Tempura Nagomi @ Inaba

Tempura Nagomi is a new concept that occupies the former sushi counter inside of i-naba. The original tempura counter is still there but is now sharing space with a sushi area.

chef hiro will be switching between both counters; working at tempura nagomi primarily and at the original on off nights. an assistant will be at the original counter when chef hiro is at nagomi.

the tempura was excellent as always and the non-tempura items were fine but i could do without them. aside from a couple special tempura pieces (fresh shrimp, amadai, snow crab) i believe you can order everything else alc at the original counter. i’m glad i tried it but next time i’ll be at the original counter ordering alc with a side of soba, battera and extra squid and shittake. or if i wanted to splurge go to tempura endo.

chicken pate with uni sauce


steamed conch with daikon

baby ayu

prawn tofu


scorpion fish
a bit overcooked

kamo sakamushi


where’s the rest of my head?


tile fish
never had this as tempura before and it was fantastic. the fish was fluffy and the scales were left on to crisp up like potato chips. reminded me of a dish i had at jungsik once. if they offer this alc it’s a must order. highlight. @Chowseeker1999, @foodshutterbug, @Starchtrade, @TheCookie, @attran99, @chinchi, @NYCtoLA, @Hungrydrunk, @Bookwich, @thechez5

lotus root

freshwater smelt

kisu (japanese whiting)

snow crab

barracuda ponzu
nice acidic interlude to reset the palate.

a bit tough


daikon, cucumber, tamago, salmon
another nice refresher


tairagai no isobeyaki

sweet potato

perfectly fried with no grease at all

miso soup

kakiage tendon


Tempura Nagomi
20920 Hawthorne Blvd
Torrance, CA 90503


seems like a lot of food. what’s the bill pre t&t?

probably flavoring his broth

1 Like

Thanks for the great pics and report @PorkyBelly. It seems like our initial gut reaction rang true:

Hiro-san’s Tempura is always great, but stick to the a la carte menu, and bypass the Sashimi and other items that spike up the bill. I’ll definitely keep an eye out for the Tile Fish thanks. :slight_smile:

1 Like

For those who have never had high end tempura in Japan, the style of the incomplete shrimp head, is done so by design.

Those “half heads” are referred to as ebi nashi (in the case of Tempura Motoyoshi in Tokyo, one Michelin star as pictured as an example below). My best guess is that these master tempura chefs figured out a way to capture the juices in the back portion of the head from the cut, and the front side tends to be harder to bite (which is true if you ever tried to gnaw on a deep fried shrimp head or prawn head in a Cantonese restaurant that does a soy sauce pan fried or salt pepper version). So not only do you get the original flavor of the head, you also get the best possible eating experience without worrying about firm/tougher parts of the shell, as the harder parts have been removed.

I can attest to its deliciousness as I had the exact same thing at Motoyoshi a few years ago.


My kinda’ food.

Translates to Razor Clam, Mochi Tempura? It’s like a test.

Very good reminder. I have pieced my lips and tongue more than a few times on hard shells.

1 Like

it was quite a bit of food, i didn’t even need my usual battera and soba supplements.

it was $200 pre t&t prepaid via tock

1 Like

Isobeyaki refers to the nori wrap. It’s a way to eat savory mochi but it’s also a term used when nori is wrapped around a food when being cooked.


Tairagai is pen shell clam but some refer to it as fan shell. Typically only it’s adductor muscle is consumed. Can be served raw as nigiri, or grilled first then consumed with seaweed as isobeyaki. First time I’ve seen it in tempura form. It’s an interesting variation.

Other variants include grilled scallops (I personally like it thick uncut and medium rare at most), and grilled mochi with seaweed folded to wrap it is very classic. Freshly grilled senbei (rice crackers) brushed with a sweet soy sauce then wrapped with nori is one of the best things in the world too.

Then there’s isobemaki. Cut roll form, no rice inside.

That smelt should be wakasagi. I would have wanted shirako tempura at that price point. Baby ayu looks like shirauo :thinking:


i’m pretty sure this was just blowtorched

I’m so glad they’re working something else on that counter. I did the sushi counter last year and it was just plain bad. Bummer bc the tempura omakase is very good. This seems like a step up from both. Will check it, especially since I live 5 min away…

1 Like

can you elaborate?

I have always felt the sushi at Inaba was “weak” compared to everything else.

1 Like