Fu-Do Noodle & Sushi Bar: review
Top notch independent restaurants, such as Il Paradiso, El Gaucho and Khao San, have already provided the street of Walmgate with an amazing reputation amongst avid foodies. With the re-branding of Tokyo Joe to Fu-Do and its re-location onto the quirky street, it will, therefore, have a lot of competition for hungry Yorkies (Yorkites? Yorkians?). However, with a little development, it certainly has the potential to provide another cherry on top of an already pretty tasty cake.
With only about seven tables in the tiny restaurant, it does seem a little like eating in someone's living room, albeit a very contemporary and suave one. When I visited, there was only one waitress and two chefs. The kitchen consists of a dividing wall between the action and the diners. However, you are served quickly and attentively and the sounds of food cooking from the kitchen creates an intimate atmosphere and helps to detract from the overdose of Adele and Ed Sheeran on their questionable playlist.
After promising my sushi-virgin dinner partner that I would initiate them into the enticing world of raw fish, I opted for salmon nigiri to start, probably one of the most popular types of sushi and great for first-timers. They have a good range of nigiri sushi, from flying fish roe to asparagus, however the range of maki could be extended and some handrolls added in.
The salmon nigiri was presented well and very generously portioned with a thick slice of salmon that tasted really fresh lying on top of firm, sticky rice. The urge to tell my naive friend that the blob of wasabi on the side is traditionally mixed with soya sauce and snorted up the nose Steve-O style was nearly met. However, succumbing to the need to be a good person I relented, and the verdict was 'ohhh this is amazing'. Operation Sushi Initiation: SUCCESS.
For main, I chose the Stir-Fried Udon noodles with chicken. Although the noodles were nice, I had to battle through a forest of bean sprouts and other miscellaneous vegetables to get to them, and the chicken was slightly dry. After such an amazing starter, it was pretty disappointing.
However, my disappointment with my own food could have been slightly exaggerated by the huge chicken katsu curry bento box that my dinner partner was smugly tucking into directly across from me. The portion of chicken was very generous but the sauce was a little too runny and apparently not as good as Wagamama's signature one. However, the novelty of it being served in a traditional bento box more than made up for it and brought up a nostalgic reminiscence about school dinner trays and turkey twizzlers.
Overall, the prices are pretty average. Normal rice or noodle main courses are around £9 with bento boxes rising to around £13. The hot food isn't the best I have ever had and the choice is quite limited. However, it is definitely worth going for the sushi alone. If you don't know your nigiri from your futomaki, the mixed sushi bento box may be a good option to try out a variety of different styles. If you're an old hand at this raw fish business, you may find the range a little lacking. However with a little refinement of the hot main courses and an expansion of the range of dishes, it could definitely become the great Japanese restaurant that York needs.
37 Walmgate, York, YO1 9TX
Tel: 01904 640222