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When the famous chef Nobu ate at Kikunoi restaurant he stated that he got what “eating with eyes” means! I got it   when my dinner started at the counter where I had the chance to observe the preparations too!



As I promised in my previous short diary I am going to tell more about my wine&food experiences in Japan. And today I am here to tell about the restaurant Kikunoi: rewarded with 2 stars by the famous french Michelin Guide to restaurants. 

I will describe the singles courses along with the pictures. Please find here the complete menù.

  • Course 1 “Poached fig”

Sweet&sour is the character of this course which is usual in the japanese cuisine. In this case I would also say “sugary” as at the base there is a marinated fig; the sweet sensation is soon balanced by the mustard sauce, lightly spicy too.

  • Course 2 “Assorted appetizers”
appetizer set (set di antipasti)

appetizer set (set di antipasti)

Appetizer set: each one contained in a red flower, very romantic! Among the most interesting ones: quail egg in ginkgo aspic (which is a bean similar to the fava one); fish aspic made with pike conger, soy salad, passion fruit: sweet, sour and sweet again.

  • Course3 “Sashimi of tai amd tachiuo”

Sashimi, of course!


Sashimi of tai amd tachiuo

The presentation is elegant and minimalist. The bites are 2, the first one is simple to deep in the soy sauce; the second bite is to be eaten as it is along with an acidic aspic made of chives too, another common ingredient.

As usual the fish is very fresh and delicate!

  • Course4 “Sashimi of blanched hamo”

Another sashimi but made with hamo fish that they use to  thoroughly fillet because of the numerous spines. This is why it seems a (white) sponge even in its consistency.

  • Course 5 “Deep fried kamo eggplant, shrimp dumpling and more”

Grilled miso marinated hamo

Delicious: a cup closed with the top of an eggplant. In the cup a soup of eggplants, peppers and deep fried shrimps. Dense with a full taste but with no excesses at all!

  • Course 6 “Grilled miso marinated hamo”

It looks like a sushi with rice and hamo fish but it is not because the fish is marinated with our sweet&sour touch again! The flavour is then stronger than the raw version.

  • Course 7 “Salt-grilled ayu”

Wonderful presentation! The flavour is a perfect mix between fried and baked fish. You can have the entire fish as it is, eating everything and the right size. (see the cover pic)

  • Course 8 “Kuzu noodles”

    cold noddles in ice....cube (noodle freddi in blocco di ghiaccio)

    Kuzu noodles

What can I say: the plate is -evidently- a huge ice cube! In it: cold noodles: rice noodles with vegetable and flowers. The taste is very delicate with a green touch and a sweet final too.


  • Course 9 “Braised vegetables with turtle soup”
turtle-soup (zuppa-di-tartaruga)

turtle-soup (zuppa-di-tartaruga)

I had never had turtles before! So… turtle soup (jelly consistency) with fried turtle’s shell. My husband was about to cry! The turtle was very soft and, again, the final sensation was sweet and sour again. The turtle’s shell was breaded with rise crackers.

  • Course 10 “Steamed rice with ayu”

Steamed rice with ayu”

Kind of similar to our (Italian) taste. A delicious rice with herbs, spices and sweet fish (“sweet” is only the name of the species): taste of sea-side and a vegetable touch. It has been served with a red peppers soup (not hot): rich in (peppers) flavours, very tasty.

  • Dessert

Special. As usual, their courses are always well defined, the flavours are not usually mixed up. Here we had cane-sugar ice-cream, with its caramel touch



along with sesame jelly, same flavor of the sesame bars we find in our markets and that I love.


What’s more? See you soon with another adventure!