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Nomu Sake Bar When the senses go travelling

Tuesday, January 11 2022
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Opening Times

Wednesday to Sunday: 6:00pm - 10:00pm

Address

Nomu Sake Bar
Ludwigkirchstraße 3
10719 Berlin-Wilmersdorf
.How to get there

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+49 171 9465180
.www.nomusakebar.de

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We love wine. We love all kinds of drinks, but sake has been a closed book to us until now. Sarah, owner of Nomu Sake Bar in Wilmersdorf, will take us absolute newbies on a sake journey this evening. But not only the world of sake will open to us this evening. 

Sarah also guides us through Japanese food culture, gives recommendations on the amount of sauce or wasabi (it's real here, of course), and even encourages us to eat with our fingers. Then, as in a traditional Japanese izakaya, the dishes are shared with the entire table.

The menu at Nomu Sake Bar is season-based, as is customary in Japan and fashionable today. The menu follows a delicate path between the best ingredients and traditional Japanese cuisine, which is always complemented by contemporary interpretations - and creates a dining experience that will leave us raving for quite a while. Because everything is really perfect here.

Starting with the small dining room, which transports you directly into another world. It's full of references to traditional Japanese culture: origami lamps, an impressive ceiling installation of traditional sake cups, selected porcelain, even the washroom is reminiscent of an onsen spa.

Nomu Sake Bar Berlin shot by René Riis (1)
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin shot by René Riis
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin shot by René Riis (2)
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin Shot by Yuto Yamada
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin Shot by Yuto Yamada (2)
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin Shot by Yuto Yamada (4)
Nomu Sake Bar Berlin shot by René Riis (3)

Then there is the exceptional hospitality of Sarah and her team. She is full of patient enthusiasm and answers every question about sake and its production processes. And of course, the sake pairing should be mentioned, for which you should decide whether you choose the omakase menu (meaning you put yourself in the highly experienced hands of the chef), or if you eat à la carte. 

Like the name Nomu Sake Bar suggests (Nomu translates as "drink"), you'll quickly become an aficionado here. In Japan, sake is regulated in a similar way to beer here. It is only allowed to have four ingredients: Rice, water, yeast, and koji. Sarah shows us polished grains of rice from which sake is made. The process is supposed to ensure an unmistakable taste, as most rice starch remains. Her demonstration object is an extreme example; eight percent of the rice grain is still left. 

Everything you taste comes from either milled rice or the yeast - and we taste an impressive variety of flavors that evening. Some of the sakes are aged, tasting earthy and intense, while others are light and fruity. While you might need a sophisticated palette with wine, with sake the flavors present themselves surprisingly clear.

We are thrilled, especially with the more modern sakes, which Sarah usually serves cold. They don't need to be warmed up, as they are often quite fruity. But Sarah is also very enthusiastic about the old-school sakes. Since the traditional sakes have vibrant umami notes, they like to be enjoyed warm so that their flavors come out even better. This will be the case at Nomu Sake Bar, especially in the depths of winter.

But of course, we don't just drink: one of our personal favorites, Hakkaisan, we drink alongside the cod liver. It has aged three years at -3°C in an ice cave in Nigata. Especially in combination with the dish, both flavors unfold elegantly metallic. Almost as if water and earth were embracing each other. But it gets even better.

Sarah serves a fruity, juicy sake that adds a surprising but extraordinary note with the Wagyu Nigiri. The Miyabi Kyoto Wagyu is one of the highest quality beef available. "We eat it very Japanese," Sarah explains. She recommends to eat the nigiri by hand. There's a rich fat grain running through the meat, and each bite lingers long in the mouth. Lucky, because it's fantastic. So much so that you almost want to shout it out. 

Surprisingly, we were served a dish not on the menu that day. Sarah explains that Nomu Sake Bar uses every part of the fish and therefore serves a surprise dish every evening. The tuna cheeks that end up on our plate tonight bring an amazingly handsome size. We eat with our hands again.

It's so much fun, so delicious that we keep nibbling and eventually leave only skeletons on the plate. The Kokuryu Sake, which translates as Black Dragon, not only sounds fancy, it also tastes like it: a little fruity, a few roasted notes, a lot of umami, all at the same time. At last, we are now addicted to Nomu Sake Bar and our sensory journey to Japan.

Travelling and food are two things that always inspire us at Creme Guides. Both touch people. Often enough in combination. What more can we say. Everything is perfect here. Outstanding.

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Nomu Sake Bar – When the senses go travelling
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