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Friday, April 4, 2008


Bamboo kaiseki and all-you-can-drink bubbly in Tokyo this month

Seasonal buffet at New Otani

At the lunch and dinner buffet of the Hotel New Otani's Top of the Tower restaurant, you can enjoy seasonal spring ingredients and panoramic views of the Tokyo metropolis from its 40th-floor perch.

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The restaurant's kushiage (skewered and freshly fried food) corner serves a wide selection of fresh spring vegetables, such as rape plant, bamboo sprouts, asparagus and mushrooms, as well as pork, beef and fish. Tai fish, which is at its best at cherry blossom time, will be served yubiki style (slightly boiled and sliced). Another highlight of the buffet is a rice dish cooked with luscious asari (clams), whose flavor and aroma reach their peak in spring, together with bamboo sprouts and mushrooms. A spring vegetable salad bar and strawberry desserts, as well as the restaurant's popular roast beef, also adorn the buffet table.

The buffet is available through April 25, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., and costs ¥5,040 for adults and ¥3,150 for children (age 4 to 12) at lunch, and ¥7,875 and ¥4,725 at dinner, including tax and service charge.

The hotel is a three-minute walk from Akasaka-Mitsuke Station (Ginza and Marunouchi subway lines). For more information or reservations, call (03) 3238-0023.

'Spring Time' in Ebisu

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The Terrace restaurant at the Westin Hotel Tokyo has created a "Spring Time" brunch buffet for weekend and holiday afternoons between April 5 and May 6.

The buffet brunch will feature two kinds of Pommery champagne, which has a fruity and delicate flavor. For 105 minutes, you can enjoy unlimited Pommery Brut and Rose with the buffet selections, for ¥11,000. The buffet is served twice a day, from noon to 1:45 p.m. and from 2:15 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The hotel is in Ebisu Garden Place, a seven-minute walk along the Ebisu Sky Walk from the East Exit of JR Ebisu Station. For more information, call (03) 5423-7778.

Royal favorite returns

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Genjikoh Japanese restaurant at the Royal Park Hotel in Nihonbashi, Tokyo, is again offering its popular spring "Takenoko Kaiseki" course.

With their light, crunchy texture and distinct flavor, bamboo shoots (takenoko) are a favorite spring delicacy in Japan. The eight-dish course will serve takenoko in various ways — grilled, boiled, in soup, hot pot and rice, with other mountain vegetables and seasonal seafood.

The course costs ¥15,750 and is available through April 30, between 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. for lunch, and between 5:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. for dinner.

The Royal Park is a five-minute walk from Ningyocho Station on the Asakusa and Hibiya subway lines; there is a direct link between the hotel and Suitengumae Station on the Hanzomon subway line.

For more information, call (03) 3667-1111.

Las Chicas Aoyama reopens

Las Chicas Aoyama, a dining complex in Shibuya Ward, Tokyo, popular with the capital's international crowd, has finally reopened after a yearlong renovation.

The spacious complex of the laid-back Las Chicas cafe, the chic Las Chicas restaurant, the Tokyo Salon bar and the Kyozon art space provides a tranquil setting to unwind and mingle in an international atmosphere that is enveloped in greenery and bathed in sunlight.

The complex is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday to Thursday, and from 11 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday.

Las Chicas Aoyama is located in the Urban Terrace Jingumae Building, 5-47-6, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, a four-minute walk from Omote-sando Station.

For more information, visit www.vision.co.jp or call (03) 3407-6865.

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