Nihonryori RyuGin, Fine Dining in Tokyo

In terms of dining, Tokyo has a lot to offer. If you want to experience high-end Japanese cuisine, one strong option to consider is Nihonryori Ryugin run by chef Seiji Yamamoto. This upscale restaurant is nicely hidden in the residential side of trendy district Roppongi and awarded with the maximum 3 Michelin stars.

Nihonryori RuyGin's sleek entrance
Nihonryori RuyGin’s sleek and discreet entrance

Unless you are already in Japan and speak fluent Japanese, you will have to ask your hotel to make the table booking for you as they only take reservations by phone and from within Japan. RyuGin‘s well-designed entrance doesn’t feature any menu or even anything indicating a restaurant. It’s likely all tables are booked far in advance and this isn’t the kind of restaurant you stumble upon. The dining room itself is small and without any windows. Atmosphere is felt and noiseless. At time of visit (April 2015), the staff was a mix of Japanese and French waiters and the unique menu had 10 refined courses. You are strongly advised to have the very original tea pairing to go with the dishes, instead of the usual wine pairing! Some of the teas are quite sophisticated and accompany food surprisingly well. Most of them are served cold, in beautiful wine glasses. If you are revolted by raw fish, prepare to be astonished. When carefully selected and prepared, it turns out to have a very delicate and fine taste (far from the strong smell cooked or fried fish often has).

Grilled firefly squid and ending yuzu citrus
Grilled firefly squid and ending yuzu citrus

 

Bamboo shoots dumpling and simmered hamaguri clam with spring flavors
Bamboo shoots dumpling and simmered hamaguri clam with spring flavors

 

Spring's ocean delicacy displayed in 7 plates
Spring’s ocean delicacy displayed in 7 plates

 

Famous array of spring vegetables
Famous array of spring vegetables

 

Sanuki olive beef on stoneware in sukiyaki style with young yam
Sanuki olive beef on stoneware in sukiyaki style with young yam

 

Simmered rice flavored with cherry blossom tea and sakura shrimp from Surugawan bay
Simmered rice flavored with cherry blossom tea and sakura shrimp from Surugawan bay

 

One piece of strawberry...
One piece of strawberry…

 

Hot sake and cold sake sweet flavors
Hot sake and cold sake sweet flavors

Nothing disappointing in this state-of-the-art Japanese restaurant, besides a certain stiffness. Prices are reasonable, especially if you choose the tea pairing (again, very recommended). RyuGin means “the dragon’s voice” and offers a great Japanese gastronomical experience in Tokyo.

The dragon's voice
The dragon’s voice

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