Having stumbled out of Black Sheep, we stepped next door, straight into Iktus Sushi House for a real meal. This place treads a fine line between take-away and restaurant, but as Strop points out, it has proper tables set for eating, and walls covered with photographs of all the food you can order, so we can’t ignore it. We continue with the evening’s theme by ignoring the Nominatively Determined Ordering rule. No sushi for us tonight, instead we order edamame, gyoza two ways (green/steamed and prawn/fried), seafood yakisoba and unadon.
Our table is tiny and so close to the front that passers-by have to step around us. This is where we like to sit when it is just the two of us. The passing parade gives us something to talk about and papers-over any awkward silences. After a short disagreement about who ignored the other and reached for their smartphone first, the food started to arrive. As the plates kept coming our table real estate values sky-rocketed and we eventually had to put the phones away. The food was bought by a taciturn Japanese man in a bright turquoise Hawaiian shirt and a straw hat. Very up beat.
The green gyoza was nice and so were the prawn ones, even though they were deep-fried, rather than pan-fried. We managed to burn our mouths on both types, the liquids inside resembling molten lava as we bit into them. The unadon wasn’t bad (Strop likes a nice bit of eel), but the seafood yakisoba was disappointing. Greasy and over-seasoned. We have a bottle of ginger beer each to accompany our meal.
What with the ginger beer, Hawaiian shirt, and unremarkable food, it is all bit as if we are still on holidays, except for the floorshow. King Street is always entertaining, and tonight it has laid on the disparate group of bikers who congregate each week at Gelatomassi (two doors down). The first to arrive tonight is a leather clad road warrior on a huge Japanese sports bikes, who turns out, when the helmet is removed, to be a young moslem woman – complete with head scarf! Take a bow multiculturalism. Next is a big bloke on an electric-blue chopper with a Greek-Cypriot theme going on (very classical). Then three little guys on a variety of big loud bikes show up and try and man-handle their mounts into the limited number of spaces available. There is a lot of discussion about who should park where, and eventually the last two to arrive are sent into purgatory across the road. They are not happy about it either. They obviously want their bikes close by, so they can keep an eye on them while they sit on the street and lick their rum’n’raisin cones.
With all this excellent distraction going on, we accidentally eat all of the food that has been put in front of us. Oh well, it’s all in the cause of research after all. While Strop is buying a gelato for dessert, a car pulls out of a parking spot right in front of Gelatomassi. It is as if someone has fired the starting gun at Le Mans. Bikers abandon their gelatos and short-blacks, and rush to bikes scattered on both sides of the street, starting them and riding back to the poll position parking place that is being guarded by the big Cypriot guy.
It must be nice to have a passion in life, I think as Strop offers me a lick of her peanut butter gelato.