Browsing articles in "Restaurants & Bars"
Feb 11, 2013
rebecca

Baby Star Land

Baby Star Land

Enjoy retro snacks at Baby Star Land

Retro snacks will be the order of the day at Baby Star Land in the new Chinatown complex Yokohama Hakurankan, slated for opening mid-March (145 Yamashita-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama). The Baby Star facility enables lovers of the potato-chip style snack to witness them being created right before their eyes—and then slurp them up hot and freshly made. Apart from other food outlets on the second floor “Oyatsu Factory,” the Hakurankan will boast a Yokohama market as well as a garden terrace to sip Chinese tea, eat sweets, and zone in on the Zen.

Feb 10, 2013
rebecca

Saddle

Saddle

Courtesy of Basashiya Masashi

Flutter on the horse’s meat in the Skytree’s shadow at newly opened Basashiya Masashi (6F HK Asakusa Bldg, 1-1-16 Asakusa, Taito-ku; Tel: 03-3842-5600). Tuck into delicacies like the white fatty tategami, or the grilled senba hire steak (¥1,980). Get intimate with equine motor functions by chomping down on spinal cord tempura (sekizui), then relax with the horse-less karashi renkon (deep-fried lotus root with mustard). The goten mori offers five types of basashi for ¥2,380. Clients are mostly 60-something chain-smoking men—who know a good bet when they see one.

Feb 10, 2013
rebecca

Old-school Asakusa

Fried oysters at Yutaka

Fried oysters (kaki furai) at Yutaka. Photo by Yukari Sakamoto

A visit to Asakusa is a little like stepping back in time. The historic shitamachi district is filled with great restaurants, many of them very traditional and with a focus on just one cuisine. The menus and décor of these shops reflect the quaint, nostalgic atmosphere of the neighborhood. If you’re looking for that old-time Tokyo vibe, then the following backstreet eateries are well worth seeking out.


OTAFUKU

Oden, the hot-pot stew of fish cakes and vegetables, really hits the spot in this cold weather. Kanto-style oden is made with a rich, dark-colored soy broth and is the typical type served in Tokyo. Otafuku, however, serves it Kansai-style, with a delicate broth that allows diners to better taste the different ingredients. Or so they say.

Otafuku started serving oden in 1915, though they took a break during the Second World War. The fifth-generation owner still manages a large hot pot behind the long, wooden counter. He dishes up orders onto small serving plates and garnishes each one with karashi (spicy Japanese mustard), on the side. Some of our favorite items are rolled cabbage stuffed with ground meat, tender octopus legs, Satsuma-age fishcakes, yuba (tofu skin) and hanpen—a fluffy, light fishcake that resembles a marshmallow in texture. Nerimono is the group of foods made from ground fish, molded into different shapes, and then cooked—either fried, steamed, or broiled—before being added to the pot. The oden is ordered in sets, often three pieces per order. We like to order one nerimono, a vegetable, and then something like konnyaku, kombu, or a hard-boiled egg.

Otafuku has a full menu that also includes sashimi, grilled meats, and gyu suji nikomi (simmered beef tendon). The drink list features the staples: beer and a selection of nihonshu and shochu.

1-6-2 Senzoku, Taito-ku. Tel: 03-3871-2521. www.otafuku.ne.jp


YUTAKA

Perhaps most striking about this restaurant is the lack of that frying smell typical in tonkatsu places. Perhaps it’s to do with Yutaka’s time-honed culinary skills, which it has been sharpening ever since it opened just after the war.

Great attention is paid to each ingredient, from the Yamato pork from Gunma to the panko (bread crumbs), from bread that takes four days to make. Even the earthy nukazuke pickles have a rich taste, reflecting the care taken to manage the fermenting pot of rice bran.

The tonkatsu at Yutaka is non-greasy with a crisp crust and meaty interior. As oysters are in season this time of year, kaki furai (breaded fried oysters) is a special treat. Other katsu include crab croquette, shrimp, and scallops. The menu also includes a sautéed pork dish, as well as the ginger and soy sautéed pork dish shogayaki. Small sides include yakitori, monkfish liver, and shiokara—funky fresh squid innards.

Popular with locals but off the main drag, this shop—which offers excellent service from the welcoming staff—tends to stay largely clear of tourists.

