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Question about the Shousuke restaurants in Shinjuku

Thanks Robb. The more I think about it though, we might just go to Fuku on Thursday evening. Fuku was the original plan, and I thought the plan was ideal until I realized Fuku is closed on Wednesdays. I had the rest of the schedule set by then, basing a lot of it on what neighborhood we would be in at that particular time, so I was desperate to find a yakitori replacement for Wednesday evening. I have heard so many great things about Fuku though, it won't be too much of a challenge to move 35 Steps Bistro to Wednesday and do Fuku on Thursday.

Dec 24, 2013
Sanjuro in Japan

Question about the Shousuke restaurants in Shinjuku

From what I understand, there are two of them. One is in a two story building, while the other is on the 7th floor of the T&T Building. I can't find much information about them at all, at least not in English, so I'm wondering if the 7th floor one would be a nice first dinner in Japan (with yakitori the primary focus) for a group of 6?

Thanks.

Dec 23, 2013
Sanjuro in Japan

35 Steps Bistro Question

Thanks for the help guys! It is decided...we are going there one of the six nights we have in Tokyo!

Dec 23, 2013
Sanjuro in Japan

35 Steps Bistro Question

I'm considering this place for our first night in Tokyo (group of six) since Fuku is closed on Wednesday. Since we may not make it back to Fuku and that was our yakitori place for the trip (soooo many other foods to try), I was hoping that 35 Steps Bistro would have yakitori options on their menu in addition to the other great stuff I've read about. Unfortunately, I have been unable to locate a menu anywhere online and I have not read a single comment mentioning yakitori there, despite it being an izakaya.

Can anyone let me know if they serve yakitori or any kind of skewered meats there? Thanks.

Dec 19, 2013
Sanjuro in Japan

Per Se Gift Experience Card

What makes the silver experience card $800 if the price for two would be $590 without supplemental dishes and no gift card? Just the champagne?? Taxes too, I guess.

Dec 03, 2013
Sanjuro in Manhattan

Going a la carte at La Pergola?

maureen, I'm throwing another quick question in here, if I may. It concerns tipping. The common guidance for Americans in Italy is "Italians don't tip." Then they go into the whole thing about how workers in the service industry in Italy are paid a "living wage" so if you receive great service you may want to tip just 5%, at best.

In the U.S., workers in the service industry get paid next to nothing and live off of tips (you know this, I'm sure, I'm just saying...). I am a habitual 20% tipper, sometimes over 20%, here in the states. However, La Pergola strikes me as a place where the "Italians don't tip" rule may not apply?

I have contacted a few people who insist that even La Pergola falls within the same guidelines, but I would appreciate your opinion, specifically. At the moment, I am thinking of tipping 10% at La Pergola. Is this entirely wrong? Should I tip more?

Thanks.

Sep 28, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

Going a la carte at La Pergola?

When you say "à la carte is almost always a good idea", do you mean in terms of price or that it usually results in a superior meal? Thanks.

Sep 21, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

Going a la carte at La Pergola?

My wife and I are going to La Pergola for our splurge honeymoon meal in Rome, and I have been keeping a close eye on the menu. Apparently it changes each month, which is lovely. Having said that, I thought the 9-course "Gourmet Menu" (tasting menu) looked better in previous months than this one. So, I have a few questions:

1. When going a la carte (three courses, plus perhaps a cheese and dessert course), are the courses any larger? I am dying to try the signature dish, Fagottelli "La Pergola", which on the tasting menu seems to consist of about six pieces of pasta at the center of the plate. Great for a 9-course extravaganza, but a little less great for a 3 - 5 course meal.

2. Neither the fagottelli or the Veal Tail "La Pergola" are on this month's tasting menu, which is why I'm considering going a la carte in the first place. I was wondering if the tasting menu could be customized at all? Could I switch out one of the nine courses for the fagottelli and another, perhaps, for the veal tail?

3. The mystery of the "Grand Dessert". This is a course I MUST have, ha ha. I know it can be purchased a la carte, but I'm wondering what the price is? The cheese course is included as a tasting menu course (25 euros a la carte) as is the Grand Dessert. Nowhere on the menu is the Grand Dessert listed outside of the tasting menu, so I'm curious about its cost.

Thank you for any help and advice.

Sep 20, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

Gnocchi in Rome

Great! Thanks for the info!

