Kondo in Tokyo
Tempura in Tokyo is an event. I know, it seems impossible that watching someone deep fry seafood and vegetables would be a high end affair, but at KONDO it’s just that. In fact, eating tempura at Kondo has officially ruined tempura for me in America. It just won’t be the same because in Tokyo tempura is a delicacy and specialist restaurants like Kondo insure an unforgettable experience. So unforgettable that it’s rumored that President Obama wanted to eat at Kondo during his last visit to Tokyo, but he couldn’t get a reservation.
We arrived at Kondo approximately 15 minutes before the second seating and waited with 13 other guests. By 1:30pm, we were all seated around the counter, fired up and ready to go. When Chef Kondo walked in and stood in front of two large caldrons filled with hot sesame oil, you could hear a pin drop as everyone watched with rapt interest as delicious seafood (often times, so fresh it was still moving prior to cooking) and vegetables were deep fried and placed in front of us one at a time. We special ordered two house delicacies — the sweet potato which was huge and rather filling, and my favorite dish the sea urchin wrapped in shiso leaf. Unfortunately some of my photos disappeared, but several of my favorite bites are shown here.
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