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Great news: Chef Yoshiaki Takazawa has opened a bar. This is fantastic for all those who know the beautiful bijou, high-end restaurant in Akasaka that bears his name. Revered by visiting gourmets, it is one of the hardest tables in town to book. Now, we all can sample his cuisine in a more accessible setting.

The food menu reflects Takazawa’s unwavering focus on premium Japanese ingredients, as always straddling the divide between Japanese and Western. His superb ankimo (monkfish liver) comes from Sado Island, off the coast of Niigata Prefecture. He offers a delectable pate de campagne (country terrine) sandwiched between two wafer-thin, crisp slices of bread made with jet-black bamboo charcoal.

Those who have eaten at the restaurant can revisit his classic vegetable parfait in scaled-down form. His karaage fried chicken is excellent, as is his venison sandwich. And the takoyaki dumplings — made with shirako (cod milt) in place of octopus — are not to be missed.

Takazawabar lies just around the corner from the parent restaurant. Bar Manager Masato Sakurai is in charge. But Takazawa will put in an appearance from time to time, as will his wife, Akiko, whose warm charm and fluent English are unforgettable features of dinner at the restaurant.

Robbie Swinnerton blogs at www.tokyofoodfile.com.

In line with COVID-19 guidelines, the government is strongly requesting that residents and visitors exercise caution if they choose to visit bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.

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