1-15-9 Asakusa, Taito-ku. Tel: 03-3841-7433. www.tonkatu-yutaka.com/index.html


YOSHIKAMI

Also further away from Nakamise Dori and Sensoji is Yoshikami, a classic restaurant specializing in yoshoku—the Japanese interpretation of Western-style cuisine. The dining room feels like a typical American diner with red- and white-checkered tablecloths and a counter overlooking the open kitchen and the cooks at work. A disturbing number of tomato-sauce bottles line the kitchen wall, as it is a key ingredient in the classic omuraisu dish: ketchup-seasoned rice enveloped in a fluffy omelet.

The menu is unusually large and includes many grilled meats, sandwiches and pasta. Our favorites are the rich beef stew, the cow tongue stew, the hamburg steak, and of course, the omuraisu. At yoshoku restaurants the Japanese staple is not called gohan but raisu, as it’s served on a flat Western-style dish and not in a bowl.

When oysters are in season October to March, Yoshikami serves them up grilled, au gratin, à la meunière—and in spicy “Diablo” form.

1-41-4 Asakusa, Taito-ku. Tel: 03-3841-1802. www.yoshikami.co.jp


ASAKUSA IMAHAN

This 6th-generation shop has been serving wagyu nabe (beef hot pot) both sukiyaki- and shabu-shabu-style since 1895—and since

Sukiyaki

Sukiyaki. Courtesy of Asakusa Imahan

1928 in its current location. Marbled Japanese beef is sliced thin for these dishes, which diners cook on small gas burners at each table. During lulls in restaurant conversation, listen for the “gutsu gutsu” sound of the sukiyaki pot bubbling.

Asakusa Imahan created beef Tsukudani, sold at most Tokyo depato. Named after Tsukudajima (the fishing village/island in the middle of the Sumida River), the dish is traditionally made with seafood or sea vegetables seasoned with a sweet soy sauce. The beef version is a modern twist, and is a popular omiyage for diners to take home.

Some of the lunch dishes come pre-cooked—so ask for something you can cook yourself if you want to fully enjoy the experience. Reservations are recommended.

3-1-12 Nishi-Asakusa , Taito-ku. Tel: 03-3841-1114. www.asakusaimahan.co.jp/english


OIWAKE

The food at Oiwake is typical izakaya fare including fish and seafood in various guises, and a simple selection of beer and sake. But people tend to come here for other reasons.

The izakaya is a storied venue for live folk music, where artists like the Tsugaru-shamisen playing Yoshida brothers cut their teeth before hitting it big. The beating of taiko drums provides an energetic atmosphere, with singing and dancing by the talented staff three times a night.

Diners are occasionally invited to sing on stage, a unique live karaoke the shop is famous for. The music is performed at set times in the evening and there is a minimal cover charge.

Between performances the house musicians mingle, and regular customers are always welcoming to newcomers. All in all, it’s a memorable evening­—one that could only be had in Asakusa.

3-1-2 Nishi-Asakusa, Taito-ku. Tel: 03-3844-6283. www.oiwake.info/eng.html

Feb 8, 2013
rebecca

Taj Akasaka

Taj Akasaka

Courtesy of Taj Akasaka

Formerly known for its South Indian cuisine, Taj Akasaka has widened its menu over the last two years. Now offering customer-requested staples like naan and tandoori, chef Ami and his team are also keen on introducing diners to regional street foods they might not have tried before.

A starter is the rassam soup (¥400) from the southern Tamil Nadu area, a house specialty. The hot, sour play of tamarind and tomato broth and other spices was a sharp wakeup call for our taste buds. It set a tough precedent for the rest of the meal. Paired with a simple bottle of Kingfisher lager (¥650), it settled us into a Bollywood state of mind.

Next was the Goan dish chicken cafreal (¥700)—legs and wings marinated and slathered in a popping mint and coriander paste, then grilled and served with lemon and salad. The grilled calamari (¥700), a South Indian favorite, seemed bland after the lively rassam soup. Following came the sookha (¥700), a northern dish of chunked mutton with a spicy dry rub—almost BBQ-style—tossed with garam masala and crunchy bits of fried garlic.

The aloo tikki chaat (¥600) is a street hawker food ubiquitous in India. These mashed-potato cakes, reminiscent of veggie burgers, are fried crispy on the outside, but softy and fleshy inside, filled with veggie goodness. Served with a slightly sweet tamarind mint sauce and a chutney, these were gobbled down quick, bringing understanding of why their name (chaat) means “devour with relish.”

