Monday, November 3, 2008

Marugo, Shinjuku

Shinjuku sanchome is a little odd. Some standing bars, some general washoku places, one really nice-looking Italian place that was full (boooooo!!!) and a TON of wine bars! That's just not what I expect in a reputed salaryman hangout.

Marugo may be cleverly named after Margaux; it wasn't obvious to me until I read another review and it mentioned their special 'Margaux nights'. We visited the second branch, which has a dramatic wine cellar along the side and back wall - picture something curved and just wide enough for a rack of wine and a person standing sideways. Staff have to inch their way along, and there's no question of more than one person being in at any one time. This cellar is stuffed with expensive name wines from all regions (ok, it's just one or two bottles of each, but it's cool).

Since I presume you won't be lashing out on multi-hundred-dollar wines at a casual small-plate after-work French/Italian bar-stool sort of place, you'll want to know about the glass wines. There were 15 or 16, ranging in price from Y500 to Y1500 (I love cheap and interesting, don't you?). We got through 4 or 5 different things, and found them generally good - for more detail you'll have to go and check it out for yourself. The list was on blackboards or photocopied sheets, so I suspect it changes often. And if you want a bottle of Lafitte or Krug, it's there too.

Food-wise, this was your basic casual small-plate after-work French/Italian bar-stool sort of place (is there an echo in here?). Bagna cauda was creamy and tasty, but not overly distinguished (or even that recognizable as bagna cauda to the more informed members of our table). Store-made roasted chorizo was good - not too spicy, and with big chunks of fat still in, but tasty and served with some lemon and rucola (yes, that's 'rocket', you crazy Southern Hemispherians). Mushroom pasta was good without being too...well, distinguished. In short, this was your basic casual small-plate after-work French/Italian bar-stool sort of place, and the big list of glass wines is a fun bonus.

Maru and Maru and Maru we go...
03-3350-4605

No comments:

Post a Comment