Sep 18, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

Gnocchi in Rome

Is gnocchi served at any trattorias when it's not Thursday? I'm leaving Rome on the only Thursday I will be there...

Sep 17, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

ROME: Tough Dinner Choice on Monday Night of Honeymoon Itinerary

Had to revive this thread in order to ask:

Will Giovanni ar Galletto even be doing outdoor dining in mid-October? I admit, that IS the main attraction, so I would like to be sure. If we can't eat on the Piazza Farnese we can forget it entirely. I had chosen Armando for the "trattoria meal" (going to Checchino now as well, and still La Pergola), but stupid ar Galletto keeps popping up in my head. IF the terrace is open...

Sep 15, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

LA PERGOLA: As Good As Ever? Or Not?

Bah, I already feel like an idiot for posting this...

Especially since there are currently only 72 Michelin 3-star restaurants in the world, and La Pergola is one of them. It also bears mentioning that I've seen some average reviews, even by food critics, of El Bulli (which has been #1 on the San Pellegrino list for several years).

Aug 18, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

LA PERGOLA: As Good As Ever? Or Not?

Ok, here we go again... I'm probably making something out of nothing, but I can't help it.

I happened to look into these San Pellegrino "World's Top Restaurants" lists, and first of all, I admit to having no clue why I should care what they say or think. Nonetheless, they fancy making lists, and I noticed that La Pergola was ranked #54 in the world on their 2007 list, #65 on their 2008 list, and is completely absent on their 2009 list.

I would be less concerned, I suppose, had La Pergola been on NONE of these lists. Unfortunately, there is pattern of "decline". The debut with this particular group of voters at #54, a relatively minor slip in '08, then the colossal plummet right off the list in '09...

Many other restaurants on these lists have held steady in their position, or risen higher, over the years. No such fate for La Pergola. Since this is destined to be the most expensive meal, thus far, in my life...I guess I'm just wondering why.

Aug 18, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

ROME: Tough Dinner Choice on Monday Night of Honeymoon Itinerary

Thanks everyone for your help.

Perhaps I'll go with Armando for the Monday night dinner so that all of my choices will have one thing in common:

NONE are Rick Steves recommendations. :-)

That's if I go with La Taverna dei Fori Imperiali, Armando, La Pergola, and Da Baffetto. Not a single one of them is in Rick's 2009 guide. I was a bit surprised to find that Nerone IS one of his recommendations in the 2009 guide, but no matter...

Also, don't get me wrong...I actually like Rick Steves. I have countless guidebooks (Michelin, Blue Guide, Fodor's, Frommer's, DK, etc.), each of them proving useful in their own way, but I think his have the best overall information for itinerary planning. Yet, I must admit, I've heard several negative opinions about his food recommendations.

Aug 14, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

ROME: Tough Dinner Choice on Monday Night of Honeymoon Itinerary

Oh, I forgot to mention that I would also prefer your recommendation to be traditional Roman cuisine since I know that La Pergola is not.

Aug 09, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

ROME: Tough Dinner Choice on Monday Night of Honeymoon Itinerary

Mbfant, any "gastronomic destinations" in central Rome in an Armando type of price range (saving the big bucks for La Pergola) that we could go to on a Monday evening instead? Thanks.

Aug 09, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy

ROME: Tough Dinner Choice on Monday Night of Honeymoon Itinerary

My wife and I are going to eat at La Pergola now on one of our nights in Rome, honeymoon and all, so now I have our dinners planned with one small exception...

On Sunday, it will be La Taverna dei Fori Imperiali because that is one of the most recommended places I can find that is even open on Sunday. Tuesday will be La Pergola. Wednesday will be a pizzeria that we can make the final decision on later (between Baffetto, Da Ivo, Dar Poeta, etc.).

Before we had decided on La Pergola, Monday was going to be Armando al Pantheon and Tuesday was going to be Giovanni ar Galletto on the Piazza Farnese (Rick Steves' "favorite al fresco setting in Rome").

So now I need help deciding between Armando al Pantheon and Giovanni ar Galletto for Monday night. We can only do one. :-( I was quite looking forward to Armando, but I've heard great things about Giovanni ar Galletto too and I really wanted to experience that setting during dinner.

Any advice? Thanks.

Aug 06, 2009
Sanjuro in Italy