Westernized classics are still on hand, such as samosa (¥500), palak paneer (cottage cheese cooked in spinach) and butter chicken with naan and rice (both ¥1,300). Asahi Super Dry is on tap for ¥500 (¥2,500/pitcher), with wine, etc. from ¥500, and chai or lassis if they are more up your street-food alley (¥400).

The challenge of the Devilz Egg Curry couldn’t be passed up. Hard-boiled eggs simmering in curry look innocent enough, but sautéed peppers and onions smolder in the spicy tomato sauce with peppercorns, cinnamon, cardamom and a wicked garam masala. Be warned: the heat is a slow builder that leads to a very necessary lassi. If you can make it through (without the yogurt crutch), the dish—normally ¥1,300—is free.

We finished up with the chicken tikka masala—and my notes say one thing: “Delicious.” This is Ami’s thick, spicy take on butter chicken (not the overly sweet version) with a creamy, fire-orange sauce soaked up by cubes of tandoori chicken.

Add a vegetarian/vegan friendly menu, some interesting set menus and a bumper ¥1,200 lunch buffet, and the variety of Taj Akasaka’s hawker-style menu is something to return for again and again.

Feb 1, 2013
kencorp

Tempura Buono

Courtesy of Buono Tempura

Tempura Buono exudes exclusivity from its Kyoto-style wooden exterior, curved bamboo slats, paper lantern, and noren curtain over the shoji door. Inside, however, the small restaurant is casual and welcoming. It ought to be: with only three small tables and a clean wood counter, you’ll get to know your neighbors—and what to order— rather quickly.

First, we cooled off with Kirin Ichiban Shibori draft (¥600). We went with the chef’s recommendations from the large menu—after all, he does have 37 years’ experience in upscale tempura restaurants across town. After some okayu (rice in hot water) to coat the stomach (the antidote to tempura grease) our otoshi of sesame tofu appeared, then a large tossed Buono salad (¥650).

The chef suggested shochu so we ordered a round of mugi (wheat) and imo (sweet potato) on the rocks to accompany the hirame (flounder) and ika (squid) sashimi. The sashimi, dressed with ginger and shiso, was fresh and flavorful, not the rubbery thawed kind, and its simplicity paired well with the shochu. The imo (¥550-750) was floral and earthy, while the mugi (¥650-700) was fragrant and delicate with a corn-still moonshine taste. Neither overpowered the light taste of the sashimi or the dishes to come.

Two fried shrimps were on the menu, the maki ebi (¥250) and the oebi (¥500). The maki was served with three kinds of salt (green matcha salt, salt with pepper, and salt with spice), and then came the “Oh!” ebi—long, thick tiger prawns fried in a fritter-like batter. They disappeared quickly along with the lightly battered asparagus and piman (green pepper) dipped in sea salt or tetsuyu sauce. The gooey fried mozzarella was also a welcome surprise.

The in-season ayu (sweet fish) came with a sauce a little too syrupy after the previous simplicity. We asked their recommendation on some reishu (cold sake) and were pleased with the dry, delicate Hakkaisan honjozo from Niigata and the Uragasumi tokubetsu junmaishu from Miyagi (both ¥750).

The chef offered us the kakiage donburi lunch set (¥800) to try. The huge deep-fried veg, crisp and hot, were practically meals in themselves. More than surfeited, we slurped down some ochazuki (green tea and rice with salmon) and enjoyed cold cantaloupe to round out the set.

Tempura Buono isn’t slow food, but don’t rush. This is real-style tempura at bargain prices. Ask for the chef’s recommendation, or the tempura course (¥3,500), and you’ll be battering yourself up for a delicious meal.

Feb 1, 2013
kencorp

Warayakiya

Courtesy of Diamond Dining

Having walked past Warayakiya many times, and always thought it looked beautiful but probably too touristy and very expensive, we decided to try it out when friends were in from out of town. Turns out we were wrong on both counts.

We booked Saturday morning for that night to be rewarded with the best table in the house—one running the length of the open front windows. Seating is also available on the deck outside, or at the counter to witness the chefs employing the technique from which the restaurant gets its name.

The warayaki cooking method from Kochi in Shikoku uses straw instead of coal for a greater burning temperature. The 900-degree Celsius fire is perfect for lightly searing food without touching the insides. A favorite recipient of this nifty trick is Kochi’s specialty, katsuo (bonito).

