Restaurant review: Chrysan, EC2
- Credit: Archant
Chrysan, an upmarket Japanese restaurant, is clearly aimed at City suits, plonked as it is in the middle of an unpromising business wasteland.
It’s also a bit of a struggle to find, for me at least, and I spent a good quarter of an hour wandering aimlessly amid the towers of Liverpool Street on a cold winter night.
Our welcome was warm enough though – we were ushered into the psuedo-Nipponese dining room and presented with a saucer-full of sweet saki and lychee.
The cocktail and wine selection was good, including some Tony Conigliaro-inspired aged affairs, and not too pricey, while the food menu was extensive – sushi, sashami, salads, soups, mains and more – and pretty expensive.
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The taster menu seemed a good way to tackle it and first up was what can only be described as a seafood crème brulee. Sounds horrific I know but actually had great texture and a light, pleasing flavour.
The Sashimi selection was exquisite – immaculately presented miniature portions of seafood – crab, prawn, bream, tuna, salmon – all with their own inventive sauce. Delicious little taste explosions.
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The sushi plate was OK, without being exceptional –while the soup course, a green, legumey replacement for the advertised dish, was a bit unsettling in both taste and consistency.
But, my main – Clouds and Crystal – was very impressive indeed; a bowl of meat and mushrooms cooked on low heat for a couple of hours and brought to the table with a cloud of candy floss on top.
Our waiter put it on a burner and melted it into the sauce in a visually impressive start to the course.
The taste was a traditional Japanese mixture of sweet and soy, the meat was very tender and combined with onions and candy floss put me in mind of the fairground.
Our other main, Scotland meets Kyoto – appropriate enough on Burns Night – involved scallops, lobster and mussels in a miso broth.
All good quality, but I was a touch fished out by then.
The whole shebang was washed down with matched wines – fuller-bodied than you might expect with raw fish – and lashings of smooth, sweet saki.
Head chef Yoshihiro Murata has created some elegant takes on Japanese food here, but it comes at a price – at £85, the taster menu had too many misses to be worth the cash.
However it’s worth a visit for the sashimi alone.