Thursday, April 21, 2016
With a fortuitous alignment of stars and moon this month, Big Bird and I are both in Tokyo and had a few weeks to awaken the 'romantic Thursday Lunch' tradition we established in 2011.
Requinquer is pretty well-known and highly-regarded, so it's not a hot find or anything, but it was awfully good. The anecdote here is that when Big Bird used to hang out with his dentist friend in Kita Senju, one of the nondescript bars they frequented (next door to this one, same owners) had surprisingly great food. Because they had a surprisingly great chef who was between other things, until he opened Requinquer. It's kind of a big jump from Kita Senju to Shirogane, but he's been open for enough years that it obviously worked.
Oh, they kinda forget to give you the menu too. I think this was maybe a foreigner issue, but we were not allowed to take the menu into our manly paws. In fairness, this is because you can only choose between fish and meat, but then the waiter explained all the dishes to us too, so I dunno.
Further, he explained that the meat was 'chicken', when in fact it was 'quail'. So, you know, read the menu.
Clamingo! It's a big-ass clam (that's the species name), deliciously battered and fried and surrounded with vegetables and salad, delightfully sauced. Meaty clam. Terrific spring flavor. Sauce poured on tableside.
"This tasted as good as it looked"
Madai, nicely cooked in a big piece and sliced for us. Braised spring cabbage. Fried cabbage leaf. Vinegar red cabbage. Some green stalky thing.
And smoked firefly squids! Hands up, who's had that before? Not me. They were smoked on sakura wood, we asked, but had this nifty sweet smokiness that reminded me of nothing more than a burnt marshmallow.
Were I to complain, I would just say this was almost too big, especially the way the body was all ballooned up with the pork mousse. And the value differential between the fish and meat dishes is really wide. But we got both, so no biggie. Or maybe an almost-too-biggie.
Cherry leaf-flavored mousse on top, and jelly underneath, with white bean ice cream and a further layer of green tea mousse. And crunchy bits mixed throughout, so it wasn't just smooth and luxurious. You had to fight and work while enjoying your 5 courses of French lunch.
Kinda like us!