This is the flagship dish of Warayakiya (¥1,280), and the slabs of red seared fish, served with slices of garlic, wasabi and crystal salt on the side, are like buttery steaks. The meatiness is locked up in a soft, wanton texture, and we eschewed soy sauce in favor of the crystal salt to avoid undue influence on its purity. It’s worth coming here for this dish alone.

But while you’re at it of course, you might as well order more from the pictorial menu (available in English). We tried the deep-fried eel (crunchy on the outside, gooey on the inside; ¥680), the seared mackerel sushi (spectacular; ¥880), and a surprise hit: the deep-fried sweet potato (¥580) that tasted like an exquisite fairground treat.

While all this was going on we were tucking into varieties of sake at an alarming rate (from ¥380). The entertaining list features a grid with two axes: sweet versus dry on one, light vs. strong on the other, with the labels distributed accordingly. We carried out some tastings and failed miserably at guessing which was which. Though we did successfully get drunk.

The décor, with a wooden porch-like facade, subtle lighting and a summer breeze wafting in from the street, gives a classy burnish to the proceedings—as does the mostly Japanese urbanite crowd chattering and noshing away. The only incongruous element to the experience was, happily, the price. For ten or so dishes, half a dozen tokkuri of sake, two rounds of shochu sours (from ¥480) and even a digestif to round it off, the damage was an undamaging ¥4,000 per head. Maybe it’s got something to do with the price of straw.

Feb 1, 2013
kencorp

The Best of Koenji

Map of locations below

best italian

Antica Locale

Courtesy of Antica Locale

It’s not your classic sit-down restaurant, despite a smattering of tables, nor is it a straight-up bar, despite the bottle-lined counter. It’s probably best described as a tavern, and its warm atmosphere, buoyant regulars, and pleasantly arty décor are presided over by Taka-san, one of the neighborhood’s nicest guys. But the prime reason to step through its doors (which are open from 7pm-3/4am), is the sumptuous outpourings from the chef’s skillet. This is unquestionably the best Italian food we have tasted in Japan. And its quality has been corroborated by real Italian people. Kick off with the heavenly penne arrabbiata (¥800), and choose from other pastas and risottos, toasties and entrées, plus decent wine for ¥500/glass or a paltry ¥300 before 8pm.

2-39-15 Koenjikita, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-6383-0190. http://meturl.com/antica

best décor

Nanatsu Mori

Photo by Margarita

Antique furniture, gigantic matchboxes, a wooden counter lining a sunken kitchen, rows of cupboards lifted right out the servants’ quarters at Gosford Park, a menu that could pass for a diary in Narnia, books and lamps and tchotchkes, a squat oshibori heater from Barton Fink’s hotel room, and usually a jazz soundtrack pouring out of excellent speakers… This decades-old artist and musician’s hangout in Koenji-minami wraps you in a blanket of eclectic timelessness and charmed wonder—while serving you heartwarming homemade curry lunch and dinner sets (¥1,050; with soup, salad, drink) at the same time. Their varied menu matches the interior design choices, ranging from snacks and meals to coffee and cocktails, desserts including kawaii hoop-shaped jellies, and more.

2-20-20 Koenji-minami, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-3318-1393.

best home cookin’

El Pato

Photo by Mara Duer

With a handful of tasty craft beers on tap, a friendly owner-chef who speaks English and loves a good chinwag, and outdoor seating for when the weather perks up, there’s more to El Pato than just a brazenly delicious lamb burger. But carnivores out there should probably taste it before they agree. The woolly quadruped, rarely found in Japan outside jingiskan joints, is here served up in thick, juicy squares of grilled meat, on a substantial foccaccia-like bun (¥1350). If you’ve been hankering for the bleating meat it doesn’t get much better than this. Bovine boffins can also order up the sirloin roast beef, though ask the chef to give it a flash in the pan if you don’t like your flesh quasi-raw. Vegetarian recipes include some of the homemade pasta dishes (from ¥1,100)—and you can even witness the chef rolling the strands out of his colorful pasta maker by hand. Various salads (from ¥600) and appetizers such as the show-stopping roasted fig with Gorgonzola are just a couple more picks from a stunning menu.

2-22-10 Koenjikita. Tel: 03-6795-7888. http://elpato.jp

best coffee & cake

Coffee Amp

Courtesy of Coffee Amp

On your left as you walk down the eclectic southern-side shotengai, just a minute before reaching Omekaido avenue and Shin Koenji station, sits this charming little café, fronted by a small wooden deck and a slightly surreal patch of grass. The interior design is post-industrial chic, and the few chairs and stools are spare but comfortable enough to sit and inhale the incredible aromas of the house-roasted coffee. A superlative macchiato can be had for ¥350, and the unmatched cheesecake (¥300) will get your blood sugar pumping along with Coffee Amp’s generally old-school funk soundtrack. Choose from the various beans on offer and take away a bag, ground to order (from ¥790/200g).

