Eccentric three days in Tokyo
I've been reading this board for some time and it had allowed me to try Ruygin before the hype, Kanda, Mizutani, Sawada... Going back to Tokyo for three nights in early August (yes it will be hot), and looking for advice. I will be on my own, on a mini vacation.
Budget is currently wide open, but there are two constraints: my jet lag will be Tokyo -7hrs, which means late nights, and sleep in the morning; also I'd like this to be fun, not a food marathon.
Lots of gaps in my plan - please advice!
Arrival Narita 5pm
Diner at Quintessence (solo ok?)
Drinks at Star Bar
2pm breakfast at Hidemo Sugino :)
5pm Sushi Saito
trip to Onsen Oedo on Odaiba island
Late dinner: where? Open to suggestions
2pm light lunch. Which Sushi place will serve at 2pm?
Diner at Aronia (solo ok? I've read contradicting info)
Blue Note jazz club
Maybe a quick yakitori stop before calling it a day. Where?
Day four (will be a Sunday)
Flea market Hashimangu
Early diner. Where on a Sunday?
Will have to leave for Narita at 7pm
i believe for hidemi sugino you have to get there by 9:30am to stand in line, or they will be all sold out. budget 2 hours of your time -- waiting 30 mins for them to open, waiting 30 mins to order. waiting 30 mins for them to bring your cake to your table. 15 mins for you to eat.
not worth it, at least for me (but i'm very impatient.)
also, try some high end tempura.
For Hidemi Sugino I don't believe it's that bad. If you want the full selection, then yes it is best to go early and wait in that godawful line. If you go late, obviously you run the risk of them selling out or having an extremely limited selection, but if they still have cakes then there is no wait time. The last time I went, it was 1pm and I was able to immediately order, sit and eat. In and out in under 30 minutes. But yeah, if you go late it will be hit or miss. Have a backup selection ready just in case.
i was there at 5pm on a saturday last month. there were still cakes, but a very limited selection.
side note: you can queue up in the morning, reserve cakes, and come back in the afternoon to have them for tea. i found that out because i saw people being served cakes that were not on display, so i asked the waitstaff what was going on.
Hidemi Sugino only puts out half the stock in the morning, then replenishes it in the afternoon (I thought at 2:00, but I could be wrong). That way people in the afternoon can still have cake (otherwise they would probably sell out completely by noon).
At least it used to be that way. See http://tokyofood.blog128.fc2.com/blog... for reference (written in 2011, so relatively current).
When I last went, I got there around 20 minutes early and was able to get into the store with the first round of customers (I think I was #10 or so in line). By 10 minutes to opening, there were maybe 20-30 people in line. From past experience, had I arrived 30 minutes early on a weekend, I probably would have been #20.
I was in hidemi three days ago(Wednesday) at 4.30pm, they were completely sold out.
Went again yeaterday(fri) at 11.30am, no queue, there was the full range as far as I could tell. Maybe I'm not a cake/pastry person, but I don't think it's worth the queue. I preferred his berry tart,Belle jardiniere, over the ambroisie. I don't know if that's blasphemy to hidemi fans
ah, i understand. what about the cakes at a tes souhait, or plaisir? i was at the latter this trip, and thought their "comparison" was pretty good. i liked the gateau vanille at paris s'eveille too; a firmer mousse (but not more gelatin-ny).
can't wait for my trip back to tokyo in dec. gonna hit more cake shops!
Sorry got carried away typing last time re: Urusawa
New program for the three days:
Tempura Mikawa (sp?)
Any recommendations near Singawa flea market. Great ramen would be fine !
Aronia de Takazawa
Recommendations, additions, deletions? I chose Mikawa from a previous post instead of 7 Chome because of the huge price difference. Anyone thinks its a mistake? The only high end tempura I've been to is Ten Ichi (both original location and others). Was fine, but does not qualify as fine dining in my book.
OK I`ll reply to my own question- I checked out Hachi after mr Redzepi`s and Bourdain`s recommendations. It was very, very good. Very busy, we sat at the bar but that was ok because the chef/owner was a friendly guy and showed us some of the produce he was preparing and his knives too. There was no english menu but there is one online (Gurunavi?) so we got that up on the iPhone and were able to order all the famous dishes, plus there was an english speaking waiter who was very helpful and recommended a few other dishes. We had the clay pot rice, fatty mackerel (dried overnight) this was probably my favourite, pork in ginger sauce (another good one), sashimi of the day, tempura veg (just ok), ham omelette with soup (weird dish, was not bad) and the 8-vegetable salad. They also helped us choose some nihon-shu too which were great, from Niigata I think. It was very busy and pretty rowdy crowd, good place to come and have some really top-notch food with your alcohol. And friendly service too. Bill came to 11,000yen.