Etsu, Liverpool

This cosy place has been one of our special occasion destinations for a few years and is somewhere we like to go as a couple. After both finishing work for Christmas we travelled into town to enjoy some Japanese food and a drink or two. So it was a shock when we arrived this week, after a long hiatus, to see the intimate, authentic little restaurant we knew had doubled in size and modernised. I’m not ashamed to say I was a bit disappointed. Going there used to remind me of our honeymoon trip to Tokyo, now it seemed a bit less special.

Our starters

However, the quality of the food is unchanged, it was still fresh and delicious. As sushi lovers we tend to order hot starters and then lots of sushi as our main. We began with mixed tempura, Yaki Tori chicken skewers, Niku pork Gyoza, and Yasai Korokee potato croquettes. All came with dipping sauces and were polished off in record time. I love the gyoza here, they are luscious and even though the croquettes were at nuclear temperatures they were a lovely new addition to the menu. Though eating them with chopsticks wasn’t easy.

Sushi sharing platters

We ordered lots of sharing sushi and sashimi platters for mains. It was all beautifully presented as usual and other than the octopus sashimi (which I’ve never understood the need for) it was delectable. I don’t think I could pick a favourite but the salmon sashimi was fresh as anything and you can’t beat a maki dipped in wasabi and soy sauce.

Salmon sashimi

Normally that would be enough but we splashed out and ordered deserts. We both had Nutella filled gyoza and were surprised when an elegant plate with sugar decorations and ice cream was placed before us. The Japanese aren’t known for their deserts but this fusion was naughty but nice.

Nutella gyoza

With a fabulous menu, a large selection of drinks including a special Japanese whisky menu, lovely attentive staff and amazing food I can’t recommend this place enough. In fact I am not surprised they had to make the place bigger as it’s so popular. We will definitely be going again, I just hope we don’t leave it as long this time.

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