Thursday, September 6, 2012

The other Noma...

I came across this cafe recently in Kyoto - the name struck me as a little opportunistic at first but the Japanese owner explained the "ma" had something to do with  the (oft used in Japanese-food-tv) exclamation "Uma!" the shortened version of Umai ( Delicious/tasty/flavour). The "no" being Japanese for "of"...well that's the loose translation.. so "of flavour" if you like. So no legal action warranted...
Its a pretty place - a very comfortable spot clearly aimed at Japanese "ladies". 
Its a tad girlie, a tad idealistic Euro kitchen with old fashioned aprons and hats ( think wannabe Babette's Feast/the Duchess of Duke street) -and, well,  a tad Scandi. An interesting mix.
The hand-drawn menu was very cute
The coffee was actually quite decent. Rather more successful than the  "Croque Madame" -  a curious version consisting of toasted bread with cheese,  Bolognese sauce and dill..... It was "tasty" but not exactly what I was expecting.. ie NOT a croque madame. 
I really would have liked to have returned to give it another shot as I only ate there shortly after it opened.. and the owner was very friendly.  Alas, even though its been a few months since my visit,  I ran out of time. So if you happen to make it there do let me know about your experience. The vibe was very pleasant but I just wanted more from the food.. am I being too greedy? Perhaps. 
LOCATION: on Niomon Dori, a couple of blocks west of Jingu-michi ( turn west just south of the Giant red Torii gate that leads you upto the Heian Jingu or shrine). On the south side of the street.  The fabulous woodfired pizza place - Da Yuki is very close by -more on that soon. 

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