Grand Wine and Fine Yakitori in Yokohama
Toriromeo was among the first restaurants to help revive Ishikawacho's food Renaissance back in 2010. It's an intimate, attractive yakitori shop with a counter that only seats nine, and customers lucky enough to sit down are always glad that's so. The no-gimmicks menu offers about 30 varieties of grilled vegetable and meat skewers.
Shop owner Sugimoto Satoshi uses only salt (rather than "tare", or sauce) to bring out the flavours of his skewers. His simplified style of yakitori is based on years of experience, and the quest of highlighting the best of each ingredient instead of drowning it out with another taste. Patrons who dine at Toriromeo don't come just to fill their bellies, they come to appreciate truly great food.
What separates Toriromeo from other yakitori shops is its wines. Toriromeo boasts and expansive wine menu with about 60 options available. More affordable bottles start around 3500 yen while high-end bottles can run over 60,000 yen. Yes, guests who are looking for exquisite wines do go for the more expensive bottles. And why not? This place is classy enough for a splurge. Not much of a wine drinker? The Hoeggardeb on tap tastes just as great with everything Sugimoto serves.
Veggie skewers range from 150 to 250 yen, while meat is between 250 and 500 yen. I'm a big fan of his sasami ume (chicken with plum paste), roasted duck and puchipuchi tomatoes that explode with flavour when you bite into them. In the end, nothing on the menu is disappointing. Sugimoto can seem a little quiet sometimes, but only because he tries to concentrate on making the food instead of conversation. As a guest, you'll be too busy concentrating on the food as well!
Naka-ku, Ishikawacho 1-15-6
Nearest station: Ishikawacho Station via JR Negishi Line
Former Deep Japan Writer