Today me and a few colleagues piled into one of the project’s nice land cruisers and headed out to find Gekkos for some sushi. The restaurant has been operating for some time now as delivery only but they recently opened a very nice dine in restaurant.
When we first pulled up outside there was no sign but I was fairly sure that the gate with the 2 big geckos on it was the right one so our driver let us out and we went up to the gate and knocked. Shortly after knocking the gate opened up on a very nice outdoor seating area that was well thought out and designed with an outdoor bar, a few different seating areas, and a nice water feature.
We debated on sitting outside or inside but the host settled it for us by telling us our reserved table was inside. The inside of Gekkos featured a few tables and a magic carpet sushi bar. For those who have not traveled around Asia or have not been to one of the magic carpet sushi places in the US or else where; a magic carpet is a convener system that brigs various sushi options within easy grasping range allowing you to select what you want to eat. Each dish is usually a different color which indicates the price of the dish, though some places may put a color sticker on the bottom of the plate hopping you will eat more expensive items if you are not able to see the price of the dish.
OK but enough about the restaurant, let’s talk about the food, and I can honestly say it is the best food I have had in Kinshasa, or the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo), or Central Africa and that is not just because it was the only sushi I have had in Kinshasa, or the DRC, or Central Africa.
In our group of 4 there were 3 sushi eaters and one non sushi/ non fish eater so the 3 of us decided to split the 73 piece tuna and salmon set while the non sushi eater settled on the beef stir fry (looked fantastic). In addition to the sushi I decided to have a tempura Udon , which turned out to be too much but I ate it any way.
The sushi was the first to arrive and I can tell you 73 pieces is a lot of sushi. I am not going to pretend that I am able to tell you what each individual piece is but I can say that the dish, which came in two boats (I guess you could say we had a couple of boat loads of sushi) included salmon and tuna in various forms including; nigiri, sashimi, and rolls. The fish tasted fresh, which must be a big challenge for the almost land locked country, and dipped in a little Wasabi soy sauce it practically melted in your mouth.
Shortly after the sushi showed up the Udon made its appearance, fashionably late to the party. There was nothing special about the Udon, it was good but I have had much, much better, it was a very basic Udon with noodles in broth and what I think may have been some formed crab disks but I am really not sure. Thankfully the tempura was served on the side so it did not get soggy so it was nice to dip one of the tempura shrimp or vegetables in the broth and still be able to eat it while it was mostly crisp. I think they could have done a little bit more with the Udon but their focus seems to be on the sushi which they definitely do well.
After lunch two of us (including me) decided we would have desert and settled on splitting the Mochi and a brownie for a nice blend of the east and the west. The Mochi was unlike any Mochi I had ever had before, it was a little softer and a little less gummy than what I am used to and was filled with ice cream, two with vanilla and two with green tea, and they were not very ball-shaped. But looks aside the Mochi was very good with a light dusting of course sugar on the outside and the cool ice cream in the middle. The Mochi was garnished with a nice fresh and perfectly ripe slice of mango which was an excellent finish to the Mochi, luckily no one else wanted the mango so I had it all to myself.
The brownie came with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream, a heavy dusting of coconut flakes, and a big G in chocolate sauce was basically just a brownie. The coconut was fresh and that was a nice touch but other than that I would not likely get the brownie again if I found myself back at Gekkos.
Alas our meal was over and it was time to pay the bill (which came out to around $50 each for those who ate sushi) and head back to work. All in all it was a good meal and while a bit on the high price for other markets it is about what I expected to pay for good sushi in Kinshasa, especially since they seem to have the market cornered.
Hope you enjoyed and hope to see you again soon.
P.S. It has been a while since I have worked on the blog and while I have a few false starts sitting in draft form I will admit I have not been feeling very writative (talkative but for writing I guess) for the past few months and when I saw Hang had posted another excellent post after her long absence (and after she bugged me a bit and threatened to fire me from the blog) I decided it was time to get back into it and this seemed like a good place to start. I hope you enjoyed and I promise I will be back in the next few days with another post from Kinshasa.