Opening its doors to the public on 23rd November, Tokimeitē, takes its name from a colloquial Japanese expression describing a sense of anticipation or ‘butterflies’. The restaurant will be operated by Zen-Noh Group, the business arm of Japan’s largest agricultural cooperative, JA, in collaboration with internationally renowned chef, Yoshihiro Murata. Acclaimed designer Yasumichi Morita has designed the interior of the restaurant.
Chef Murata, who holds a total of seven Michelin stars across his three restaurants in Kyoto and Tokyo, has created a modern menu based on authentic ‘wa-shoku’, or traditional Japanese cuisine. Dishes from the wa-shoku tradition (recognised by UNESCO as an important part of the world’s cultural heritage) have been created using classic techniques, and showcase the finest and most delicious Japanese ingredients, such as Wagyu beef.
The menu features an extensive list of starters including grilled garlic and soy edamame, Wagyu Rei Shabu – thinly sliced Wagyu shabu shabu garnished with ponzu jelly and edible flowers; a tender Wagyu beef tartare, topped with chives and wasabi yuzu sauce. From the mains, guests can try a richly flavoured chargrilled soy marinated rump steak created especially for Tokimeitē, as well as a table simmered Wagyu Sukiyaki served with onion and watercress in miso dashi with a side of creamy truffle sauce. There is also a variety of sashimi sets and sushi rolls including Wagyu nigiri gokan, five types of wagyu nigiri as well as soft shell crab, prawn tempura and Wagyu tartare truffle maki rolls.
From the bar, an extensive range of premium sakes, shochu, whiskies and cocktails are available to complement the cuisine. The exotic selection of cocktails features aromatic and unusual ingredients such as umeshu plum liqueur, Kyoto Sansho pepper, Oolong tea and various herbal bitters. Choices include the signature Tokimeitē cocktail (Grey Goose, Aragoshi-Umeshu, Cherry Juice, Cherry bitters and plum bitters); and the Sansho Panza (Diplomatico Reserva, Ocho Reposado, Calpico, Kyoto Sansho pepper, Coriander bitters, Mango soda and cardamom bitters). The menu also features several types of hot cold and sparkling sakes by the glass, carafe and bottle, including: Junmai-Shu; Ginjo-Shu; and Junmai-Daiginjo. Alongside these choices is a comprehensive wine list as well as a selection of Japanese whiskies.
The 70-cover restaurant, which is set over three floors, is designed to celebrate elements from Japanese seasons, shrines and temples. The ground floor is inspired by fire, and features rich gold lights alongside an open kitchen, Josper charcoal oven and robata grill. The first floor evokes the contrasting mood of water. A silver feature light reclaimed from a shrine shimmers softly, the glass on the windows is rippled like a waterfall, and the ceramics on the walls are decorated with a platinum spray that echoes water droplets. As diners move to the back of the first floor, the element of wood comes to the fore, with warm colours and a striking wooden lattice covering the walls. A Chef’s Table private dining space for up to eight guests is also planned, and will be available shortly after launch.