Rabelais, Ebisu ラブレー

If you're a bloke and you're even slightly uncomfortable with pink things, Rabelais situated near Daikanyama is not the place for you. Apart from the pink seats, tablecloths and glasses, the decor with its deep red wallpaper, black and gold trimmings and velour bathroom is very reminiscent of my idea of a late 70s early 80s French restaurant or nightclub - and I love it! You could almost expect Dalida herself to sashay in and do a number. You are also encouraged to take your lap dog along too, and I noticed that several patrons in the packed dining room had availed themselves of this opportunity to dine with man's best friend.

I recently had Sunday lunch here and I was just thrilled with the experience. Upon sitting down I noticed that the next table was all drinking...pink lemonade! Well actually it's not as kitsch as it sounds, and I have to tell you, the food is great. For a paltry 2,000 yen you can order a "Menu Léger", but there's nothing too léger about this menu. It opened with an amuse of a moderately sized foie gras pudding with spiced orange sauce. Divine! This was followed by an entrée of fluffly blue cheese terrine served with a delicious salad featuring a sprinkling of walnuts. The main was a braised fish of the day with a "Soupe à la Crustacée" which was lovely.

Bread was served without restraint through the meal but the most amazing thing was the way the maître d'hôtel (I think he's the owner) served the wine. The glass of champagne I ordered as an apéritif was very generous. But the glass of wine I was served with the entrée was huge. This doesn't make me sound very moderate but the main did take a while so I actually managed to finish it off before the main came. Noticing this he poured me some more, compliments of the house!

Dessert offered the choice of two dishes from the cart and I ordered the lemon meringue and the baba au rhum (which did not suffer for lack of rhum!). Both were delicious, and I particularly appreciated the bitter note in the lemon custard which worked extremely well with the meringue. As a freebie my new friend added two small candied tomatoes which were an interesting feature on the cart, but seemed a bit too adventurous for dessert. These were great too!

Then as a final act of generosity he, quite unannounced, slipped a shot of brandy in my coffee! By this time I was in raptures about the overall experience that he, his skilled young chef and competent, pleasant staff had provided. This was the most enjoyable lunch I've had in Tokyo for a long time and it was all down the generosity and spirit of this wonderful establishment. Please go there soon - you will not regret it.

ラブレー (恵比寿)





Tel: 03-3780-3090


KM said…
All pink ... with lap dogs?

You're a braver man than I... although a bellyfull o' vino and a splash o' brandy might do it.
Anonymous said…
They definitely pass the pro-active bread & water replenishment attitude test!

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