Chef and owner Hiro Saka opened Kagaman more than 30 years ago. Saka has been in the food business a long time having made the climb from a ship’s galley to opening a string of restaurants in central Osaka. Kagaman, with its Michelin star, is the jewel in the crown. I went with one of the ordinary-priced lunches at just under ¥6,000. Be warned, however, the omakase courses (courses set by the chef) start at ¥15,000 for lunch and ¥20,000 for dinner. Lunch opened with white sesame tofu with a drizzle of soy sauce, one of Kagaman’s trademark dishes — indeed, a trademark of most kaiseki (multicourse) meals. As good as it was, it comes with a challenge: Can chefs update a dish like this while staying within the canon of Japanese cooking? At Kagaman, tradition holds sway.
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.