Les Creations de Narisawa Review
I had been wanting to try Les Creations de Narisawa for a few years now, and the restaurant experience certainly lived up to the built up expectation. This was one of the most memorable meals ever due to the ambiance, quality, care, and variety of the courses. I have traveled to Tokyo to try restaurants each year for the past three years, but made it to Narisawa on my third trip because it had been pushed down on my priority list behind sushi and other traditional Japanese cuisines. Initially I was interested in Narisawa after seeing photos of the beautiful presentation, but thought maybe this would be too similar to French style restaurants here in NY. I only wish I had gone to Narisawa on my first trip so I could return and try another tasting menu for a different season.
Narisawa does take reservations on their website, however, when I tried their site for a reservation, a month before my scheduled trip to Tokyo, nothing was available. I asked the concierge at the Park Hyatt hotel to book a reservation for me and they were able to secure a lunch reservation. This was actually the first meal I had scheduled and I took the taxi from the airport to the restaurant. I was worried that the restaurant would be snobby about us bringing our luggage but they graciously held it for us during the meal. I had some trouble in the past at fancy restaurants for not being dressed properly so this time I went prepared in a nice outfit and my husband in a button down shirt and leather shoes instead of sneakers. However when we arrived although most diners were dressed similarly I did see a group dressed very casually with one guest even in shorts and a tshirt.
Initially I thought Narisawa would be like the Eleven Madison Park of Tokyo with their lofty presentation, multi courses, diverse ingredients, and playful spirit. However whereas Narisawa is serene and beautifully elegant, Eleven Madison Park is jaunty and fun. Both restaurants worship the ingredients and try to highlight them in unique ways.
Les Creations de Narisawa
Address: Minami Aoyama 2-6-15, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0062
Lunch: 12:00-13:00 (last order) close 15:00
Dinner: 18:30-20:00 (last order)
Closed on Sunday, Monday
Price: Lunch 21,600 JPY ($210), Dinner 27,000 JPY ($265) (additional 10% service charge)
Michelin Stars: 2
Voyagin is a Japanese travel service that helps make reservations for restaurants and other excursions for your travels in Japan. I highly recommend it!
Narisawa only serves a set menu. You are allowed to choose your last main entree, we were given the choices of pigeon, duck, and A5 Kobe beef. Narisawa recommends trying the A5 Kobe if it is your first time dining there and I highly agree. This was the single best piece of meat I have eating in Japan thus far (more on this later).
Now onto the actual dining experience at Narisawa
I entered the restaurant a nervous mess that I would be late coming directly from the airport, however the hosts were extremely gracious and took our luggage. They then ushered us into this gorgeous serene dining room which really set the tone for the meal. This will be one of my longest posts with the most photos because the meal was so gorgeous I wanted to share as much of it as possible. This post includes photos and video of some dishes. The video really captures the ambiance and serving style I was so mesmerized by.
The seasonal menu. This one shows the duck I opted for the A5 Kobe instead. The servers promptly brought me a new menu with Kobe replacing duck.
The amazing fermented Japanese lime bread. The fermenting dough is brought to your table and rises before your eyes. Once the dough has risen enough, it is placed in a hot stone pot which is surrounded by a beautiful wreath of flowers. The bread cooks in the stone pot for 12 minutes and then is served with butter rolled in some green powder to simulate moss. The taste of the bread was so different from any bread I had tried before. Very earthy and even with some hints of rye? The sweet lime with the earthy rye and whole grains is a spectacular flavor combination. Nothing beats freshly baked hot bread with good butter.
The langoustine dish was one of the most beautiful presentations of a food I have seen. The vibrant colors of the vegetables on top of the langoustine paired with the artful presentation and pouring of the broths was 60 seconds of food pres
The A5 Kobe beef is slowly basted in olive oil for 30min giving it the bright pink center. This was the best piece of meat I tried in Tokyo and quite possibly my favorite beef dish thus far.
Dinner is finished with your choice of coffee or tea. Everything is gorgeous and perfect up until the last moment.
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