For the last few months, the Nakama pop up has been dominating my social media with pictures of delicious food. Last week I was fortunate to head to Adams Restaurant for their May pop up.
Nakama Restaurant, run by Nottingham’s award winning Chefs Paul Thacker (Chino Latino) and Hira Thakur (World Service), is an Asian inspired pop up at venues across the city.
Adams Restaurant is the location of their most recent pop up. Students on catering and hospitality programmes from Nottingham College train in the restaurant as part of their course, and you can tell. It is endearing to watch the students learn as they go, and they were all lovely, if a little forgetful at times.
Oh my goodness what a stunning venue. Nestled in the heart of the Lace Market on Stoney Street, the front of the building is stunning. Large stone steps lead up to a beautifully crafted wooden door, and then into the reception. Turn right and you enter the main dining room. There is plenty of seating and the ceilings tower metres above you.
I am no wine buff, but my dining partner Gaz (The Gaztronome) knows quite a lot about vino. He chose a delicious Cullinan View, South African Chenin Blanc, and at under £15 it was great value for money. He also said that the whole wine list was surprisingly good.
While we ordered our drinks we were presented with a delicious maki rolled in togarashi chilli. God it was spicy! Vegetable maki, topped with hoisin sauce. The salty, slightly sweet taste of the sauce complimented the spicy rice.
For our first course we were treated to a smoked chipotle miso salmon, yuzu nashi pear and daikon. This dish blew my mind! The salmon was perfectly cooked with a delicious glaze atop it, sweet and salty and earthy. The presentation was stunning with a strong squid ink foam and gorgeous crisp black nests of goodness knows what!
Next up I went off menu as the course contained goats cheese. Instead I had a courgette and cucumber roll with mango and papaya relish and coriander. Again this was delicious, some of the best vegetable sushi I have ever eaten.
Next up was duck breast, hispi cabbage, plum & nasturtium. Deliciously pink with a crisp skin, this duck was succulent and moreish. The nasturtium, with its peppery taste topped this dish off perfectly.
Then came the incredible crispy soft shell crab, courgette, kaffir lime veloute and sesame. The only way I can describe this is as the best katsu curry I have ever eaten. The crab was fried in a light tempura batter and the tang of the kaffir lime tingled on my taste buds.
Dessert stole the show for me. Last up was a white chocolate pistachio fondant, crushed pistachios, raspberry foam and a raspberry coulis. Sublime. The sharpness of the raspberries blended so well with the sweet, slightly saltiness of the pistachios and the pistachio butterscotch(?) was delicious.
Overall this meal was incredible. One of the best I have eaten to date I think. The value for money is phenomenal (under £25 per person plus drinks) and the flavours were spectacular. It is incredibly hard to choose a favourite dish as each was so different yet somehow followed on from the last. I would highly recommend heading to a Nakama pop up as soon as possible, before they open a restaurant and the price increases significantly – as it should!