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Kaygetsu Japanese – Dining Experience

November 1, 2007

Tonight a friend took me to Kaygetsu for their Kaiseki menu. For those who don’t know the place, its only the 2nd restaurant in the bay area to get a Zagat score of 28 or higher for their food (the other being the French Laundry– if you consider that the bay area.) It was delicious. Although the sushi was outstanding, my favorite dishes were the last two– gohan mono (rice topped with snow crab and yuba thickened fish broth, and the house made desert. The desert was listed as “sesame square, thickened with kudzu gelatin servered with japanese molasses and figs”. But I thought for sure the server called it tofu. I never had tofu that tasted this good, so when one of the staff came to see how we liked the meal, I recognized her as the owner from an SF Gate photo I saw earlier in the week, and was sure to inquire about it. At first, she was coy- saying it was a secret– but eventually divulged it was really made with milk (probably heavy cream), and I’m guessing sesame oil and kudzu to thicken it. It sat in a thin caramel-ish sauce, and had some cut figs on the side. I’ll definitely be trying to reproduce that dish…

For you sake geeks (ahem, Matthew)- you’d be pleased to hear I pitched in and got the sake tasting menu for us. I took a photo of the menu, along with the sake tasting menu. (those crazy chopsticks were a gift– when I was prying the “tofu” recipe from the owner, she inquired if we were there for a special occasion, and we mentioned it was for my birthday. She then returned with the chopsticks! Very thoughtful.) Although Matthew turned me into a big Dewazakura fan, I think my favorite was the Ohyama Nama sake. I thought I’d have to make a trip to True Sake in the city to score some more, but it seems Beltramo’s on the peninsula has it– and its only $25. Score!

It was a spendy meal (mostly for my friend picking up the kaiseki side of the bill), but I thought it was worth it– especially after some recent bad experiences at some supposedly nice places. Check it out, if you’re feeling fancy.


From → Cooking

One Comment
  1. Ahh, that sounds really good right about now as I am sweltering in the heat of tropical Brazil. There really is nothing like a great Japanese meal.
    Reminds me of a meal I had at Morimoto in NYC a year ago. My sister and I both ordered omakasi and were surprised and delighted the whole meal with the beautiful (and of course tasty) dishes that we received. Sadly I wasn’t in a documenting mode at that time ‘cuz I’d love to have had some photos of some of those dishes.
    Once you master that recipe I’d like to be the first to know 😉

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