Jump to content


Member Since 16 Mar 2004
Offline Last Active Today, 01:22 AM

#1444949 So, where are *you* going next?

Posted by Orik on 06 September 2019 - 04:24 AM

Berlin is really nice when it's not freezing rain and Sivan weeping on the street because of holocaust wall combo. 

#1444913 Juni

Posted by Orik on 05 September 2019 - 02:10 PM


CIM Group and Kushner Co are like sea anemone and clown fish.

#1444862 Who Has a Donabe?

Posted by Orik on 04 September 2019 - 03:17 PM

We have one donabe that´s of a somewhat different style - taller and narrower, something like this:




It is super excellent for beans, but of course useless for induction tops, so we can't really use it here very easily. 


As well as a few other larger ollas, taiwanese earthenware pots, etc. that are more useful for the shop than for home.




It is super excellent for beans, but of course useless for induction tops, so we can't really use it here very easily. 

#1444690 New York Pizza

Posted by Orik on 30 August 2019 - 12:29 PM

That’s funny. I was going to post, in response to your earlier post, that Scarr’s is very much not bereft of stress.


My best advice for Scarr's is if the floor in front of the oven is already well pepperoni-strewn, come another time.

#1444517 Annoyances/Complaints

Posted by Orik on 23 August 2019 - 03:29 PM

The yard had a big wooden pole, which was the central point for various washing lines. I sat there shelling peas and gazing up at it. And my mother’s mother would tell me about when the German planes flew so low they almost scraped it, and she could see the pilots’ faces.

I always remember that when I shell peas. Other times, too.


My grandmother would also tell me about her encounters with Germans during the war, and we had pecan, peanut, pea, and fava seasons, so there was plenty of time. 

#1444426 nyc meal planning, second half of august

Posted by Orik on 21 August 2019 - 11:28 AM

The way to get that group of five who can't vape and walk to move out of the way is to come close and start speaking loudly in some suspicious semitic language.

#1444372 Foxface

Posted by Orik on 20 August 2019 - 04:35 PM

I think he got everything right.



#1444370 Micromanage my Life - Japan

Posted by Orik on 20 August 2019 - 04:07 PM

Some places in Tokyo you should try and get into. As a general piece of advice, be sure to provide your concierge with the precise details (name, address, phone number) of the restaurant as many restaurants in Japan are named after the owner or a place name and there can easily be confusion. Also note that even if you specify that you don't have any allergies, etc. the concierge may get back to you for every place reserved asking you to confirm this as well as cancellation policies. This isn't them being annoying, but part of the Japanese contract process. I'm listing in tabelog ranking order but filtered based on personal experience - if a place is missing either I haven't been or I don't like it (which means you're missing entire genres like Yakitori, Tonkatsu, and Tempura. I've also skipped places that are not in season such as Ajiman for dangerously wild fugu or Lature for their game menu. Finally I've left out some places where the food can be spectacular but where you may have a bad time due to cultural issues (e.g. Yukimura). Finally I've excluded French and Italian places as well as places that only take reservations from larger groups. 


I'll follow up with similar lists for Kyoto and Osaka but those will be based on careful readings of Tabelog with just a handful of personal experiences. I'll also add some speculative places that I would try based on initial tabelog reviews, and a few casual spots.





Matsukawa - while it is generally always fully booked and generally doesn't accept reservations without a reference, they will occasionally admit people, especially for lunch, if there are cancellations as they are seriously committed to not throwing ingredients away. Your concierge should try and call shortly before the date.


Shinohara - I've never seen another foreigner here and they only took my booking because they thought I just had a really weird Japanese last name, but maybe policy has been relaxed a bit.


Sushi Namba Hibiya - The likelihood here is somewhat improved if you have a script that goes to the Omakase site every few minutes and checks for availability - most seats are booked by regulars but they do release a few from time to time. It is easier to get into the original shop at Asagaya although it's a bit of a trek and more variable (but still very, very, very good)


Hatsune - Somewhat hesitant here - I haven't been to the new location and it is now one of the most expensive restaurants in Japan, and with more staff and rent I think the food cost is probably no longer 70%, but worth consideration for the excess 


Iyuki  - I feel like this is kind of hopeless, but maybe you'll get lucky.


Sushi Arai  - The ideal rice for me. Arai-san's assistant, Mai-chan, spent a year in France, mostly in Paris so you'll have a lot to talk about in Japanese French.


Miyasaka - In the early days he told me he didn't work with concierge services as he wanted to speak with every diner himself, so they might try to get you to go to their second shop to which I haven't been and can't offer an opinion on


Sazenka  - Chinese? you ask - but this is as refined as you could imagine, in fact I would eat some kaiseki first just to get your palate into that very narrow range. If you go, ask for the awabi and uni dish. also their beverage pairings are stellar.


Seizan - Only take a seat at the bar if available, not at a table. 


