One of our three favourite hotels to stay at in Tokyo is the Conrad Hotel in Shiodome. Located an easy 10 minute walk to the shopping mecca of Ginza, it has easy access to three train lines that will get you anywhere you want to visit in Tokyo.
This trip we were able to get an upgrade to a bay view suite, which gave us views over Hama Rikyu Onshi Tien, the Sumida River and Tokyo Bay.
The suite was amazing, so much room. You often hear complaints about the size of rooms in Asian hotels, but this was larger than some we have stayed in in western countries.
Table setting, Kazahana.
Detail of chopstick rest.
A nice cold glass of green tea.
Appetizer of Taro stem, okra, uni, seaweed sauce.
Clear broth, tofu skin, shrimp dumpling.
Pike conger, tofu and eggplant(braised dish).
Octopus and radish.
Sashimi of squid and sea bream.
Chilled soba noodles.
Tempura prawns and vegetables, rice topped with dried purple shiso leaf, pickles and miso soup.
Japanese black sugar cake, caramelized banana and watermelon with green tea.
Seriously developing a ceramics addiction. So many great pieces of ceramics used in restaurants. Need a bigger kitchen so I can go on a ceramics buying spree. Green tea to finish a great lunch.
After lunch we were in need of a lie down, which we followed with a swim in the amazing pool on the 29th floor, watching the office workers finish their day.
We can highly recommend the Conrad Hotel, great service, great staff, great rooms and fantastic location.
A trip up to the Hunter Valley wine district saw us stop in to Lake’s Folly for a taste of the latest releases. We had not tried two of the wines from the current vintage, Hill Block Chardonnay and the 3 Estates Red. Very good to taste them as they are on our ‘to order list”.After a good chat about the wines and things in general it was time to head off for lunch.
We went to one of our favourites, Restaurant Muse, located in the Hungerford Hill cellar door building.
We were quite surprised to be able to get a table as last time we tried the restaurant was full.
Lunch is now a two course minimum, which was fine by us. After ordering a glass of wine each (thank goodness for by the glass), we decided on our meals.
A wooden bowl filled with salt and spices arrived at our table with our amuse, mushroom macarons and pork crackling. Savoury macarons are a tasty start to a meal.
Mr. CA4G and I both had the pan fried sea scallops, chorizo, spring peas and beans, Andrew Thomas Verjus. Very delicious, chorizo was house made and the spiciness went well with the sweetness of the scallops. The verjus was gelled and the peas pureed. A lovely light start to our meal.
A palate cleanser of whey granita and lemon foam was bought between the entrée and main. Very interesting and refreshing.
For mains Mr. CA4G chose slow cooked Berkshire pork, cumquat, pearl barley and roasted onion. Very elegant and simply presented. The cumquat puree was amazing against the pork.
I opted for the Milly Hill lamb, served pink, black garlic polenta, leek and jus. The lamb was nice and tender and the whole dish very tasty. The black garlic added to the polenta gave it a nice dark, earthy colour. the leek was served roasted and slightly caramelised and also as a crisp julienne garnish.
Not feeling like dessert, we instead had the cheese board. A selection of international cheese served with grilled bread and quince paste. The cheeses were Reypenael, Delice, Taleggio and bleu d’Auvergne.
And to fininsh a bit of tree branch was bought out to the table, studded with two skewers of house made toasted marshmallows.
A great lunch after a visit to a great winery is always a nice treat. Thanks to Troy and the team for another fabulous lunch!
One restaurant we have been wanting to try since our first visit to Tokyo is L’Osier. Unfortunatley the past two visits we missed out as it was undergoing a massive refurbishment, and last year it reopened 2 weeks after we returned home. But this year we made it!
Owned by Shiseido group, L’Osier is an elegant French restaurant located in the back streets of Ginza, within the Shiseido Building. A doorman greets you as you enter and a receptionist seats you in the waiting room before you are escorted downstairs to the restaurant by one of the maître d’s. There is dress code, so Mr CA4G had to wear a jacket. No shorts, no thongs etc. Most of the diners were elegant ladies who lunch, out for a catch up with the girls.
The circular dining room is decorated in creams and shades of yellow, medium coloured woods and lots of silver and gold tones. A central round banquette, under the enormous chandelier, seats several tables for groups of two to four people, one segment of the room has tables for two and the other has tables for 4 or 6. A private room for larger groups is also available.
The service is truly impressive. I think there were about a dozen waiters plus 4 maitre d’s and a couple of food runners, and there may only have been about 30 – 40 patrons. Plates were bought out on trays by the runners and then served from the trays by the waiters. Crisp white linens, beautiful porcelain tableware, lots of silver plate and gorgeous crystal. Shiseido has spared no expense.
Unfortunately we were unable to take any other photos as they have a strict no photography rule.
We ordered a very fancy French mineral water called Chateldon, which has a very illustrious history. The story goes that this water was carted from the village of Châteldon in the Puy-de-Dôme region of the Auvergne to the court of Louis XIV, where he not only drank it but used it for bathing. They have a very small production and it is generally available only in high end restaurants and in some pharmacies in France. Price was around AUD$18, and was worth it. Ultra fine bubbles and a nice minerality to it. A shame we can’t get it in Australia.
We decided to have the Prixe Fixe lunch menu which was around AUD$100 per person. This consisted of 3 courses plus amuse bouche, predessert and petit fours and a confectionery trolley with coffee or tea. Great value and the food was amazing. Entree was a poached,chilled lobster half with a tangy gazpacho, main consisted of melt in your mouth pork belly, potatoes done 3 ways,beetroot and greens. Pre dessert was a delicious chilled fruit soup. a small platter of petit fours was also presented before the dessert. Dessert was rhubarb and strawberries, very elegantly presented and absolutely delicious.
Thinking we were at the end of our meal as we ordered our coffee, imagine our surprise when a trolley full of candies, caramels, marshmallows etc was pushed up to our table for us to choose from. All made in house. The marshmallow had a square profile and was wound into a large jar from whence it was cut as needed. Willy Wonka would have been jealous of the amazingly interesting flavours. At first we were going to pass, but curiousity got the better of us.
After our wonderful lunch, we practically waddled back to our hotel where we had a nap and a swim to work off the sugar hit.
If you get to Tokyo, you really should try to make a booking at L’Osier for lunch.