As you head to your table at Lature, don’t be surprised if you spot your dinner curled up on the counter by the kitchen. It might be a mandarin duck, a mallard or a pheasant from Okinawa, resplendent in its plumage. At this time of year especially, gibiers (game birds and animals) play a central role in chef Takuto Murota’s refined cuisine.

He came up through the ranks under celebrated French chef Tateru Yoshino, and then built a reputation at the late (and still lamented) Deco in Shibuya. After moving to his current location in 2016, a discreet basement opposite Aoyama Gakuin, it took Murota only a year to win a Michelin star of his own.

At both lunch and dinner, wild food remains front and center on the menu. His signature starter is a delicate savory macaron made with the blood of the same Yezo sika deer he serves as a main course. In summer he prepares a superb dish of ayu (sweetfish) layered inside a delicate pie case.

But it is in late autumn, when the game birds arrive — some shot by Murata himself — that his cooking finds its fullest expression. Order a few good bottles, or take advantage of Lature’s BYOB wine policy, and feast.

Lunch menu from ¥4,800; dinner from ¥10,000; Japanese menu; English spoken

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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