In the restaurant's own words: "The pinnacle of Japanese cuisine is a collaboration between the content and the container. At Zeniya, Chef Shinichiro Takagi supervises every ingredient and detail of decor. From every dish and vessel to every flower, making each creation a perfect instant of harmony." As you can see, they were successful: a series of magnificent creations surely produced a feast for all the senses.
The meal started with a beautiful consomme with specks of shiso and a handful of trout eggs (this, arguably, was health food),
|Consomme at Zeniya|
|Vegetable dish with clear broth at Zeniya|
and then, the pièce de résistence, a plate containing a "chestnut," but not an ordinary chestnut: here a boiled small chestnut is pierced by grilled soba noodles to simulate a cracked open unshelled chestnut. This was not just a virtuoso performance (the chef said it takes 15-30 minutes to make each one) but also delicious, mixing the earthy taste of roasted buckwheat noodles with the creamy sweet taste of the kernel of the chestnut. Accompanying the chestnut, and equally beautiful, was a tiny cherry tomato flavor bomb inside the skeleton of a Chinese lantern. The presentation was completed with two autumnal colored leaves and a shrimp and seasonal vegetable plate. For me, this course, and especially the chestnut, was the culinary highlight of the entire tour.
|Autumn on a magnificent plate at Zeniya|
|Mushroom and meat dishes at Zeniya|
|Rice, pickles and miso soup at Zeniya|
But it is impossible not to be dazzled by the intellectual content, execution, taste and overall beauty of this gastronomic experience.