Monday, 28 August 2006

Especially Esperia

9 Aug 2006

Riddle me this - if you’re a Chevalier de Fromage, and just received your award, what would be the first thing you’d do? Right...you’d race back to your kitchen, hastily throw on an apron, and set to making a dreamy cheese sauce for a salad. Obviously.

This is the unlikely story behind the Kakumei Salad at Esperia in Nishi Azabu. Just how revolutionary the salad might be, I’ll leave to your imagination but this is a restaurant you really should try to visit if you’re interested in first class Northern Italian cooking...and cheese.

In the last few days, I’ve enjoyed the company of some sparkling dinner companions. That’s a joy, and part of why I enjoy this Tokyo life so much. But at Esperia, all we were talking about was the food. For the first time, I asked for the chef’s omakase cheese menu as did 3 of my companions. Wine was plentiful and pleasurable. But the food - for someone just back from Northern Italy, who was expecting to be just a little disappointed by Italian cuisine in Japan, was an immediate trip back to Tarvanelle and the delights of Tuscany.

Food: 8/10, Wine 7/10, Ambience: 7/10, Service: 8/10, Price 7/10Overall: 37/50 (3 Forks)
Esperia: 03-5485-1771. Nishi-Azabu 4-11-25.

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