Sushi Sho - There are many shops started by the group. The one I like best is Takumi Shingo (Takumi and Sho are the same word, just Shingo-san thought Shoshingo sounded funny) but you wouldn't be doing too badly in the original shop linked to here either. People also like the more anglo enabled and extravagant Sho Masa


Goryukubo - can be solemn, but very good classic food.


Akasaka Eigetsu - broom closet Kaiseki. Lovely but can be a lot of food. 


Ishikawa - we've been well over 40 times. I guess that's something of an approval. There are secret wine bottles. Not cheap ones, but they come from a very deep cellar. 


Koho - at first glance, a casual chinese bar, but then you see the modern leaning wines, the modernist cooking equipment... and the food is excellent to boot. 


Yamasaki - Shiro Yamazaki is a friend, and a terrific chef, who finally has the right partners (his previous restaurant, Shiro, closed abruptly as he was unknowingly subleasing the space from some "anti-social" group and the landlord just cut their power off one day). I haven't been to the new shop but I would blindly recommend it.


Tagetsu - The food is very good, if on the fatty side for me. The original location is not the nicest (a basement with really bad noise from the HVAC system) but he is moving any day now to a nice new shop so might be there by the time you're in town.



Kirakutei - One of our go to places as it's relatively easy to book due to prejudice about the location - serves as an a la carte izakaya but also an omakase kasieki-ish menu. They've been talking about moving to a central location but I think that might not happen very soon. Important figures in the Japanese sake revival movement, fun to drink with, great hand. (this is an example of where there may be confusion as there are at least three unrelated Kirakutei in Tokyo although with different kanji, and your concierge would find the others more likely)


Ebisu Yoroniku - not a big fan of yakiniku, but here they might let you book for one person, and their meat is good. The Sato people (originally of Sato Brian fame) have been opening a variety of places so maybe one of those will accommodate a solo diner. 


Kurosaki - very nice sushi. If you can't get into other places you won't be disappointed with it


Yuji - yet another Yakiniku place with offal tendencies. You will be pastrami but it's good. Make sure they know you are $$$erious ahead of time.

#1444334 Micromanage my Life - Japan

Posted by Orik on 19 August 2019 - 09:44 PM

1. The JR rail pass isn't useful in Tokyo proper and I really don't know how much of a good thing it is for the rest of your trip, so check. As I think I mentioned, check if by chance it doesn't end up being faster / cheaper to fly to Osaka instead of taking the shinkansen. 


I haven't been to Naoshima, etc. but everyone seems to like it so you might consider an excursion there. 


Fuck Kyoto. (but still go because first time, etc.) 


3. While you're in fucking Kyoto, there are many good options at good prices, from the all-business Kyoto Station hotel to many nice Onsen and Ryokan options, mostly it's about how much you want to move around (the traditional Japanese places are sweet but oppressive), I'll dig up some notes.


5. I'll check. Keep in mind it's very short notice so it might not even be about foreigner or not at this point. 

#1444258 nyc meal planning, second half of august

Posted by Orik on 18 August 2019 - 12:28 AM


This thread is one of the most horrifying things I've ever read in both its style and content. 



you need to expand your reading.



Must be a hacker, given the advice the real Jesikka offered on the Paris thread.

#1444247 Ou Sont Les Neiges? The Upper Middle (French and other)

Posted by Orik on 17 August 2019 - 09:16 PM

It's made in the style of drunken shrimp so no casserole is needed.

#1444107 Eater Announces Their Restaurant Critics

Posted by Orik on 15 August 2019 - 11:46 PM

For $1250.00, I’d expect that.


Do you know how much slammin' you can do with his cookbooks? 

#1443852 Miami

Posted by Orik on 08 August 2019 - 11:50 AM

You can buy a case from them, resell it in nyc and use the spread to buy two cases in Spain!


Many other good prices (e.g. I noticed the Tschida NT Gruner for $125 or so, compared to US retail around $85) 

#1443780 The Rest of Us

Posted by Orik on 06 August 2019 - 05:23 AM

Same problems.

And don't forget these are markups from retail not wholesale.

#1443559 Paris Bistros, Restos

Posted by Orik on 01 August 2019 - 03:55 PM


We've also been to the restaurants you mention and their ilk.   It occurs to me that maybe is also a generational thing.   Younger travelers, like me, tend to gravitate toward the, as you call them, Le Fooding rooms.    So good there is such a wide choice.


Not sure about the relative ages here!


I think that there is a tendency for younger Parisians and Anglophone travelers (either younger or of a certain cultural ilk) to gravitate towards the Le Fooding/Brooklyn places. As I said, I really like these places, but the hot take (or maybe not so hot anymore) is that the Brooklyn style restaurant has supplanted the formal French restaurant as the signifier of worldliness, good taste and sophistication independent of relative quality within the marketplace. 



Fava beans, three months before their season, sous vide spoon tender steak - Roberta's

Wild strawberries, three months before their season, sous vide rubber fish - PL @ Chef's Club


IQF is really going places.