2-20-13 Koenji-minami, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-5929-9587. www.coffee-amp.com

best burger

Bake Crowns Café

Slip on your wingtips and glitzy waistcoat and slink into the Prohibition-era style Bake Crowns Café, where the burgers are as big as the task facing Elliot Ness and his “Untouchables.” Slide onto one of their roomy leather couches on the ground floor and tuck into the old Japanese ba-ga favorite of avocado and cheese (¥780 regular; ¥1,460 jumbo). The buns are stiff floury-bap-style and the burger sauce is tasty without being sickly and overpowering. Jumbo is genuinely jumbo. Another one to try is the spicy-beef sandwich (¥1,050), with salmon and cream cheese (¥690) on the menu for the non-meat eaters, ELT (¥850) for the non-vegans, and various salads, soups and desserts to round it off. If they’re playing their CD of Beatles covers, tell them we said to change it. Hoegarden on tap (¥780).

104 Baoshan Bldg, 4-21-11 Koenji-minami. Tel: 03-6768-5539. http://bcc.kssj.jp

best weirdness

Hattifnatt

Become a forest elf in the woody weirdness of this tall, narrow structure, where the only things stranger than the toadstool-like desserts and creepy face-cakes are the childlike daubings on the dimly lit walls. This otaku node is a hippy maid café without maids, and without any obese customers, owing to the diminutive size of the door. Main courses are surprisingly earthy and substantial, with various bakes clocking in at just under ¥1,000. A complex key system in the cocktail menu will entertain you for hours before you get stumped and order a nama biru (¥525). Various art and music events are held in the space—check their site for details, or just turn up and try not to trip out.

2-18-10 Koenjikita, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-6762-8122. www.hattifnatt.jp

best vegan

Meu Nota

Black bean hummus (¥520). Courtesy of Meu Nota

With a wide selection of vegan dishes all prepared with love and creativity, this self-styled “vege & grain café” provides a living room-like setting lined with books, dangling pots, green leaves, and musical instruments. One of the landmark dishes is the fresh, tasty taco rice (¥1,000/half ¥650), and today’s soup (¥400) is always a good bet, though the menu is flush with pastas, donbori, and much more. Quaff a coffee certified by Rainforest Alliance (¥480), detox with a green smoothie (¥700), sip on organic wine (¥480/glass), or give yourself a healing winter boost with the wonderful homemade ginger tea (¥580). Check their site for details of art happenings and music events.

2F, 3-45-11 Koenji-minami, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-5929-9422. http://meunota.com

best bar

Koenji Beer Kobo

Craft-beer purists might find the proverbial hair in the home-brewed jibiru at Kobo, but they’ll not be able to fault the atmosphere at this woody shack o’ love. The three or so ales which are literally cooked up out back are usually fair enough—as are a few externally-sourced options—especially when they come as cheap as ¥350/glass. Bar food includes doorstops of bacon (¥550) that you cook on your own little Bunsen burner, fish ’n’ chips (¥650), and more, and the relatively spacious interior is like your dad’s shed or your mother’s sukkah—with sacks of hops lying around to give a good ole bumpkin feel to the place. Keep quaffing and you’ll no doubt get a chance to witness the bizarre bathroom.

2-24-8 Koenjikita, Suginami-ku. Tel: 03-5373-5301.

Map of locations here:


View 980 LF Koenji roundup in a larger map


Don’t agree? Chip in with your own tips in the comments below.

Feb 1, 2013
rebecca

Izmir

Izmir

Riding up the escalator in a small, nondescript shotengai just north of JR Asagaya station, you’d never imagine you were about to enter a haven of home-cooked Turkish cuisine. We entered the softly lit space, and chose the counter in front of the workstation of chef Elif (pictured).

Charming waiter Sali brought us two glasses of Efes Pilsner, a Turkish standard—elegant and dry, but with a slightly sweet aftertaste (¥630)—as we perused the menu. Other drinks include Sapporo on tap, Turkish wine by the glass (¥525) as well as a few Turkish, French and Chilean selections by the bottle (¥3,150-8,400). For those who don’t imbibe, the salty yogurt drink ayran is one to try among the usual soft drinks.

