Otori Japanese Restaurant

This establishment is homely—the décor is bare, the chopsticks disposable, and the place (surprisingly empty for a Saturday night) a little lacking in ambience. However, the staff were friendly and promptly showed us to our table. As the à la carte offers pretty much the same as the a la carte buffet menu, we opted for the latter. We sought a sake recommendation from our server, who pleasantly surprised us by suggesting the cheaper Tamano Hikari Yamahai over the other more expensive options. His choice was correct. Cold and served in a cup within a small wooden box, it went down smoothly, and our waiter helpfully showed us how the drink is traditionally consumed. We continued to order throughout the meal, and received prompt attentive service each time, with plates and bowls changed when needed and new orders arriving within minutes. The servings were small but adequate, and since we could always order more, we didn’t mind. The sashimi was lovely, fresh and thick, with salmon, tuna, yellow fin, octopus and sea bream varieties. We ordered several rounds of each. Both the udon noodles and the cha soba were soft with a bite, and the miso was aromatic and delicious. Unfortunately, the gyoza skin was too hard and thick, and the potato salad arrived like a scoop mashed potato that was cold and with a strange unidentifiable taste. We found the tempura prawns and vegetables average, and the pan fried beef tenderloin covered in a sickly sweet sauce. The bite sized fried chicken was better with tender juicy pieces. Stuffed, we finished our meal with a yummy vanilla ice cream. With pleasant staff and efficient, obliging but unintrusive service, we agreed we would return—but be more selective in our orders.