Somoza, Niseko, Hokkaido
Dec 15, 2018
SOMOZA & ZABORIN
It was one item off the bucket list for chef Hisashi Udatsu, who first visited Somoza with the To Dining team as part of our November scouting trip ahead of our Kayama to Ohashi production slated for January 2019. Between the soba lunch, onsen soaks and scenic drives in between, we were all blown away by the sheer beauty of Somoza's views this autumn afternoon.
Fast forward one month, we got word that a group of friends from Norway, Russia, America, Malaysia and Korea were to spend a long weekend in Niseko's mid December slopes. From Toyosu fish market to Haneda, Haneda to Chitose and finally Chitose to Niseko it was all a blur until we set up shop on Somoza's oversized dining room counter. Looking out into the same river gorge but with the autumn foliage long out of sight, Udatsu and sous chef Okiyama began preparations for what was to be an equal parts intimate yet epic evening that started off with welcome drinks in the downstairs gallery, two turns of a master tea ceremony finally leading into the main event of the night, an 18 plate omakase and sake pairing.
"There was a point during dinner when, in unison, everyone burst into laughter and i could see my chef immediately grinning ear to ear. I was having a beer. I will never forget that moment and Im sure neither will Udatsu-san."