Where to Eat in Santiago – Restaurant Japon

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The tendency of some food reviewers is to be hyper-enthusiastic. Everyone has put in a lot of effort. There was a tough mise en place. I got dressed up. We all want the process to go smoothly. Food blogs can read like a sigh of relief, a verbal round of applause that nobody messed it up. However, sometimes it goes awry.

At Restaurant Japon in Santiago, I was worried about one dish on the day and I got food poisoning not long after. Is that cause or correlativity? This joint gets rave reviews from others. I think on 9.9 days out of 10, those are right. The miso was great.  But when do you gloss things over and when do you say that something went  wrong?

Details
Restaurant: Japon
Location: Barón Pierre de Coubertin 39, Santiago, Región Metropolitana, Chile
Website: Click here
Patrick visited in 2017

Location

I did struggle to find Restaurant Jason on Google Maps. There is a Japanese hotel nearby and I went there by mistake. I bet they got a lot of meandering Irishmen. I enjoyed the entranceway – there was a lot of 2×4 wood used!

The Space

I took a seat at the counter.  There were also tables in a variety of small rooms, but I thought I’d like to see the action.  There was one Japanese chef, supported by 3 other chefs.  I think the son of the chef patron was there observing, perhaps starting to learn the trade.

The units at the counter were refrigerated and held small dishes of pre-cut salmon and tuna. After a couple of weeks without sushi (last time was at the much better Big Mouth Sushi in South Africa), I knew I wanted salmon, but was open to nigiri or some kind of dragon roll. I took a punt on a roll stuffed with tuna and avocado.

Food & Drink

First up was a free starter of a square of fried tofu.  It was tough as old shoe leather. Is that a thing? I may have missed it.

A bowl of miso soup was very good, refreshingly salty and with fresh scallions chopped through it. Delicious.

When the sushi roll arrived, it turned out that the rice was crispy, which I quite like – it does give a textural variation. I did notice that the salmon had a slightly different texture to what I was used to in Tokyo or London. It was not particularly firm. Hmmm. It’s the spring in the salmon that I like.

Insider Tips

On the way out, I stole a glance into one of the function rooms. Assuming I had a singular bad experience and you have a group, this would be a beautiful room to use for a function.

Summary

Sadly, this is one restaurant that I can’t stand up and applaud. The soup I would drink every day, but everything else didn’t work out for the best. Sometimes it is what it is. No point in glossing over it.

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I'm Patrick, your Irish guide to the skies and beyond. With 58 countries visited, my journeys have taken me from busy economy to fabulous first-class.

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