Food & Drink | TOKYO FOOD FILE

Good Luck Curry: A different take on a favorite spicy dish

by Robbie Swinnerton

Contributing Writer

It’s immediately clear that Good Luck Curry is a bit different. From the cheery sign by the entrance exhorting “Don’t Worry, Be Curry!” to the hip decor and the indie/club-jazz/hip-hop soundtrack, this simple, stylish 10-seater neither looks or sounds like your average Tokyo curry-rice joint.

Nor does it taste like one. The flavors are light and as bright as the turquoise plates they’re served on, with neither the gloopy richness of Japanese-style roux-based curries nor the oil-heavy style found in northern India. It comes as little surprise to find the recipes were put together by a chef, Satoshi Kakegawa of Ata in nearby Daikanyama, who is trained in French cuisine.

You won’t find him in the kitchen at Good Luck, but you can taste his influence. The umami of his ebi (shrimp) curry comes from the bisque he makes from homard lobster heads. For his mussel curry, he serves the shellfish separately, so their delicate flavor does not get lost in the curry base. The flavors of the mutton and sag (spinach) are brought out with equal subtlety.

Only two curries are offered each day, though the varieties are rotated at frequent intervals. The curries can be ordered as a combination, an option inscribed on the menu blackboard as the “W” (double) plate.

All options come with salad and a couple of relishes, including one made with grated coconut, evoking the sambal chutneys of southern India.

Curry from ¥800; a little English spoken

In line with the nationwide state of emergency declared on April 16, the government is strongly requesting that residents stay at home whenever possible and refrain from visiting bars, restaurants, music venues and other public spaces.
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