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Shinya Otsuchihashi has big ideas. Since opening his waterside Nakameguro restaurant a year ago, the young chef has wowed customers with dizzyingly inventive high-concept dining. Craftale – not to be confused with craft ale, beer enthusiasts – is one of those restaurants where the merest prod of the food with a fork feels like cultural vandalism. The food and the crockery are both stunningly beautiful.
An unusual wall-framed collage of the Eiffel Tower and Tokyo Skytree photoshopped into the same skyline sets the tone for wild yet perfectly formed experiments in fusion: a deconstructed niçoise salad comes with sardine sashimi, guacamole and a tortilla; a chicken and mushroom tart is accompanied by a glowing egg yolk, purple grated potato and a bread roll baked with red wine.
While Otsuchihashi could do well to scale back some of the slightly overwrought conceptual stuff (bread pairings, colour schemes, dishes sourced entirely from individual prefectures etc), the former Joël Robuchon chef has spades of talent and ¥7,000 for eight of his culinary creations is a relative bargain. Book early for spring dining – his large glass windows have a perfect view of the riverside sakura.
2F, 1-16-11 Aobadai, Meguro-ku
|Transport:||Nakameguro Station (Tokyu Toyoko, Hibiya lines)|
|Opening hours:||5pm-1am (last orders 12midnight). Lunch Sat, Sun only 11.30am-2pm (1pm) / closed Wed|