Wednesday, 24 February 2010


The first time we tried to get in to Isshin it was fully booked so we got the concierge at our hotel to book us in for our last night in Kyoto. Boy am I glad we did. Why were we, dare I say, desperate to try this place? Because Isshin's speciality is meat dishes. Every course Shuici Katagiri dishes up features his own style of beef cuisine. Isshin categorically deserves its Michelin star on uniqueness alone. Each dish is delicate and original. Shuici, for some dishes, likes to use the inner part of the shoulder which is particularly succulent. There are dishes of ox tail, roast beef, sashimi ox tongue - yes, raw ox tongue. Meat served a dozen ways and each more delicate and delicious than the last. The meal finishes with steak and soy sauce mousse with horse radish. Probably the finest piece of steak I have ever had. Actually we finished with a dessert of black bean creme brulee and sake ice-cream. And what a way to finish.
While we finished our dessert and tea we watched as he prepared the next day's dessert and prepared some steak. It is almost worth the price of admission to watch a master chef at work. Some restaurants in Sydney have tables in the kitchen where you can eat and watch the kitchen at work. You pay double for this wank. So far for us here it has been par for the course and it is amazing having such a close interaction with the chefs and it is just how things are done - no wank. Isshin has been truly a unique and satisfying experience.

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