It is a measure of Tokyo's hidden depths that many of its top restaurants remain so little known, at least among the city's expatriate population. That is certainly the case with L'Osier. Founded in 1973, it established its heavyweight reputation under French master chef Jacques Borie, winning a devoted clientele among those who shun ostentation in favor of fine dining in a setting as plush and comfortable as a private club.

Since 1999, L'Osier has occupied the first two floors of the House of Shiseido (its parent company) on Namiki-dori in Ginza. It boasts a grand, Art-Deco-look entrance and luxurious interior that are impressive, even by the standards of this upmarket locale. When Borie retired at the end of last year, any concern among regular customers was quickly allayed following the arrival of his replacement as executive chef, Bruno Menard.

Whether you are there for a leisurely lunch or settling in for the evening over a multicourse dinner with a bottle from the extensive cellar, what makes L'Osier special is the attention to detail, the sense of intimacy and Menard's superb gourmet cuisine.