Like romance novels, dumplings fit tempting tidbits into a small but steamy package. Passionately devour cuisine with today’s Groupon: for $20, you get $40 worth of Asian-inspired fare at Umami in Chagrin Falls.
At Umami, chef Matthew Anderson fuses seasonal, local ingredients and from-scratch sauces into a menu of Asian-inspired cuisine that has earned nods from the Plain Dealer and Cleveland Scene. Recently spotlighted on WKYC, Anderson’s locally procured udon noodles ($19) interlace spicy steak and shiitakes, and chopsticks break from "Wipeout" drum solos to clamp around the seared-red-tuna sushi roll with avocado, basil and yuzu ($9). Ginger butter slathers dumplings ($9.50), whose doughy exteriors encapsulate tangy goat cheese, and salmon ($20) dons a coat of coriander before lounging on a bed of parsnip puree. Guests’ eyes can flit across the intimate eatery’s dark brick walls punctuated by vibrant artwork, where Umami’s culinary maestros also happily accommodate vegetarian, gluten-free, and garnish-only diets.
Under the guidance of chef Matthew Anderson, whose cooking has been spotlighted on WKYC, Umami serves a contemporary pan-Asian menu that changes with the seasons. Locally sourced vegetables, tofu, meats, and goat's-milk products are at the core of Umami’s innovative Japanese cuisine, working in harmony with imported, never-frozen seafood to earn praise in publications such as Cleveland Scene and Cleveland.com’s A-list.
Diners enjoy their small and large plates beneath delicate pendant lights that softly illuminate the romantic setting decorated with floral artwork and bamboo shoots. Umami offers a small list of wines, beers, and sakes that harmonize with meals, as well as tasty cocktails such as the Lotus with lychee and ginger.