NYC: Kajitsu in September

Wednesday, September 15, 2010 7comments No tags Permalink 0

Just want to thank Greg for a memorable dinner this evening at Kajitsu. We did the 8-course Hana tasting with a pairing of 5 sakes. This was my second visit to Kajitsu, the first being dinner in July which I previously blogged about. Kajitsu’s menu changes once every month and the restaurant is strictly vegetarian, leaning close to vegan.

The conclusion gathered after speaking with diners that come once a month for each menu change was that some months are major hits and others are major misses. Luck of the draw, so check the menu online before picking which month to visit! The September menu this evening was wonderful, showcasing Kajitsu’s capabilities in a completely different, more impressive level, compared to July’s tasting.

Our meal, below.
Taro Dumplings with Black Daikon. Chive Shoots, Soy Sauce, and Ginger. Take a close look at the Black Daikon – they cut it to correspond to the exact shape of the moon tonight!

Tofu Chrysanthemum, Lobster Mushrooms and Chrysanthemum Petals. In Shitake and Konbu Broth. The tofu was cut to resemble the chrysanthemum flower, the lobster mushrooms lightly batter and fried, still crisp in the soup.
The moon theme continues with the second course…all the details make a meal…can you see the moon on the right side of the dish cover?

Matsutake Mushroom and Spinach Ohitashi. Panko Fried Matsutake Mushrooms with Pink Salt and Sudachi. Hearts of Palm with Wasabi, Pink Pepper and Truffle Oil.
A closer look at the Hearts of Palm with Wasabi, Pink Pepper and Truffle Oil….(is that a moon I see, the image formed from the two stack?)
…and the chilled Matsutake Mushroom and Spinach Ohitashi.

House-Made Soba with Hoji-Cha Leaves. Dipping Sauce…
…Umeboshi, Shiso, Sesame Seeds. No “moon” in this dish unfortunately ;)

The “main” course, and the most visually stunning. Simmered Late Summer Vegetables. Eggplant, Purple Cauliflower, Orange Bell Pepper, Tomato, Zucchini, Bok Choy, Edamame, Fried Yuba. On the top left is Corn Nama-Fu with Sweet Corn Miso Sauce. And on the right: Green Fig Tempura with Sesame Cream, all balanced on a bed of Arugula and Frisée…
…all the colours!! The Corn Nama-Fu (those two rectangular cuts tucked between thin slices of grilled corn), studded with sweet corn kernels, had us both ooh-ing and ahh-ing, it was the highlight of the evening. Later in the evening we spoke with the manager of the restaurant, and it turns out the owner of Kajitsu is based in Japan where he owns a Nama-Fu factory! Now that explains it!

Brown Rice with Julienne Nagaimo and Brown Rice Crisps. Aonori, Soy Sauce, Japanese Mustard…
…and House-Made Pickles…
…these are the Brown Rice Crisps, seasoned with soy sauce.

Ohagi‘ Sweet Rice Ball with Azuki Bean Paste. Nuts-infused Rice Milk and Cocoa Nibs.

Matcha Tea served with…
Candies by Kyoto Suetomi. Compare with the types of candies we received in July, which were made by Kyoto Kagizen-Yoshifusa.
KajitsuI love Matcha but it was almost 11pm by the time we reached this course and I knew that matcha’s high caffeine level would keep me from sleeping. What to do? Request other hot tea options. The waitress was very accommodating and a warm cup of Genmaicha was delivered to the table :)

Notes: Sit at the counter!! Makes a huge difference in the dining experience. I sat at the back room on my first visit and it’s like eating at two completely different restaurants. There’s exactly eight counter seats, six lined together on the longer side of the bar, and two seats on the shorter side. We sat at the two on the short side and had a fun view of the chef at work. We were one of the last diners to leave for the evening and the he shared with us with glasses of yuzu sake. A sweet end to the meal.

I hope to eventually, one day, someday, catch up on those posts from my visit back home to Hawai’i in May and Boston holiday earlier in August. So these posts might get mish-mashed with the Paris and Brittany ones after I return! :)

414 East 9th Street
New York, NY 10009
(212) 228-4873

  • anonymous
    September 15, 2010

    Went to Kajitsu with my parents in August and really liked it, but the September menu looks even more superb! Wow!! :-) Not sure I will there this month, but I want to try now!! Have a great trip to France!! I am sooo jealous…it's been about a year since I spent just a week in Paris, and I would love love love to go again, especially with someone who is French!!

  • anonymous
    September 20, 2010

    i really heard lots of good things at Kajitsu from my friends. So i set a date with my wife for a dinner to test all the foods. The picture look really tasty can't wait for it.

  • anonymous
    September 23, 2010

    Oh la la! This is a mouth watering food! From the picture it self shows how delicious it is..! Cant help my self looking those pics.

  • anonymous
    September 23, 2010

    Kajitsu is good. . .It's a perfect I think if you try this course. Love the foodpt

  • anonymous
    September 28, 2010

    Thanks for the pics and insight. Everything looks really great!…

  • anonymous
    September 28, 2010

    P.S. looking forward to more of these commentaries…

  • Delys77
    October 21, 2010

    Wow, those are some sharp pictures of some pretty tasty looking edibles. I love anything Asian or even Asian Fusion. I'm watching my waistline so I'm having to do a lot more home cooking but I think I'm going to get a Japanese cookbook and see how I do. Check my blog out at http://www.therecipeczar.blogspot.comCheers and I love your Blog

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