Several months ago, I reported about former Chez Shea chef Mutsuko Soma and her desire to bring a soba restaurant to Seattle. She did a pop-up at Sushi Kappo Tamura, serving zaru-soba as part of a multi-course lunch to showcase her handmade buckwheat noodles.
Soma’s pop-ups continue, with the latest at Miyabi Sushi in Tukwila. This time, the menu featured bukkake soba. The minds of non-Japanese may immediately run to porn upon hearing the word, but Japanese people know that bukkake stems from the verb bukkakeru (sprinkling water) and means “to dash or splash or sprinkle.”
In culinary terms, my understanding has been that bukkake means “pouring” (of liquid), as in pouring broth over noodles for bukkake soba. But Soma had a different explanation. She said that bukkake means “tossing in” or “splashing on,” with her bukkake soba options all featuring a variety of tossed in ingredients.
Whatever the exact meaning, the bukkake soba event was fun for Soma and her subjects. While I still prefer zaru-soba as the best way to experience the noodles (and Soma’s soba is high quality), the bukkake menu offered a nice variety of enticing noodle options. I was tempted by the Neba Neba noodles (with slimy okra and grated Japanese mountain potatoes), but instead chose two that you can see in the photos below.
If you want to get in on the soba action, Soma’s next event will be August 27 at I Love Sushi’s Lake Bellevue location. Cost for the five-course meal will be $38 and will include a unique demonstration of making soba. Back on this side of Lake Washington, she’ll be popping up at Skelly and the Bean in October, with hope of another event sometime in September. You can keep posted on all future meals (reservations requested) at the Kamonegi Facebook page.
This Amuse Bouche of tomato with cheese was the start to the lunch.
I especially liked the roasted eggplant and the shishitos in this Summer Vegetable Appetizer course.
Here’s the Edo soba with shrimp tempura, wakame, grated daikon, green onion, and bonito flakes. This soba seemed the most traditionally Japanese of the four offerings, with a good balance of flavors.
Buta Goma soba featured shabu shabu pork, Walla Walla onions, cucumber, asparagus, and sesame vinaigrette. Again, a nice balance of flavors, and I especially enjoyed the runniness of the soft boiled egg I ordered as an add-on.
For dessert, the buckwheat tea-flavored panna cotta was a pleasant surprise. A little thicker in texture than I like, but nice flavor.
Here’s a look at the menu.