Date of Visit: February 23 2013
While the other runners opted for carbo-loading with pasta for their pre-race meal. This runner threw all caution to the wind and had a full-course omakase set lunch at Ginza Okuda instead! Why, she reckoned, there’s a rice course in Japanese kaiseki and that’s carbo-loading, ain’t it?!
I had booked 2 months ahead because I only had time for a Saturday lunch before ‘The Race’ and I also wanted to sit at the bar which only accomodates 10 people. Moreover, I read that the Owner-Chef Okuda only cooks at Ginza Okuda on Saturday lunches, however he wasn’t there for our date. We were served by his young and attentive Chef Shun Miyahara instead.
At first, we had the maitre ‘d all to ourselves to interpret for us. He was highly entertaining and we thought he was the only person in the restaurant who spoke English. Talk turned to Tokyo Marathon, seemed that I made quite an impression for getting in, and soon after, everyone ‘miraculously’ can speak English! So from Course #2 onwards, we were served by the waitress in kimono who meticulously explained the dishes to us, chipped in by the sashimi chef and the rotiserrie understudy; supplemented by lots of browsing the food encyclopedia too! It became quite a raucous lunch, full of laughters and jokes!
Here are the photos of the wonderful memorable lunch, ¥16,800 + 13%
Southern Beauty Sake ¥2000 per glass. This is ABSOLUTELY the BEST SAKE I’ve ever tried! (…what did you say about booze before a race? I downed 2 cups!)
A medley of 6 exotic starters
Owan, a clear soup of richly fragrant dashi broth containing silky soft dumplings of egg and king prawns, topped with shredded myōga and seasoned with zest of yuzu citron.
Tsukuri (sashimi) course with three kinds of seafood – salmon, tai (snapper) and creamy, white squid
Guess how long this dude has been fanning? 1 year! His next step-up will be OWAN! And a very hard dish to master…If he quits before then, rest assured he will be very qualified and well-trained to open an izakaya joint of his own which is very popular and run by young guys like him
Fish ‘2 ways’ -Grilled and fried
A bowl of nimono, simmered vegetables
Grilled Duck with Rice course in claypot to finish off our savoury course. Since we couldn’t finish, we had a beautifully packed doggy-bag to take back for our late supper in the hotel.
3 kinds – orange in jelly, creme caramel and yuzu sorbet
I am truly in love with the food and especially the presentation (check out the Ladies, ice with roses in the sink!). No wonder Ginza Okuda was awarded two Michelin stars (in the 2012 guide) within four months of opening. As we left the restaurant Chef Shun Miyahara and his waitress in kimono walked us out to the street. The Chef even offered to walk us to the monorail station so we won’t get lost and make it in time to Tokyo Big Sight to pick up my Bib for the race the next day! How sweet!
Ginza Okuda, I’ll see you in my return trip to Tokyo! *Kisses*