Sushi has long enjoyed a successful run as this city’s trendy food, but watch out because there’s a new Hero in town.
Hero, a Japanese street kitchen that opened in June of this year, is set to revolutionise what people think is trendy. Located on the ground floor of the Fox Hotel, this stylish bar and restaurant is capturing the authenticity and atmosphere of a Japanese street kitchen.
They place an emphasis on simplicity, style and high quality ingredients, with Hero’s strength lying in their unique approach to dining. The atmosphere at Hero can be compared to an Izakaya, a down-to-earth place where locals drink sake and beer after work while enjoying food.
Every detail has been designed to create an amazing atmosphere − one that I have yet to see anywhere else in the city. Oozing sophistication and a too-cool-for-school attitude, Hero is so much more than another stock standard Copenhagen sushi place. They also offer a delicious range of snacks, salads, small dishes, meats from the grill, yakitori (skewered meats), tempura, sashimi, sides and, of course, a range of sweets.
Sipping on icy cold Kirin Ichiban beers, we began with some delicious Edamame beans that proved a winner throughout the whole evening. Wanting everyone to be chopstick heroes, we were also given a bowl of mixed nuts, soy sauce, and told to start practicing. The owner swears this is the best way to learn.
With our chopstick skills up to par, we tucked into two of the small dishes: a perfectly prepared Tuna Tataki with yuzu sesame dressing, and Scallop Katafi served with wasabi mayonnaise and pickled cucumber. Having recently tried the Scallop Katafi at what many Copenhageners would argue is the city’s best sticks and sushi restaurant, I can easily say that Hero is the winner.
Already in heaven, we moved onto the Yakitori, which is a Japanese specialty in which the meat is skewered. Served in pairs, we had the grilled shrimps served with a sake dipping shot, and the teriyaki beef with fresh ginger. The shrimps were large and tasty and paired well with the sake shot. As for the teriyaki beef, I was left speechless. Having tasted a lot of beef in my life, this was hands down, without a doubt, the best I’ve ever tasted. If you go to Hero for nothing else, you must go for the beef Yakitori.
Fearing it could get no better, we cautiously navigated towards the Duck Breast, with orange and teriyaki sauce, served with rice. My duck-adoring partner was extremely impressed by its tenderness, but the rice was a bit on the dry side.
Looking to make sure we got in our daily five, but with a bit of a naughty twist, we tucked into the tempura vegetables. Although a bit on the salty side, they were nice enough. The Soba noodles with hot sauce and fresh coriander leaves is a nice staple dish, as is the Green beans and peanuts in sesame paste. One side dish, however, which is a must-try, is the deceivingly simple-sounding Cabbage with ginger and chili. It truly was a small bowl of spicy vegetable heaven. Priced at just 40 kroner, this dish would make a great quick treat on the way home.
To finish we tried what most Danes will judge Hero on: their sushi. Leaving our sushi future firmly in the staff’s hands, we started with the Mackerel Nigiri. Having never tried it before, I was slightly scared by the remains of a Mackerel face staring back at me, but in it went. Now, while I won’t be rushing to have this one again, it is obviously a very unique offering and therein lies its merit.
From the Uramaki sushi selection, we had the Tempera long beans with five spice aioli and scallions. Not usually a fan of vegetarian sushi, I am now a convert. The five spice aioli gave it a nice twist, whilst the tempura beans had a lovely crunchy texture. To finish our hero-worthy experience, we sampled the Kaburimaki sushi with asparagus and avocado, topped with salmon, chives and ikura. A fresh sensation, the salmon in particular practically melted in your mouth, which is always a good sign of its quality.
Reasonably priced, impeccably chic and unbelievably tasty, this is the place to go if you want to be a hero amongst the trendsetters.
Jarmersplads 3, Cph V;
Open: Tue-Thu 17:00-23:00,
(Kitchen closes 22:00)
Top Dish: Beef Yakitori
Price Range: 40-125kr