At the entrance of Mar Mikhael street, the recently popular dining and nightlife hub of Beirut, is Tamashii.
You're welcomed into a nice architectural set up as you walk into this small restaurant, Tamashii, serving exquisite contemporary Japanese cuisine. I loved the wood paneled walls, the red tiles line following the shape of the square place, the light red ambiance as well as the television installed between the bar bottles and more importantly the high ceiling which compensates for tightness of this nice eatery.
A friend of mine invited me to Tamashii, as he considers it to be one of the best sushi places around. It was a pleasant and interesting lunch where we tasted few of Tamashii's best plates. In my opinion the pieces should be smaller to fit into your mouth which enables you to better taste and feel the ingredients of each piece. Bigger is not necessarily better: Smaller and cheaper is much more appreciated.
We Ordered from the varied menu:
- Salmon Tartar (Salmon, Cucumber, Marinated Onions & Ginger, Lemon) This is one of my favorite, so fresh and tasty with the lemon adding a extraordinary taste to the mix.
- Dragon Tamashii (Crab Meat, Shrimp tempura, iceberg, tobiko) That's a success indeed.
- Spider Tamashii (Soft shell crab, crispy crab-sticks, scallion, tobiko) Delicious and unique, a premiere for me, but a bit tricky to eat.
- Tuna Pesto Tamashii (tuna, parmesan, cheese, pesto) Sorry, cannot eat garlic. A plate I couldn't even lay my eyes on.
- Fried Agimono (crab, eel, cucumber, iceberg, mango) The mango adds a mouthwatering taste to this warm mixture. That's a plate prepared with love.
- Scallop Ikura (Scallop, salmon roe, cucumber, dry seaweeds) Bravo!
- Chocolate Biscuit (served in a sushi style way) Very average like any biscuit a grand-ma can prepare. I would have added some flavor or a new invention to the mix.
What I didn't like:
- The leather sofas. Very big and sticky and unpleasant to sit on during summer season. They are too high for the tables.
- The pictures on the menu are too unprofessional: Very dark, shot on a black or red background making them look dull and masking all the details. Pictures taken with my iPhone look better. A re-shoot is a must!
Small details count:
- I loved the perfumed micro towel that expends when soaked in hot water
- The welcoming and professional waiters
- The presentation of their fresh plates
I would surely recommend Tamashii.