasawa was the most unique and memorable dining experience I've ever had. A combination of amazing food and great service in a unpretentious atmosphere; along with a humble, amiable, and very highly skilled Artist(there's not other way to describe it), made Urasawa unforgettable. In fact, the Missus and I are planning our next visit sometime next year.
Oh.....yes, the damage?
Jack and I split the bill, so my portion came out to $452+$100 tip = Worth every penny! And yes, I do realize that it would be over 100 bowls of Pho'!!!!!
Postscript - I've gotten more than my share of Emails regarding Urasawa, so let me clarify a few things:
Price - Walking in the door, and the multi-course meals starts at $250. Any drinks, including water, which is Evian at $8 a crack, will cost you. We drank two bottles of Kubota Manju, which was a perfect compliment to the meal at $150 each. So if you break down my portion it's $250+$8+150=$408. I'm assuming the rest was tax and "Extras".
Is it really worth it? - In my mind, yes. After all, I've waited a few years for this. Let me put it this way, if I was on my way to the Electric Chair, and had a last meal, it would be Urasawa's Kaiseki-Omakase dinner. I'd walk happily to the chair, and tell them; "LET HER RIPPPPP!" LOL!