Enjoy a rare kind of rice and matcha parfait, a Japanese meal, at a restaurant in Ginza
The high-class Ginza Street is one of the places you'd want to visit when you travel to Japan. The place always has the trendiest things gather there, and compared to other places, Ginza Street is very classy. Another good thing is that on holidays, it becomes a car-free zone, allowing you to enjoy in a relaxed atmosphere.
If you describe Ginza in a word, I would say “a place that has a special quality and cultural expression that have accumulated during a long period of time.” What kind of gourmet dishes can you taste in such a place as Ginza? I found “SALON GINZA SABOU,” a stylish and special kind of Japanese-style restaurant. It was a place where you can have a Japanese-style afternoon tea and lunch, which I found very intriguing. Let's go see what they have!
You can go to the restaurant directly from a subway station and enjoy a Japanese-style meal
SALON GINZA SABOU is located on the second basement floor of TOKYU PLAZA GINZA. TOKYU PLAZA GINZA is located at the intersection of Sukiyabashi and Harumi-dori Street. You can go straight from the C3 exit of Tokyo Metro “Ginza Station,” which is very convenient.
When you go directly inside from the subway exit, you will walk into the second basement floor, and on your right, you will see “SALON GINZA SABOU,” which immediately catches your eye. The exterior is stylish, using a lot of wood, giving you a warm feeling. The poster of rice, which reminds you of fragrant sake or clear crystal, stimulating your appetite, you can't help but go inside.
At first, it didn't look like a restaurant or a café. This was because inside, carefully selected local food, impressive accessories and cute everyday goods are on display. All items are classy, fit for Ginza.
Enjoying Japanese-style lunch and afternoon tea in a Ginza restaurant
When I went further inside, there was a restaurant area. It was partitioned by glass, so no oppressiveness, giving you an open feeling.
It is a Japanese food restaurant, particular about the ingredients and cooking methods
First, let's see their grand menu! They are particular about the rice they use, which is “Yuki Hotaka,” a brand of Koshihikari of Kawaba-mura Village, Gunma Prefecture, carefully grown using natural spring water of Mt. Hotaka, one of the “one hundred top mountains of Japan.” The restaurant is particular about the way they steam the rice, using an earthen pot, which brings out the natural good taste of rice. Aside from eating rice as part of a set lunch, you can also choose to have some of their seven kinds of rice balls.
Let's see what they have for dessert! When I opened the desert menu, their popular dessert caught my eye. It was delicate, depicting a small Japanese garden inside a wooden container. I didn't know what was inside, but I had a feeling of expectation, like opening up a treasure chest. I was there for the first time, so I decided to have this popular matcha dessert!
You can have dessert along with a drink as a set. Here, they use tea leaves grown with loving care at the “Inokura Tea Farm” of Tsukigase, Nara Prefecture. On the drinks menu, you can find descriptions of the different tastes of each kind of tea, and each dessert has a side note recommending what kind of tea goes well with them. If you can't decide what to order, you can use them for reference.
The dish I had been waiting for was served! I had ordered tasty looking karaage (deep fried chicken) and steamed rice. The rice was in a wooden ohitsu, which made the rice look even more delicious.
When I opened the ohitsu, I smelled the nice aroma of the perfectly boiled soft rice. Under the bright lighting, the rice is transparent, like crystal. Rice cooked in earthenware has sweet taste in your mouth. The karaage was very good. I had ordered each separately, so there was no food in small bowls or miso soup, typical for set lunches, but since you can have great food for less than 1,000 yen, I think it's a good value.
Finally, the dessert I had been waiting for. I was first served “Shunmin,” an aromatic tea that had no peculiar taste, despite being roasted. There was a timer beside the pot to tell me when I can have the tea at its best.
After your meal, have a rich matcha parfait, depicting a Japanese stone garden
The desert was breathtaking. It was a parfait in a cubic container, using matcha to depict a Japanese garden, especially a stone garden. On top of the garden, there were strawberry and gold foil.
What’s inside there? With some excitement, I put the spoon into the dessert as I had been told by the server. I found out that the surface was made from white chocolate with matcha sprinkled on it. Inside was matcha flavored mascarpone cheese with some rice puff in it. The dessert was full of matcha aroma, and the important thing was that it was not too sweet. The crispiness and simple taste, along with the nice aroma of the rice puff went very well with the matcha.
Since it was a parfait, there were several layers. When poured some dark molasses and scooped the parfait, each layer seemed like opening a treasure box. Matcha ice cream, azuki beans, bracken-starch dumpling, agar, and chestnuts were mixed with matcha in my mouth, and sometimes, I tasted crispy bits of white chocolate. Not only was it delicious, the texture was wonderful as well!
Having a meal and afternoon tea at a high-class Japanese-style restaurant in Ginza
At this Japanese-style restaurant, they serve wonderful Japanese food, which not only has a traditional Japanese spirit, but also a modern minimal and pop element by being particular about its visual aspect. If you plan on traveling to Japan and wish to go to Ginza for a meal or some tea, I highly recommend SALON GINZA SABOU.
“SALON adam et ropé Tokyu Plaza Ginza Store”
●Tokyu Plaza Ginza Store B2, 5-2-1, Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
●1-minute walk from C2, C3 exits of “Ginza Station,” on Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Marunouchi Line, and Hibiya Line.
2-minute walk from A0 exit of “Yurakucho Station,” on Yurakucho Line.
4-minute walk from Yurakucho Ginza exit of “Yurakucho Station,” on JR Yamanote Line and Keihin Tohoku Line.
●11:00〜22:00（last order 21:00）
●All major credit cards such as VISA, MASTER, and JCB can be accepted
*The above information was last updated April 26, 2018. For further information, please contact the facilities directly.
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