Aoyama Bistro’s last days!

Aoyama1.JPGMany moons ago, my friend Staci & I spent a few months in search of the restaurant which would be called “Our Favorite Shabu Shabu Place” (detailed in some old MySpace blogs, but good luck finding them in that mess. MySpace just jumbles them all together once they’re not in the most current list any more.). We went to Tokyo Tokyo at the Mandarin, that new shabu shabu place by Gyu-Kaku, Sushi Bistro, & Aoyama Bistro… & after Aoyama Bistro… we kind of just kept going to Aoyama Bistro. It was a combination of ambience, service, food quality, & probably the home made sauces that made us feel very happy there. And then there was the ebi karaage which became our Addictive Appetizer.

Aoyama Bistro’s mama, Kiku Hagiwara, is there every day. She remembers us when we call to make reservations & she makes the most wonderful miso eggplant. Since day one she has exuded kindness & welcome, which is to be highly valued when you are the only English-speaking patrons in the whole place. Most of the time; once we saw Danny Kaleikini at another table. Other than that, we’ve generally always been the only locals in there.

I have posted some thumbnails of… food. Enjoy.

Aoyama5.JPGAoyama4.JPGAoyama2.JPGNovember 30 will be Bistro Aoyama’s last day of operation. I stopped in at the restaurant not too long ago to purchase a gift certificate for my parents, & was informed that they will no longer be dispensing GCs since they are closing! I called Staci on the spot & she got dressed & met me for dinner that night. I think both of us were feeling a little panicked at the thought of losing our favorite shabu shabu spot.

Aoyama3.JPGAoyama Bistro is located on King Street just past McCully Street. It shares a crowded parking lot with Bunmeido, Snack Aoyama (different owner), & Anyplace Lounge. Look for the big yellow sign out by the street that says “Castella Cake” (Oh, Castella Cake… but that’s another blog.); reservations can be made at 955-3655. The shabu shabu is $19.95 per person & Staci & I love the fact that it requires minimal skimming off the surface of the boiling water. If you don’t know what I mean, you must not eat enough shabu shabu. Once you swish enough slices of beef in the water, a sort of scum forms & then must be skimmed off unless you’re like me & don’t mind it. It’s always been Staci’s job to do the skimming.

Aoyama7.JPGAoyama6a.JPGAoyama6.JPGSo, as Aoyama Bistro’s last month begins, I peruse my phone list looking for people to have dinner there with me while we still can. I usually direct my guy friends to Sushi Bistro, which serves All-You-Can-Eat shabu shabu for $23 with almost hostile service & sauces from the bottle, just because guys generally just want quantity. I actually haven’t tried the shabu shabu at my Home Away From Home, Tokkuri Tei, but I’m consistently seduced by the Tan Shio & sushi there so I probably never will. But Aoyama Bistro is special – it’s Our Favorite Shabu Shabu Place. We’re so sad they are closing their doors. Please open up a new location!


3 Comments so far

  1. Reid O (unregistered) on November 2nd, 2005 @ 4:53 pm

    Sorry, I don’t eat at Shabu Shabu places. I don’t really know if I would eat there. You know me. Picky picky picky. :o) I just got good and bad news. Robert asked me to run karaoke on Wednesdays and Mondays, So I no can go out on those days again. :o(. I need to make more money. :o( David and Jay have been talking to me about when and I tell them when I can get enough money to back myself up. :o) I’m shooting for ending of next year. :o)

    My heart goes out to you for your pain. :o( I hate when you find some place that the food and atmosphere is great and then it ends. *something like Lois’s* :o( I’m still off Tuesdays though. I’ll give you a call then :o)

  2. demonica (unregistered) on November 7th, 2005 @ 12:57 pm

    Oh, Lauren, I wish I could say I’d go there…but for me it’s hard to justify spending money to eat Shabu Shabu at a restaurant. I’m extremely picky and I blame that on me being raised in “the muthaland”. Shabu Shabu is one of those things you make at home, sitting at your kotatsu…and I try to be open minded not a snobby eater here but for some reason I can’t bring myself to let loose and just go out and eat washoku. People always ask me for Japanese restaurant recommendations here and I swear, I have maybe one or two that I mention only because otherwise I’d have zip, zilch…

    My friends and I usually do a little get-together and make Shabu Shabu at home. Yakiniku and Nabe is fun, too. Yeah, we’re strange like that. We have fun pigging out at home. Woo hoo.

  3. Lauren (unregistered) on November 7th, 2005 @ 5:17 pm

    I wanna go to your house!!

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.