Takazawa has yet to gain any Michelin stars however don’t let that discourage you from making a booking. Just from looking at their photo gallery on their website, I knew that we were in for something quite special on Day 3 of the Ultimate Tokyo Food Tour. Takazawa is a French Japanese fusion restaurant that is run by chef Yosiaki Takazawa and his wife Akiko who looks after the front of house. When it initially opened in 2005 there were only 2 tables available, now the restaurant seats a maximum of 10 people hence why it’s extremely difficult to get a reservation.
What I loved about the set up of Takazawa was that there was a silver counter at the back of the restaurant so you could see everything that the chef was cooking and preparing. It also meant that the chef was able to come over and interact with guests, which is a very rare occurence in most restaurants. Takazawa was able to recommend which wines would go well with each course and at the end he was chatting to us while helping his staff clean up, he was the one drying the dishes!
At the start of the menu are the words “ENJOY YOUR IMAGINATION”, I was unsure what this meant at first however as the first dishes started to arrive it all became clear. Chef Takazawa’s imagination is so creative which shows in each of his dishes through presentation and flavour. Each course felt like I was eating pieces of art. I also got a sense that Takazawa has a love of nature from the flowers arranged around the walls of the restaurant to the freshly picked vegies on the day and themes used in his presentation.
To start we had wagyu beef and then the above little balls, which I thought were beans at first, was actually soup!
Salmon roe in a cracker was brought to the table in a cloud of smoke, this gave it a kind of bbq flavour.
The first course on the menu was Takazawa’s signature dish, Ratatouille. This is not ratatouille as you know it though. Out from the kitchen came a colourful grid of vegies on a spoon which looked like more of a sculpture than an eating tool. The best way to eat this was whole and once I bit down into it my mouth was filled with the most amazing flavours from the 15 different vegies used in this dish. I could see why this has been on the menu since opening in 2005, I could’ve easily had another one!
Second course was titled ‘Modern Sashimi’ as you can see from the photo above and below this was definitely a modern take on the traditional Japanese dish. The best way to eat it was line by line, so you’d scoop up the fish with the wasabi, ginger, radish and soy sauce – delicious!
Next was ‘Scallop Spaghetti’ where the spaghetti was made of scallops! This was topped with uni.
This dish was called ‘Yakitori….With Egg Yolk?’. It’s a modern version of yakitori. The egg yolk is the little round ball which was nice and runny.
The ‘World Heritage’ course was one of my favourites, so beautifully presented and the vegies had been picked from the garden that day so they were fresh. The dish symbolises Mount Fuji erupting.
The sixth course was ‘White Truffle’. An egg was brought out on a hot stone slab. We were all kind of like ok what’s so special about an egg but then Chef Takazawa came out from the kitchen and then proceeded to shave truffles on each of our eggs – BOOM!
The fish dish was called ‘A Moon Viewing’. The presentation made it seem like you were looking at a golden moon. The yellow leaves on the plate were edible as they were made out of scallops, so clever.
The last main course was ‘Memory of Tokachi’ which I think from memory was in reference to Mountain Tokachi in Hokkaido. The meat used was veal which was delicious and tender.
Now for dessert, first up was ‘Fanta Grape’. These were grapes filled with carbonated soda, they were fizzing when they got to the table. They were a great palette cleanser to move from the final heavy course previously to dessert, it somehow managed to make room in my tummy for the final dessert dish. Having the soda in the grapes meant that they burst with flavour in your mouth, I wish I’d had a few more of these, they were so yummy!
Next was ‘Takazawa’s Special Camembert’. When this arrived I was wondering how I was going to eat a whole block of cheese on its own however nothing is quite as it seems at Takazawa. This was actually cheesecake!
To finish I had Green Tea which was served with petit fours below.
Thank you Chef Takazawa and Akiko for a wonderful evening!