Japanese is one of my favorite cuisines. I love how diverse their food is in both taste and presentation. I have been wanting to get better at food photography and decided to start with my favorite kinds of food. I went to Kampai the other night and had brought my camera along so I could shoot the meal.
The atmosphere is warm and dim with tons of Japanese paraphernalia. The lighting made it a challenge to shoot. Very quiet and comfortable, both traits which I appreciate in a restaurant. One side of the room houses a long bar where patrons can watch their sushi order completed by a chef. The other half are tables. Off to one side are hibachi rooms where chefs are throwing food in a dinner show. We settled at a table to order our meal.
The dishes we ordered were Japanese Beef Curry, Spicy Shrimp Yaki Udon, an Eel Roll and a Rainbow Roll.
Unlike most curries I’m used to, It’s not as thick. The curry is more like a sauce but the flavor is unmistakable. The zing from the spices compliment the beef. Unlike most Asian restaurants, they didn’t skimp on the vegetables. They were fresh and crisp, which was awesome. You can actually see how fresh they are just by looking at the leaves of the young shoots in the picture.
While there wasn’t as much spice as I would have liked and it leaned more towards sweet than spicy, the shrimp dish was overall still pretty good. There was an ample amount of shrimp and the udon noodles were just the right consistency. Udon noodles have a tendency to get too slimy and gross but they were just the right kind of soft.
The shrimp were juicy and the flavor was not too strong. Again, the vegetables were delicious. Look at those fat shrimp. :)
The sushi we ordered had come out right after we started our meals. I love bbq eel and order it almost every time we got out for sushi. Tonight was no exception.
The eel was really good! If you’re familiar with eel, it can really be hit or miss on the flavor but tonight’s eel was right on the mark. The filling was some sort of crab and cream cheese mixture which really augmented the flavor of roll.
The other roll, the rainbow, I forgot to take a good picture of until it was half eaten. Oops. It still had its cute little flying fish roe topping so I took one anyway.
It had tuna, salmon, whitefish and avocado topping it throughout its length, hence the name. It’s a great way to sample a variety of different fish on one roll.
I highly recommend Kampai. The food is excellent and at a decent price. Dinner was about $11 for the hot meals and $8 for each sushi roll. Usually you order just one or the other but I really wanted to photograph some sushi You can visit Kampai here:
Got a favorite cuisine or restaurant in the area? I’d love to check it out.