6F, Ginza 745 Bldg, 7-4-5 Ginza, Tokyo, Japan

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This tempura restaurant is on the sixth floor of a Ginza office block, and at the time of writing holds a Michelin star. It has been here for two years, but relocated here after originally opening in 2000 in a street quite nearby the current one, at 6-Chome in Sukiyabashi. I mention this because some websites still have the old address, and we were duly taken to the old one by our taxi driver.

There is a wooden counter with seats arrayed around it, the chef operating directly in front of the diners. The chef uses Taihaku sesame oil for frying, with the aim of a light batter, which he certainly succeeded in creating at this meal. An appetiser of bamboo shoots and scallops was laced with wasabi and was pleasant (14/20). The tempura sequence began with crisp prawn heads and then the body of the prawns, which were perfectly fresh since they were moving around the counter moments before they were served. Next was “kiss fish”, which had good flavour, and then some excellent asparagus. Tiny scallops were rolled up into a ball and fried, and these were quite good, as was the bamboo shoot tempura that followed. A small thin, white fish that the chef was unable to translate but I think was whitebait was next, which was pleasant enough but unremarkable.

Better was good quality shiitake mushroom, and better still a large scallop that was alive and removed from its shell in front of us before being briefly fried. This had excellent sweet flavour. This was followed by a mountain vegetable that we recognised from another meal as being "buds of cod", which is faintly bitter in taste. Finally there was unago (salt water eel), which was carefully cooked and good flavour. There was no dessert, so the meal concluded at this point. 

Service was from the chef's wife, who was very polite and attentive, and spoke a little English, which the chef did not. The bill came to ¥29,268, which works out at £105 apiece with a beer apiece to drink. This was certainly an enjoyable experience, and although it was not the best tempura I have eaten in the city it certainly had some highlights, such as the excellent scallop and the asparagus. The one star Michelin assessment feels correct.

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