Bouillabaisse, fish and chips, beef Parmentier, foie gras dengaku. For a self-proclaimed seafood bistro, Ata certainly covers a lot of territory — much like its dynamic owner-chef has done in his short career.
Satoshi Kakegawa started out at Auberge au Mirador, the pioneering gourmet getaway in Hakone, spent three years at the vaunted two-Michelin-star Les Creations de Narisawa in Aoyama, parleyed that into becoming opening chef at Daylesford Organic near Omotesando and finally opened his own place at the end of 2012.
Ata — it’s Swedish for “eat” — is a warm, welcoming place. Idiosyncratic too: Few restaurants offer a choice of two parallel staircases to climb (it’s one floor up from the street) but no elevator. And few have comfy, low-slung armchairs (eight of them) the length of the open kitchen. The only part that looks a bit like a bistro is the room at the back, where you sit at simple plain-wood tables with candles.
The prime seats, though, are at that long counter. Here you can ease back, watch Kakegawa cooking his crustaceans and work your way through the offerings chalked on three blackboards on the wall above.