My lovely wife, who is not a vegetarian, wanted to try Kajitsu's vegan tasting menu for her birthday. I would be a fool to say no!!! Divorces are so costly!!
They offer a 4 course $45 and an 8 course $85 tasting menu along with a Sake pairing for $45.
They also offered a special $100 tasting menu but we both were required to order it. We opted for the eight course. We also ordered a special eggplant and truffle side dish $40. For some reason I don't appreciate the subtlety of truffles but she loved it.
Being a carnivore I wondered how a vegan meal could cost so much but I was willing to go with the experience with an open mind.
The dining room is sparce/simple in the Zen Buddhist style. The only color in the room is a painted Japanese fan on display. Simple but lovely wooden tables.
The service was extraordinary and friendly.
We shared a bottle of Pellegrino, $6, with the meal.
The birthday girl loved each and every dish and commented that the portions were perfect, which they were. There was something I liked in each portion but some tasteless offerings too. I particularly enjoyed the onion soup (cooked for 4 days), vegetable lasagna and the Portobello tempura sushi.
I love Iced tea and they had two choices, barley and green tea. I tried both, very tasty. She had the sake pairing. It was interesting to compare all of the different styles of sake. All pleasant and tasty. They seemed to get stronger as the meal progressed.
All in all a positive and memorable meal. It's a "one and done" for me but she may try it again. She'd get the 4 course next time as she thought the 8 course was too much food.
Two minor "bumps in the road." For such a serene setting the A/C was making a racket. There is no background music to mask the whining of the A/C.
The server presented the check, almost $300 before tip, and took my credit card. She came back a few minutes later and sheepishly apologized because they forgot to charge for the $6 Pellegrino. Being in the retail business it seemed seriously petty to me.
Just got back from my trip to NY and I just wanted to report that my dinner at Kajitsu was wonderful. We didn't notice any A/C sounds and had very good service.
Initally, I had ordered the Hana, 6 courses plus dessert and matcha/candies and my friend had ordered the Kaze, 4 courses. After sampling the first dish, she decided she wanted more, so she asked to switch to the Hana. They accomodated the change with no problem.
The food was beautifully presented and so delicious. We didn't think about meat at all. The dessert was a bit strange: mochi with sweetened edamame paste. It wasn't bad but wasn't a satisfying dessert. I can't single out any specific dish for praise. They were all wonderful. The thin crispy eggplant was a revelation. The eggplant was so crispy and not soft like eggplant usually is. The grilled mochi was such a wonderful texture - chewy and crispy at the same time. Every dish was a wonderful reminder that a vegetarian meal can be as complete and satisfying as a non-vegetarian meal.
As a retailer I devote a huge amount of energy and $$$ to keep current clients satisfied and bringing in new clients.
The best advertising can not be bought. It's called "word of mouth."
The profit on the Pellegrino was probably $4. The bill was close to $300. The amount of "good will" generated by saying to the client: "we made an error but the Pellegrino is on the house" would have far outweighed the $4 and returned much in client referrals.
There is a saying we use: "a happy client will tell 10 people but an unhappy client will tell 50"
Why take that chance for $4? I.M.H.O. "petty."
It was not a deal breaker for me.
I hate when restaurants are jerks about things like the Pellegrino. I've had that have happened to me. Sometimes I wonder if they leave something off to get a bigger tip, but the other night I noticed i wasn't charged for a cocktail and mentioned it to the waitress and she changed the bill and charged me for it. Another time a waiter gave me a glass of wine in error and he fought with me , and told me I ordered it. He wouldn't take it off the bill, so I took it off his tip and never returned.
Thanks for the report. I had recently made a reservation at Kajitsu for my upcoming trip (less than a month now) and was looking for an up-to-date review.
I've wanted to check out Kajitsu for some time now but it just hadn't worked out so far. It's too bad I missed the previous chef, who was supposed to be amazing, but I've read that the new chef is quite good too. I'm glad to hear that you had a generally good experience (except for the water).
I would like to know, is your wife a dainty eater? I'm trying to decide if 4 courses is enough food for us. I would like to do the 8 course but I'm not sure what my companion will want. I don't want to leave hungry.