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Mar 27, 2008 05:37 AM

Quintessence, qns on bookings

may be visiting tokyo next yr mid jan.. how many days or weeks or months in advance shld i book Quintessence?? the price hasnt changed much right?? 7,350 yen for lunch. 15,750 yen for dinner. can i speak in english to book ?? my japanese is really elementary..

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  1. I do not know how far out you can book but just call them and English is fine.
    They only answer the phone at certain times and sometimes not then as they might be closed for a random week or have a private event, etc.

    I assume the prices are the same but do not be shocked(especially in 10 months) if they are increased.

    Good luck

    3 Replies
    1. re: trueopinion

      They ONLY accept phone reservations - and are currently booked solid for the next 4 months - so try as soon as you can.
      Currently, they don't even seem to be answering the phone anyway - the Michelin recommendation has sort of overwhelmed them.
      Good luck.

      1. re: estufarian

        hi estufarian, i called the other number(the one that answers the questions, and change of appt) for this restaurant, he told me that i am only allowed to make reservations juz 2 months in advance exact. so is ur info true that they have 4 month waiting list???

        1. re: Lucil

          The info was given face-to-face to my contact who actually visited after getting no reply for 7 days in a row.
          And would a restaurant ever lie to a non-Japanese who tried to make a reservation?

          By coincidence, when I was at Ryugin, I spoke to another guest who was visiting ALL the Japanese 3* Michelin places (this was in May). I asked specifically how he got into Quintessence (given my experience) and he told me that a Japanese local had made the reservation for him in December 2007 i.e. 5 months ahead!

      1. re: Lucil

        juz a question, how do restaurants usually reconfirm the booking with you? wad kind of details do they usually take down?

        1. re: Lucil

          Name, # of people, phone #, date and time

          Seems to be it when I make reservations.

      2. Any recent experiences on booking Quintessence? Is it still several months advance notice, or is it 2 months?

        Another question, on their website they say

        "Lunch 12:00p.m.- 3:00p.m. (L.O.1:00p.m.)"

        Is that correct? It seems strange that last order would be an hour after opening, when they don't close for another two hours after last order.

        7 Replies
        1. re: prasantrin

          Hey Prasantrin,

          The Michelin guide lists their last lunch order at 1:30 p.m. A little roomier, but still a little tight.

          1. re: prasantrin

            Also, I've been doing a fair amount of research for my November trip and found that the reviews for Quitessence range from rave to a few underwhelmed. No out and out bad reviews, but certainly a few disappointed diners. I'd love to judge for myself but, ultimately, if I'm unable to book a table 3 months out, I won't be too broken up given the wealth of fantastic restaurants out there.

            1. re: BaronDestructo

              its a 2 month waiting list.. try and call at their opening time.. keep redialing.. gd luck

              1. re: BaronDestructo

                I'm thinking of L'Osier as my first choice, but Quintenssence is in the running, too. I'm not planning on going to Tokyo again until January, and then in March for the last time, so I've got plenty of time to figure to make reservations. I'm still hoping to get Aronia, but that wouldn't be until March (the only time I'd be with another person to meet the two-person minimum reservation).

                Have you posted your other options elsewhere? I like to glean from other people's lists.

                1. re: prasantrin

                  I went to L'Osier the last time I was in Tokyo and aboslutely loved it. Granted, your mileage may vary, but I had a wonderful time and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it.

                  My all-too brief write-up here:

                  1. re: BaronDestructo

                    I know this is not a consensus view but I actually prefer Quintessence to L'Osier. I can understand it is not easy to appreciate Q; the chef has his own style. I actually did not like his dishes at first bites but the more I taste them, the more I appreciate and end up loving this place at the end of the meal.

                    1. re: FourSeasons

                      Well, hopefully I'll be in a position to agree and/or berate your choice come December.

            2. Finallyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy.. after dial for 6 months.. ( actually about 30 times in Feb and again this month.. ) I can get through an always busy line of Quin. ( Almost cry when the line can get through.. )
              Just to find out that they are fully booked. Not a surprised though..
              Well.. since the waiting list is just only 2 ppl. ahead of me.. I think I still have a good chance.

              Special thanks to Lucil for dialling tips.. *Wink~*

              BTW, Luch for 2 still available on the 20th of September.
              Good luck.

              6 Replies
              1. re: CPMK

                Hunh. Weird. So I finalized my restaurant list for November-December and sent them The Peninsula's way, knowing full well that while many aren't taking reservations this far in advance, a few not only are but require them.

                So, the concierge got me to me and told me as much. Chez Matsuo, Cikuyotei, Dai San Harumi, Ginza La Tour, and Kadowaki are taking reservations now, and I'm booked.

                However, as for the other restaurants, many don't begin taking reservations until October or even November, among them Quintessence (October). How can this be if others on this forum have reported trying to reserve 3 months in advance and being told they're already full booked?

                Some of the other restaurants not taking reservations until October include: Ristorante Aso, Monnalisa Marunouchi, La Rochelle Shibuya, Ryugin, Yonemura, Yamada Chikara, and Sawada.


                1. re: BaronDestructo

                  quintessense takes reservations 2 months prior, aroma fresca 3 months, ryugin 2 months ( u can actually make reservations yourself on their website)

                  1. re: Lucil

                    Lucil is correct. Just another warning on Sawada; it is a bit tricky for first time visitor, at least based on my experience. Sawada only occupies 6 or 7 persons, and very expensive, so he is rather reluctant to accept new comers. I have some difficulty the first time booking there, and eventually the hotel (on my behalf) has to guaranty to him that full amount will be charged if we failed to attend. (And I happen to stay at Pennisula on that occasion) I did not have such problem the second time so I assume he just made things difficult for first time visitors.

                    1. re: FourSeasons

                      I'll be staying at The Peninsula as well. It's where I stayed the last time I visited and they made my restaurant reservations for me back then. I contacted them this time to let them know I was a guest and I was looking to make reservations. They responded: "It is our honor to greet you again. We clearly remember you. How are you? We remember from last year, you have experienced nice cuisine like Ukaitei, Mizutani, Ryugin, Morimoto XEX, Sushi Kanesaka, Joel Robuchon." I was surprised that they would keep this info in their database on the off-chance I stayed with them again. Very thorough.

                      1. re: BaronDestructo

                        Peninsula's concierge is first class, no doubt about that. Somehow, the top hotels in Tokyo, where I have stayed at Grand Hyatt and Ritz Carlton as well, simply have perfect concierge service. Every email is responded on the same day. They will remember those reservation that you will need to make months later. And they will prepare the confirmation latter and maps accompanied when you check in. The meticulous level is simply incredible.

                    2. re: Lucil

                      Ryugin starts taking reservations for a month on the 1st of the preceding month. For example, whether you want to dine there November 1 or 31st, you can't make reservations until October 1st.