Sunday, December 1, 2013

Ore no French Italian 俺のフレンチ・イタリアン

It was a wonderful meal and we did not have to stand eating. 
Cheap French and Italian gourmet food in Tokyo is no longer a dream with the establishment of a series of "Ore no XXX. " Though the word "Ore" is a casual form of "my", the food here is seriously taken care of by chefs headhunted from Michelin-star restaurants. And yet the prices are jaw-dropping cheap for the premium ingredients. 
 トマトのムース 雲丹とキャビアのジュレ寄せ 1480円 Take for instance, the Uni Jelly on Tomato Mousse with Caviar. Words can't describe how heavenly this dish was as the strong-tasting uni and mildly sweet tomato mouse disintegrated in our mouths.  I was shocked by the amount of uni in just one single dish alone and if you are a uni fan, you can't afford to miss this dish.
It would be doing the chefs and the uni which sacrificed their lives for human's pleasure a great injustice if we were to dismiss it like any other uni dish such as uni chawanmushi, uni pasta, uni sushi . The best thing, only ¥1480 ($18.70) for such a gigantic portion!!Woohoo~~~
As temperatures plunged like mad that day, we chose a warm appetizer of Black Pork Collagen in Pâté Brick Pastry?? I never knew the existence of Pâté Brick pastry, which has a texture smoother than deep fried wonton skins. 

A pity my camera could not capture steam that was escaping as we sliced open the meat balls. The collagen were not artificial extracted lumps but instead parts of pigs that contain collagen, so we stumbled upon slices of pig ears and pig trotters.

黒豚のコラーゲン パートブリック包み焼き 
Together with the brown Basalmic vinegar sauce, the tangy green vegetables and red pomegrate seeds cuts downs the greasiness of the pork. Again, these two big meteoroids cost only ¥580 ($7.30)
 
Next up is another Chef's Specialty main course - JUMBO Mushroom Pie!! ジャンボマッシュルームのびっくりパイ包み焼き. As the Japanese name implies, the size is meant to surprise the guests (びっくり). This came later because it took 20min to bake.
 
The brown sauce was fabulous, and the layer of white cheese on top of the juicy mushrooms and meat pattie remained gooey right till the end. Price tag for this golden "egg"? ¥1280 ($16.10)
We were figuring whether to get more food as every table was ordering more food. The two young ladies in front of us ordered a regular sized pizza (only ¥980), risotto, lamb racks, uni mousse, foie gras etc...and another couple ordered at least 7 dishes. The entire hall of people were not only enjoying the live music performance but ordering so much food for themselves. This is understandable as there is really no other places where one pay peanuts for such high quality cuisine. 
 
So we had another main dish that was the star of the restaurant (in limited quantities) フランス産ドーバーソールのポーピエット 俺のキャビア乗せ. I don't know how to translate this but it is a FISH wrapped in French Sole Fish in Uni Sauce and Caviar. The sauce was so concentrated, which made me concluded that the amount of uni I had that single evening was the amount I have altogether in the last 10 years! Really, I'm not exaggerating. 
The core was filled with fish cake paste, uni paste and fresh uni. It was very tasty but I must admit that my taste buds were quite overwhelmed by the uni and perhaps we should have picked a non-uni dish.
 
Ok, finally to the desserts, which we had interest in ordering one--俺の初恋物語 ¥480 because it was an award winning creation by one of the chefs.  The grapefruit mousse and honey cream reminded me of the Luminere from Mont St.Clair but this had an additional thick crunchy base. 

Unfortunately, the small portion did not make a lasting impression. Instead, our eyes was attracted to a huge round dish of creme brûlée with ice cream which made us deeply regret of our own dessert choice. 
Before you get too excited about wanting to visit this place, seats are hard to get as the Japanese are even more fervor when it comes to good deals. I could not even get through the phone line to make a reservation and so I went to the place in hope that the queue would not be too long. 

But nope, there was already a queue snaking up and I ended up making a reservation for this dinner a month ahead. (Note that you can't place reservations months ahead of your visit but only at the start of the previous month)
How can this restaurant earn money if the chefs splurge on the expensive ingredients like this? They work on the economies of scale with high turnover rates for tables. Sessions are scheduled 4pm, 6pm, 8pm, 10pm on weekdays ( it opens from 12pm on weekends/PH) and there are no fewer than 100 diners in one seating. Plus, there were hidden charges, each guest had to order one drink and pay ¥300 for the amuse bouche of aged cheese and ¥300 for the music performance (whether you like it or not) 
But considering the quality and the quantity of food, it is no wonder that this place has proved a massive hit. This latest store is already the 20th outlet under Value Concept spearheaded by the CEO Takashi Sakamoto. If you fail to make a reservation, it is recommended to go for later seatings on weekdays. 

Ore no French・Italian 俺のフレンチイタリアン
Minato Ku Kita-Aoyama 3-11-7, Ao Building 1F
(Exit B2 from Omotesando Hills Station)
Mon-Fri 4pm-11.30pm
Sat & Eve of PH 12pm-11.30pm

Sun & PH 12pm-10.30pm
Reservations: 03-6450-5911 (10am-3pm)
127 seats (72 standing seats and 55 table seats)
Website http://www.oreno.co.jp/panorama/aoyama/ (very cool website but you might get dizzy)

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