Monday, April 28, 2014

Trattoria RYUDO, Roppongi (トラットリア リュウド)

My opinion of Roppongi dining isn't great. You say 'Roppongi', I think 'bad cost performance'. This place is the exception that proves the rule, as I like to say. Straight-up great cooking at great prices, only a few minutes from Nogizaka station or Roppongi crossing, at the end of a quiet street. Perfect.

The maitre d' used to be the chef, so he's probably the owner, or at least the manager. He changed jobs when he fired everyone else, redecorated, and changed the menu a few months ago. The funny thing about all that is, it worked. The place was full on a Monday night (albeit the night before a holiday) with groups of 20-somethings as well as our little table of older folks. Nice atmosphere, right? If you look at the web site, you'll get the feeling it's one of those fusty, mid-quality places. The redecor includes artful B&W photos of Italy and jazz background music, so you know it's supposed to be a clean and stylish update.

The menu has a bunch of courses at very accessible prices as well as ample small plates for sharing. I'd really recommend getting a mixed appetizer. Just looking at this is making me grateful I got to eat it - house-cured salmon, delicious fresh cheese that tasted awfully like it was buffalo-derived, great olives, delicious salami...this is what Italian food and fresh ingredients are supposed to be all about.
Bringing your own wine for Y2k a bottle is also what it's all about. Champagne and Burgundy. Good stuff, thanks!
Being a casual meal, I just had some casual ravioli. They do a ravioli of the day, which might often be this long-form thinger stuffed with cheese and pork, topped with creamy sauce, a little tomato, and a fried sage leaf. There was also a meat tagliatelle on the table that looked good.
But nothing looked as good as the black veal! Carbonized morsels? Chunks coated in squid-ink breadcrumbs and pan-fried. This was wonderful, and I confirm the calves didn't die in vain.
Although it IS confronting, isn't it?
Things filled up pretty quickly after we got there, and if it wasn't heaving when we left, it was decidedly full and buzzy. Good for all ages.
Especially good for 44 year olds at home as a nightcap, thanks again! Must be nice to live right around the corner.
As I suspect is true of many nights in Roppongi for kids of all ages, time went by quickly, and I was late to get back on the train before I knew it. One note for kids of various ages, you should get your nails redone once they've grown out this much. It impedes Candy Crush play.

Hard to impress your neighbors that way. 
050-5872-3036 is the reservation number.


  1. Currently Shin Yurigaoka. Everyone's been plagued with sickness, so we haven't had nearly as much fun as hoped (evidence notwithstanding).