Dom quote

Dom quote

The Michelin Guide has consistently awarded more stars to Tokyo dining establishments than any other city in the world. I created this blog as my personal Tokyo restaurant guide, but I hope you will also enjoy reading it. If you have been to any of the same places feel free to leave some comments about your own experiences.

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Saturday, 17 April 2010

Argent, Meguro アージエント目黒(中町)

Argent, located on Meguro Dori not far from the trendy Hotel Claska, is a French restaurant that has been going for 30 years now. I'm not sure that much has changed in the last 30 years and this probably, if anything, explains how it has lasted so long in the cut-throat Tokyo dining scene.

I recently attended a special 30th anniversary dinner there and it seemed full to the rafters with lots of local female types d'un certain age who may well have been going there all that time. Good for them! The food is good, honest French and, for what it is, is quite edible. The bread is extra good, and tempted me (I am only half sorry to say) away from my carb minimisation regime - at least just for one night.

Here are the highlights of the menu from the anniversary dinner:

The first course was a country style terrine, which was a nice start (but no pic I'm afraid - must have been too hungry to remember to take a pic).

Tuna Tartar "Paris Esprit", which went beautifully with the garlic croutons.
The "Dream Salad" of grilled scallops. Did the recipe come to the chef in a dream? Scallops were cooked in something yummy I couldn't identify.
Seafood and Mushroom Gratin - beautiful aroma.
A5-rank (!) beef cheek.
Rare cheesecake (very soft)
Strawberry tart.
I'd recommend Argent for a little, informal dinner where the aim is more to relax and enjoy each other's company than to impress with the sophistication of the food. We don't really need a mini Robuchon every day, do we?

Tel: 03-3792-4445

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Teppan-ya, Hiroo 鉄板屋 広尾

I think, not unreasonably, I had assumed Teppan-ya was a Teppanyaki restaurant, but it's more interesting than that - specialising in all types of grilled meats and fish. Located on Meiji Dori in Hiroo I've walked past it a number of times in the past few months thinking that the facade and midget-level door probably had something kind of interesting behind them.

One recent evening, as I was wandering around looking for something to try for dinner around Hiroo my dining partner and I decided to check it out.

The overall feeling is modern Japanese and I really liked the ceramics used for the plates and ashtrays. BUT, ashtrays!? This is 2010 isn't it? Ne! Haven't all other parts of the civilised world phased out smoking in restaurants. I understand that it's nice to have a ciggie or ten during dinner, however it's something that makes it smelly and unpleasant for everyone else (and also makes a smoker in remission like me think about what it would be like).

Despite the smoke, the food was actually rather good.

This crab was DE-licious! Kind of earthy, juicy and clean all at the same time.
This is okonomiyaki. Nice, but not their best dish.
These prawns would have been delicious just on their own but went nicely with the crunchy broccoli and mayonnaise. There were just a few smears of mayo left after about 60 seconds!
This is "chu-toro" tuna. Crispy on the outside and juicy inside. Majorly nice!!
Scallops cooked just right with soy sauce and butter.
This grilled pork (like thick cut bacon), was accompanied by a STRONG yuzu paste. Yum!
This is raw beef with a mustard sauce - hmm - I actually prefer beef cooked, but it was worth a try.
You could definitely take foreign visitors here as no one can
really object to a nice piece of grilled fish or meat. Can they?

Tel: 03-5739-1488

Sabado Sabadete, Shirokane サバドサバデテ 白金台

I've been walking past Sabado Sabadete at the bottom of "Platina Dori" in Shirokane for years. Once my curiosity recently reached a threshold I had, in the last few weeks, made a couple futile attempts to make a booking. Futile, not because I think the restaurant was booked up but because nobody answers the phone. Well, given the age of the flirtatious Catalonian proprietor and his helper, it's forgivable if they're not hanging around during the day waiting for my call.

The food is good, honest Spanish tapas. Rather nice I thought was the frittata, especially once it had been spread with some of the huge dollop of aioli provided alongside the bread. Here are some pics for you to salivate over (ok, I forgot to take pics of everything, engrossed as I was in the sparkling conversation of my dining partner):

And here's one of the proprietor drinking out of this weird little beer vessel that had previously been passed around all the patrons in the restaurant. You can see it's quite hygienic as noone's lips actually touch it!

I'd recommend Sabado Sabadete for a pleasant, laid back evening jaunt back to Catalonia. The food is tasty and the service warm. I also need to warn you, the proprietor does not speak English so it's Japanese or Spanish all the way!

Tel: 03-3445-9353