Saturday, February 19, 2011

Samurai Mama's Udon Noodle & Gyoza Dinner

This post will mark a new foodtography era for me, as these photos represent the inaugural run of my new compact camera, the Canon S95!  The camera is highly acclaimed for its lowlight capabilities, which is essential these days since eateries can be so dadgum dark.  I eagerly decided to test it first in a dimly lit scene and take all photos using no flash (!!).

Presenting Samurai Mama's, a newish restaurant to the Williamsburg scene, from the great minds of Bozu (that charmed Greeshma and me last year with their sushi bombs).

The restaurant's doors flap in the wind and in your face as you try to find the real door handle.  Cute!

The restaurant is rather large, with seating in the front via a large, communal wooden table, a couple of booths along the side, and additional seating in the back via the bar seats and the garden area.  I sat immediately at the end of the table.  My legs felt enormous as they kept brushing against the top of the table, so hopefully that was just my seat ( coulda been my thighs! gah!)
Their homemade gyoza came recommended; it comes in both pork or vegetable flavors, so I opted for the pork (naturally).  I love when food does not come out the way you imagined it!  In a gyoza pancake!

A very thin crispy batter united the six pieces of pork gyoza.
The gyoza themselves were standard, wrapper was the right thickness and the pork tasted fine.  I woulda preferred it with a touch more chives, but I am a chive maniac.  They tasted as bout as good as my favorites at Lan Zhou except this plate of gyoza came with...
Pickled seaweed!  I usually shy away from anything pickled, Diana can attest to that, but this pickled wonder was delicious!  It was more savory, slightly sweet, dense and spicy...perfect atop each meaty bite.  I want to find this in a jar and eat it all the time!
Nikujil Kake Udon - hot soup + pork betty slices + scallions (I also found a couple of thin slices of eggplant too...score!).  When I saw the pork betty mentioned, I just had to order this since the days Greesh and I ate a whole plate of pork fat together (a memorable event!).
The soup tasted immediately a tad fishy which is strange, but it also tasted sweet with each bite of the pork betty.  The further I dug into the bowl, the less fishy it became, and the more I began to like it.  The broth was thin and not too salty (though I was pretty thirsty after I ate all of it).  They also offer a vegetable based broth option, and one Yelp reviewer claims that the mushroom udon comes with a different, most delicious broth altogether, so maybe there's a chance you won't experience the strange fishiness I did (or just get used to it all the same).  Nice ample bowl of noodles though!  

I'd visit Samurai Mama's again because it's nice to have a udon noodle place in the neighborhood, and the the comfortable, communal vibe is fun, and the food is fairly priced.  Total win for Williamsburg!

205 Grand St
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Samurai Mama on Urbanspoon


  1. Are these really low light pics? because they don't look like it (not grainy, blurry, etc). On your next journey out can you take pics of the same item with different cams so we can see the difference? :)

  2. they were all taken without a flash...but i need to work on understanding the manual capabilities of the camera better to make the pics really look good, i think. it is much improved from my old beatup SD890 comrade, so it's definitely a start!

  3. Mmm... mushroom udon sounds especially tasty.

  4. ummm i am LOVING the new cam!! you know what else i'm also loving? pickled seaweed. and pork belly. and the udon. and the beautiful flower-like-bottom of the gyozas stuck together! so pretty :)