Night 1 dinner
Made reservations at the most well known, 1 Michelin star tempura restaurant Kondo 90 days in advance. I decided to cancel it in favor of the lesser known Seiju after getting a tip from a Toyko businessman who said the ingredients are better at Seiju and that at Kondo you’re more likely to be seated in front of an apprentice than with the head chef.
Seiju is a one man show and the chef trained at the very famous Raku Tei. Dinner was amazing and easily the best tempura I’ve ever had. Not cheap at 16,500 JPY pp but also not as absurdly expensive as Tempura Endo LA.
The anago was out of this world amazing as was the mushroom with sweet shrimp.
Service is impeccable. New paper towels were used every 3-4 pieces. We had a lefty in the group and we noticed utensils and dishes placed accordingly. The complexity and flow of each dish and the total dinner was as good as any Michelin 2 star in many of the restaurants in Europe.
Ridiculously good clam soup with large meaty clams
So they give you salt and lemon as dipping and also the tempura dipping sauce with daikon. You were given 2 pieces of everything which I assumed was so you could try one with salt/lemon and one with tempura sauce/daikon. I saw that the other Japanese patrons only used the salt/lemon and actually used the brown dipping sauce to soak the daikon in before eating, sort of as a palate cleanser. In any case, I preferred the tempura with salt and lemon since it allowed flavor of each ingredient to truly shine.
Delicious kuruma ebi x 2
Tempura spring bamboo. So simple with a touch of salt yet such a treat.
Uni wrapped in shisho
Thinly sliced raw squid paired with the roasted fins. Awesome.
Really amazing shiitake and kuruma ebi. They were whole shrimp and not shrimp paste like at some of the places back home. Much more difficult to get whole shrimp to stick and cooked perfectly.
Seaweed with crab
Best anago I have ever had. The skin so crispy it was like anago chicharone.