In our last night in Hong Kong we were strolling around the Mid Level Escalator area. We must have walked around an hour and a half looking for a place to eat. You see, it’s not that there’s nowhere to eat in the Mid Level Escalator area; It is, in fact, full of restaurants and bars! It’s just that we were in the mood for a cozy and quiet place but every spot that seemed decent was just too crowded and noisy.
During March we were lucky enough to spend a few days in New York City. Four days in the city necessitated some preparations which included a map of dozens of interesting locations. Obviously we weren’t able to visit all of them. Not always because lack of time but rather the fact that some places had insane 5 (!) hour queue at the door (we’re looking at you Black Tap and The Bagel Store). Nonetheless we’ll be sharing our experiences in several separate posts: this one for savory food, and the following ones for sweets as well as our visit at the 2 Michelin starred Atera restaurant.
Dining at Zauo restaurant can be frustrating at times, but not for the reasons you may think. Zauo is a restaurant like no other. Before eating the food here, you actually have to catch it. Well, no one is really forcing you into it, but it’s part of the fun. It’s also somewhat frustrating if you are not a ninja fishing master Japanese kid. As they specify in their instructions – “If you eat fish, You had better fishing than you order from the menu. Please challenge by all means”. Whatever that means.
To be honest, we were hesitant about making a reservation to Ninja Akasaka, a ninja themed restaurant that claims to recreate the “mysterious art of ninjas”. Most of the themed restaurant put effort into decor, branding (which was wonderfully done by this video production unit), atmosphere, and often times it comes on the expense of the food. After researching online and reading many posts and reviews, raving about the food, we decided to go for it.
Miazaki is perhaps the most anticipated food project in Shuk Tzafon (North Market). Miazaki is Yuval Ben Neriah’s (of Taizu fame) interpretation on a Japanese “Izakaya”. Traditionally Japanese Izakayas are a combination of a Japanese grill bar and a gastropub where food is served to accompany the drinks. The food being in the form of small dishes to be snacked while drinking. I think that in that sense the experience in Miazaki is far from the source. Not only are they focused on food rather than drinks, the bar chairs were bolted together so you couldn’t sit there. The only option is to pick up your lunch tray and go to find a table in one of Shuk Tzafon’s seating courts, which while being indoors provide little insulation from the cold. In addition, the experience of eating outside is not very pleasant – the indoor balcony is very crowded and the wooden floor decks transmit every vibration or movement caused by people walking or dragging chairs directly into your spine.
Ukai-tei is one of the 3 Michelin starred restaurant we visited in Tokyo, and was the only one that served lunch. Lunch service is usually less expensive than diner service, so opting for lunch allows us to experience more high end restaurants in our travels. So whenever there’s an option for a lunch meal, we’ll prefer it.
This restaurant is part of a chain in Japan, that specializes in Teppanyaki – Japanese cuisine that makes use of an iron griddle to cook food. We reserved our seats for the Omotesando branch, which is located at the top floor of the Chanel building in Harajuku.
It was really hard for me to start writing about our evening at Den. We had such high expectations before arriving here, but nothing could really prepare us for this mind-blowing, mouth-watering, once in a life time experience.
Tensuke Tempura was one of the few places about which I didn’t really inquire much before going. On one of my last days in Tokyo, I visited Koenji, a nice quiet neighborhood, not far from Shinjuku. The neighborhood is packed with vintage and second hand clothing stores and quirky little shops. Knowing I have only a few days left and that I haven’t yet had a proper tempura meal, I was on the lookout for a great authentic tempura place in Koenji. There’s not a lot of information online in English about this place, but even the little I read made me feel like this place is worth a visit. Read More