Elif was happy to talk us through the dishes in her charming English, with occasional translation help from the fluent Sali. We went for the chef’s special course, which is priced and sized according to your preference. Set courses are available, and solo diners can request a daily special sampler of appetizers and meat dishes for ¥2,415. Otherwise, choose à la carte from the well-explained English menu with photos.

First to arrive was the assorted appetizer plate (¥1,365 small; ¥2,520 large; pictured). This is a scrumptious selection of homemade Homemade Turkish dipsTurkish dips such as hummus; patlican ezme, or Turkish babaganoush; and the excellently tart avuc tarama (seasoned carrots and yogurt). Included for mopping up this tasty kaleidoscope was the addictive, freshly baked flatbread ekmek, which Elif warned us to go easy on­—to save room for later. Not easy, but we did our best.

Next up was akdeniz salatasi, a rich, herb-dusted salad including tomato, cucumber, and salty feta—plus the surprising bonus of chopped pickles (¥945). Then came domates dolma: roasted tomatoes stuffed with rice and pine nuts (¥840), excellent with a squeeze of fresh lemon. The term “Turkish pizza”—used in the menu—doesn’t do justice to lachmacun, the country’s baked dough discs topped with spicy meat sauce. As a nice twist, Izmir serves its version with fresh arugula leaves and sliced tomato, which you lay on the lachmacun with a squeeze of lemon, roll up and get crunching.

We were lucky enough to witness Elif methodically construct a giant spindle of meat for her doner kebabs. She chatted to us as she patiently trimmed wafer-thin slices of meat and piled hundreds, one by one, onto the giant metal skewer. She inserted the occasional layer of fat, which was probably the reason why the kebab we ordered was so divinely moist. Our dish was the iskender kebab—succulent shaved meat swamped with a piquant mixture of yogurt and wonderfully rich tomato sauce, and layered with chunks of toasted flat bread (¥2,100). Unforgettable. This is just one of the various grilled meat dishes on offer, but sadly we were physically unable to try more.

Stewed dishes populate the menu too, such as the standout manti (Turkish dumplings)—bite-sized lamb-stuffed ravioli served with yogurt, a hint of garlic and a mouth-watering paprika-butter sauce (¥1,785).

To wind down, we sipped a glass of famous Turkish tipple raki, made from grape and flavored with aniseed. Our stomachs recovered enough to try the dessert of the day—the stretchy ice cream dondurma, homemade and topped with a sprinkling of walnuts (¥630). Finally, a glass of strong cay tea was a refreshing counterpoint to the sweetness.

The flavors encountered at Izmir are hard to find elsewhere in Tokyo, and the quality of the home cooking, combined with the chef’s maternal presence, will definitely see us going back for some more Turkish-style comfort food.

Dec 10, 2012
Ben

Truffles: Piggish antics in Aoyama

Thrust your porcine snout into the turf and root your way over to Minami Aoyama, to greet the second coming of the truffle train. Having moved from Roppongi, the Nice-based Terres de Truffes opens doors December 7 (book from November 21) in a cozier location with an expanded menu. New à la carte items (from ¥2,800) include the signature truffle-steamed rice, and a host of other titillating treats riffing on the sought-after fungus. Lunch set menus range from ¥2,800-7,800, while a set dinner goes for ¥15,000. Punters can also buy fresh truffles and bottles of truffle oil for piggish antics back home.

Terres de Truffes Website


View Larger Map
(2-27-6 Minami Aoyama, Minato-ku)

Nov 29, 2012
Ben

Bar Genco: Prohibition-era moonshine. Well, JD

A new collaboration between Cosa Nostra group and Jack Daniels reeks of prohibition era moonshine—but this one is all above board. The new Bar Genco (1-4-1 Ebisu Nishi, Shibuya-ku; http://cosanostra.co.jp) near Ebisu station provides all manner of cocktails made from—you guessed it—Jack Daniels Tennessee whiskey. Sit among their calm décor of black leather and red walls and sip libations like JD with fresh strawberry juice. Mafiosi in search of a simple life can order up their whiskey straight or on the rocks (¥700), while the more dapper dons can go for Gentleman Jack (¥900) or JD Single Barrel (¥1,200). The menu is suitably sour mashed with finger lickers like JD BBQ sauce-slathered roast-chicken salad (¥900), spare ribs (2-8 pieces, ¥600-¥2,400), and the JD burger (¥1,200).

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