Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Basho: Japanese Brasserie

I am very intrigued about Basho, a new Japanese brasserie that is coming to the Kenmore Square area, near Fenway Park. I love Robata grilled foods so look forward to this restaurant. Plus I enjoy Japanese cuisine in general, and am excited about their Saké selection. I'll have to check it out soon.

This modern Japanese and sushi restaurant is from Jack Huang, the owner of Douzo in the Back Bay. Basho (Japanese for “a place where things happen”) has an extensive menu, prepared by their culinary team. The team includes Chef Youji Iwakura of Uni and Clio, Executive Sushi Chef Hai-San and Kitchen Chef Jun Zhong. They plan to modernize traditional Japanese gourmet cuisine, using Western styles, methods and ingredients. Iwakura’s creations reflect his traditional Japanese training, as well as his whimsical flair for the unexpected.

Similarly, the bar program at Basho represents an appreciation of the traditional (think: Japanese Saké, beer and wine), as well as a curiosity for the modern cocktail culture (think: house infusions and homemade simple syrups using fresh, local herbs). General Manager and Sommelier Rowan Walsh, formerly of Avila and Davio’s, oversees the wine and Saké lists, educating guests on appropriate pairing recommendations.

Signature dishes include:

Flavored Sushi and Sashimi (traditional Japanese flavors added directly to the seafood)
--Seared Rare Toro with barbecue sauce, fresh wasabi and truffle oil
--Kanpachi Carpaccio with shiso yuzu-kosho dressing and chardonnay gelée
--Cured Saba Sushi with crunchy mushroom and apple mustard soy
--Foie Gras New-Style Sushi with Fuji apple, sweet potato, coconut and wine teriyaki soy

Raw Bar (fresh, local seafood with hints of Asian flavors)
--Local Oysters, Cherrystones and Scallops
--Maine Sea Urchin
--Maine Lobster Sashimi
--Kuruma Ebi

Signature Rolls
-Basho Roll: fried snow crab, lettuce, shiitake, asparagus, pickles and jalapeno aioli, wrapped with cucumber and soy paper
--Fenway Roll: asparagus, cucumber and avocado, wrapped with seared tuna and wasabi tobiko
--Tiger Roll: eel and cucumber, wrapped with smoked salmon, torched squid and salmon roe

Robata Grill (traditional Japanese charcoal grill for meat, vegetables and seafood grilled on bamboo skewers)
--Pork Belly rolled on asparagus
--Japanese Eggplant
--Wild Prawns
with miso

The 7,500-square-foot space offers a variety of seating and lounging options – from a traditional dining room featuring floor-to-ceiling windows facing the street, three customizable private dining spaces, a communal seating area, wraparound bar, sushi bar and raw bar, to a 48-seat outdoor patio with retractable awnings for the warmer months.

The restaurant also features a glass-enclosed Robata grill bar, a traditional Japanese charcoal grill used to cook meat, seafood and vegetables on bamboo skewers. Traditional robata grills use Binchō-tan, a traditional Japanese charcoal. It burns at a higher temperature than regular charcoal, and also contains less moisture. It can produce incredibly moist and flavorful grilled meats and veggies. Basho will use some Binchō-tan, but it won't be 100%.

They will have a full bar, with a selection of beers, wine and Saké. As for Saké, there will have about 8 available by the glass, and 16 available by the bottle/carafe. They will carry some excellent and diverse selections, from Sparkling Saké to organic Nigori, including several that I very much enjoy. They even will carry one shochu.
When I do dine there, I will report back.

Basho (Web site not operationally yet)
1338 Boylston Street
Boston, MA
Phone: 617-262-1338


adc said...

Any idea about when the grand opening day might be?

Richard Auffrey said...

They are supposed to open already.

Unknown said...

Basho is open

Anonymous said...

grnad opening tonight may 17