CLICK ON THE MAIN PHOTO ABOVE TO VIEW CAPTIONS IN GALLERY FORMAT
Image 1: Yebisu Garden Place in the Ebisu neighborhood.
Image 2: www.joel-robuchon.com
Open daily lunch and dinner.
Image 3: Hard to believe we were in Tokyo with this 18th-century French palace in front of us. This château was imported from France stone by stone!
Image 4: This place is very posh. Formal dining room upstairs with a less formal La Table on the ground floor.
Image 5: Rouge Bar
Image 6: This is the Michelin 3-star Robuchon's dining room!
Image 7: To experience the best of the best, we got the Menu Dégustation (USD$360)!
Image 8: I guess they want to show off how much butter they have?!
Image 11: What a luxurious presentation for an amuse bouche! As labelled on the plaque, this is Le Caviar. Spectacular!
Image 12: They have this same course at MGM Grand in Vegas!
Image 13: Pâté of crab layered with fennel jelly then blanketed with caviar. The taste was even better than the look! A wonderful flavour from the sea to begin our extravagant dinner.
Image 14: Sea urchin 3-way
Image 15: Underneath the foam was steamed sea urchin with creamy mashed potato. It was slightly too buttery for the subtle delicate sea urchin!
Image 16: Robuchon's interpretation of sea urchin sushi - using couscous and cucumber instead of rice and seaweed! A more crunchy and refreshing version of uni sushi.
Image 17: And finally a baked sea urchin resting on top of shrimp and egg custard.
Image 18: Then a cute colourful White Asparagus velouté.
Image 19: A thinly sliced white asparagus, drops of passion fruit, dots of blood orange jelly, and a crispy water-drop shaped crouton. Definitely one of the best courses of the evening!
Image 20: As expected, Robuchon's impressive bread trolley!
This course is called Egg!
Image 22: A ravioli with a runny egg yolk and ricotta garnished with maitake mushroom and herb foam.
Image 23: Then a brilliant Crustaceans course!
Image 24: A whole jumbo prawn wrapped in noodle then deep-fried.
Image 25: With an optional green curry dipping.
Image 26: A rather bland roll of king crab and zucchini.
Image 27: A crab consommé with shiitake and crab.
Image 28: Every component of this umami-rich soup was superb!
We tasted quite a lot of items already but it was not even half way through the meal.
Image 29: Purée of red pepper with bread-crusted Squid dusted with basil topped with lemon zest.
Image 30: Another elegant serviceware!
Image 31: A cheese course before the meat dish?! A strong creamy Gorgonzola blue cheese covered with shaved almond, apple, and tomato.
Image 32: A rather ordinary course of fish from Saint-Pierre cooked in olive oil served with artichoke, tomato, and peas.
Image 33: Cute tiny tomato on the side though!
Image 34: Another highlight of the meal -- Beef.
Image 35: Came with asparagus, carrot, wild mushroom, and a mild wasabi spinach purée.
Image 36: According to our server, Robuchon chose not to use Kobe nor Matsusaka beef here as there are many premium quality beef all over Japan and no need to pay for those over-priced beef!
Image 37: They use beef from Ibaraki, just north-east of Tokyo. Tender, juicy, flavourful with a perfect marbling of fat! I have to agree with him -- it is on par with our Matsusaka or Kobe beef experience if not better!!
Image 38: A unique Italian-Chinese-Japanese fusion dish of risotto made with cubes of Bamboo Shoot instead of rice, powder of a 20-year old soy sauce, decorated with a crispy kinome and a parmesan crispy! Unusual combination but interesting result!
Now a proper Cheese course!
Image 41: A bitter but refreshing pre-dessert of Rosé Champagne sorbet with a thin white chocolate reclined on top.
Image 42: It had raspberries, fresh cream, and aloe vera layered below. The tangy-sweetness really aroused our appetite for a strong and powerful dessert!
Image 43: Yes, a warm Chocolate cake with coffee cream and a distinct chestnut-ginger ice cream...
Image 44: ... with ginger caramel melting inside this heavenly cake. I loved the distinct hint of ginger carried throughout the dessert!
Image 45: Most courses had lived up to our expectation. They then rolled over a fresh leaves trolley of lemongrass, lemon balm, mint, spearmint, thyme, and rosemary. We created our own combination of infusion.
Image 46: Then we had a choice of three types of honey: Spring flower honey, Acacia honey, and Lemon honey.
Image 47: Precise timing!
Image 48: Then, it was a dream-come-true for any sweet lovers. A multi-layer trolley full of petits-fours: brownies, tarts, cakes, meringue, marshmallow, tuiles, madeleine, truffles, etc... Simply impressive!
Image 49: Unlike our experience in Paris, the macaron in Japan tends to be less sweet but with more intense natural flavour. We like them a lot. They have a few types of macaron here: Chestnut, mango, rose, and pistachio.
Image 50: Overall, it was a meal full of flavours using numerous Japanese ingredients. Not only did the tasting menu feature his classic creations, it also had a nice modern twist throughout.
Image 51: The service was still not as smooth as many European 3-star restaurants, but to have such a classy château with a crystal-sparkling dining room in the middle of the most modern city in the world was incredible. Our experience of this meal has once again reconfirmed the fame of "the Chef of the Century", Joël Robuchon.
Image 52: They gave us bread from Robuchon's bakery La Boutique to take home and we ate it during our long flight home the following morning!