Nasty Evil Ninja Goes To See The Shogun
As most of you will know – I’m always up for trying new (and unusual) food.
I do like sushi, but I’d never actually been to a proper restaurant to try it. All I’ve had is the pre-packed, err… packs that you can buy in supermarkets and stuff. So it’s a bit like saying “I like Italian food” when all you’ve had is microwave lasagna meals.
When a few of the lovely Office Monkeys I work with decided to arrange a meal at a sushi restaurant, I jumped at the chance to go!
Even better – we’d found somewhere that did an all-you-can-eat buffet for a set price.
I eagerly awaited the arranged day, probably a little more excited over it all than I should be! One person dropped out on the final day (she realised there wasn’t much but fish on the menu, and doesn’t like it – don’t ask!), but the rest of us, most who had never tried ANY kind of sushi, finally got it all sorted out.
We went to Shogun, which is in The Mailbox in Birmingham city centre. For about £12 you could choose whatever you wanted from the sushi selection, and eat until you dropped.
When we entered, we were directed to sit on little stools surrounding a moving conveyor belt that had small dishes constantly moving around.
You literally grab a small plate full of various foods as it comes past you, and chomp it down.
Each of the small saucers contained three or four lumps of sushi (I’m no expert – have a look at this link for the names of the different types: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sushi ), noodles, or stir fry.
We split some of the dishes between us, as they are very deceptive in how much they fill you up. I’d gone in expecting to have 10 dishes minimum to myself, but in reality had half that or less.
The freshness of all the food shone through immediately, and it was all presented immaculately.
The conveyor was always kept full by the chefs, so there was never any shortage, or having to wait for more to appear.
Between us we tried lots, and nobody managed to find anything we didn’t like!
The conveyor belt thing might sound a little cold and industrial, but in contrast it creates a very sociable atmosphere. I also noticed that, unlike most all-you-can-eat buffets, nobody there was stuffing themselves with stupidly huge portions of food to ‘try and get their monies worth’ – it all seemed very respectful and civilised. Even stranger when you consider there was absolutely nothing to suggest in any way you were limited to how much you could eat, or even how much you could leave half-eaten.
Japanese food can be very expensive (indeed, some of the dishes on the regular menu were pretty pricey), but as a stereotype you’d also expect it to be of a very high quality. The food at Shogun didn’t disappoint. In fact I’d say the sushi buffet option is an absolute bargain!
With the amount of vegetarian sushi I’d recommend it to anyone – although it can be hard to tell if some of them do contain fish, so you’d have to be a bit careful.
The only criticism I have is that the stools aren’t the most comfortable to sit on, and none of the dishes are labelled. If you’re a fussy eater, this might drive you mad – it was a mild irritation to me because I WANT to know what that strange bright red fish was, because I’m trying to munch my way through every animal in existence.
Not that it REALLY matters, because you eat your fill, and ALL of the fish is beautiful.
I’ll be looking forward to the next time I go there – and I don’t think that will be too far into the future!