I was delighted to review Umi in Stockbridge for this issue. Sushi is something I enjoyed all the time while living in California, but I have struggled over the past three years to find sushi of the same quality and taste in Scotland. Well, I am delighted to say that I have found what I’ve been waiting for in Umi Japanese Cuisine. This restaurant is phenomenal.
I took along my boyfriend, Ben, who had never tried sushi and had no idea what to expect. He came out a master of chopsticks and a new-found sushi lover.
Umi is located in Stockbridge, which is a vibrant area of Edinburgh with a village vibe. It’s a little less hustle and bustle than the city centre but when you walk down the stairs to the bottom level of the Georgian terraced building where Umi is located, you open the door to a full restaurant. Everyone looked relaxed, laughing and enjoying the experience. The staff couldn’t have been more welcoming and took us to our table.
The place had a great feel, with red lanterns in the ceiling, comfortable tables and ambient lighting. There was also a private section that had traditional pillows for seats.
We decided to start with a traditional Japanese draught lager, which we found light and refreshing. I am a woman who loves a good lager. I tried to take a bit of control of what we were ordering but Ben had some of his owns ideas and ended up ordering a dish I’d never have thought of ordering, and it was delicious! We shared everything which I always think is great in a small plates restaurant and gives you more of a feel for the place! Everything was brought out in good time, not too fast, as I always find that disconcerting, but at a nice pace.
Truffle Edamame (V)
Steamed green soybeans topped with sea salt and truffle oil
Miso Soup (V)
Traditional Japanese bean paste soup with wakame, tofu and spring onion
Takoyaki (Ben’s choice)
Fried dough balls with octopus served with mayo and house sauce
Roll Sushi (8 pieces)
Crunchy Soy Roll
Prawn tempura and avocado roll in soy paper topped with eel sauce, dill sauce and crispy fried onions
Karaage Fried Chicken, avocado and lettuce roll topped with flying fish roes and mayo
Yes, you read Truffle, and yes, truffle oil makes even vegetables taste unbelievably good. But I cannot guarantee that they have the same nutritional value or that they are low calorie. Our favourite roll was the Crunchy Soy Roll, it just melted in your mouth. Don’t let “eel” sauce put you off as it tastes nothing like you think it will and, I would say, is one of the best sauces ever!
Ben was in heaven with his Takoyaki; the word Octopus put me off for a second but not enough not to try it and I’m so glad I did! Absolutely delicious!
Our choices strayed away from the traditional raw sushi as I’m a huge fan of sushi rolls like they serve in California. It shows that you don’t have to eat raw fish if this isn’t your thing, there are still plenty of options at Umi. But, if tradition is your thing they have an incredible nigiri sushi Menu!
I was also impressed with their wine selection and they had one of my favourites, a Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlborough region of New Zealand. The refreshing wine went well with the sushi!
THE BIG QUESTION WILL WE BE BACK?
Yes! We are already planning our next trip through! Follow them on Instagram @umiedinburgh to see for yourself all the delicious dishes! A hidden gem!