When I first moved into the new flat, I didn’t have much to do. The WiFi was not installed, my flatmates had yet to move in and to top it all off it was raining. So despite the down pour, I grabbed my umbrella and set out to explore the surrounding area.
While out on this miserable day, I discovered a small restaurant that I have fallen in love with, specifically their grilled teriyaki eel.
Walking down a street near Turnham Green Tube station, when I spotted a small Japanese restaurant called Makoto. As I had not had lunch, I decided to try it out. Stepping inside I was greeted by a chorus of hello’s from the staff behind the sushi bar. I settled down at a table by the window and started to flip through the menu.
A dish caught my eye almost immediately, grilled teriyaki eel. I loved eel, but could rarely find it back in Switzerland and had only seen it a few times in the UK and often it was too expensive for a student looking for a casual meal. But this was only £11.50 and it came with miso soup and pickles. I could hardly believe my luck that I had found this place so close to my new flat. I barely glanced at the rest of the menu before I had ordered it.
I waited with growing anticipation as my stomach growled. First came the miso soup, piping hot with tofu and seaweed swimming around in the bowl. I sipped at it, not wanting to fill up before the main event.
Finally two large strips of eel arrived in a huge bowl of white rice. The teriyaki sauce was a rich dark brown and contrasted with the pure white rice. The eel was cooked to a golden brown. When tasted, the sweetness of the teriyaki sauce complimented the saltiness of the eel perfectly. The pickles helped clean the pallet between bites of eel, so as to enjoy the flavours anew. I finished every grain of rice in that bowl and I still craved more of that sweet, salty eel.
This restaurant has become a regular place that I go to, often with friends and family, but sometimes just for the guilty pleasure of perfectly grilled eel.
57 Turnham Green Terrace, Chiswick, London W4 1RP, UK
Credit for header image goes to Makoto.