Ricos Kitchen

Ricos Kitchen by bloompy
Ricos Kitchen, a photo by bloompy on Flickr.

The first time a friend took me here during a sunny weekend and without a reservation, we were turned away; it was chock full and there was a wait line. Because of that, I made a reservation last night to guarantee a table for a Saturday brunch, at the earliest time, 11:30, when they just opened. By chance, after a wonderfully sunny week, I awoke to a grey and rainy Saturday. I figured that even without a reservation, it would be easy to get in because the weather was crummy.

Ricos is a small restaurant, located not too far from the Ebisu Garden Place and the Tokyo Westin. When my friend told me that it was a good brunch place, I envisioned the standard brunch fare of western fares like egg dishes, crêpes, and pancakes, but to my surprise, Ricos serves a more involved menu of fusion food (Japanese and Western), featuring mostly Japanese ingredients that are spelled out in the menu. The Starters choices include, among others: Kagoshima Black-Hair Beef Carpaccio with Parmesan Cheese, Rucola, and Fresh Lemon; and Zuwai Crab, Chinese Cabbage, and Seaweed Risotto Kyoto Black Pepper. In the Entrée section: Guinea Fowl from the Ishiguro Farm, Hyuga Chicken in Shichimi Pepper Cream Sauce, and Grilled Echigo-Pork Loin in Caper, Tomato and Brown Butter Sauce.

A tiny little block of quiche was introduced after drinks were served and brunch ordered. When that passed, bread and butter came up, and not too long thereafter, my order. I had the Catch of the Day Carpaccio Salad in Yuzu Flavored Ohba and Shallot Vinaigrette for starter, and the Today’s Special Wagyu Rib-Roast with Tapenade sauce on top for the entrée. Both of them were good, although nothing “jumped out” of the plates. Wagyu beef, when done correctly, speaks for itself. I am glad that the Tapenade sauce was subtle enough not to overwhelm the greatness of the beef, which I had it prepared rare.

My companion had the Sautéed Hokkaido-Scallop and Squid Bouillabaisse Soup as an appetizer and the Pan-Fried Catch of the Day with Tsubu-Shellfish and Scallop Cake in Fish Stock Soup. The waiter was surprised that my companion ordered two soup dishes, one after another, but I saw nothing wrong with that, especially when both of them had great stocks. They were the kinds of soup that really hit the spot in a cold and rainy day.

Dessert came with the set menu in the form of Yoghurt Sherbet on top of (what I heard to be) puréed Kabocha Manju, accompanied by tea or coffee.

For a non-smoker like I am, Ricos is great because the dining area is completely non-smoking. Smoking is only allowed at the counter. There is also a small room that contains only 2 tables with chairs and window-seats. For a small gathering of at least 6+ friends, this room would be a nice, private dining area.

As of this writing, the brunch set menu is offered for ¥2940, complete with quiche, bread, starter, entrée, desserts and coffee/tea. Omakase (Chef’s Suggestion) came at ¥4500, which includes Amuse (teaser), 2 appetizers, pasta, main dish, bread, desserts, and coffee/tea.

Ricos Kitchen
4-23-7 Ebisu 2F
Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Tel: +81 (03) 5791-4649

Lunch: 11:30-14:30 (L.O.)
Dinner: 18:00-22:00 (L.O.)
Closed on Sundays

There is another location, called Ricos Azabu, but I have not been there yet; nevertheless, here is the address:
RICOS Azabu
1-20-3 Higashi-Azabu
Minato-ku, Tokyo
Tel: + 81 (03) 3588-8777

Lunch: 11:30-14:30 (L.O.)
Dinner: 18:00-22:00 (L.O.)
Closed on Sundays

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