Victor’s, Ebisu

Events - August 22nd, 2009


Its location is hard to beat, and the spacious European-style interior is as elegant and refined as the excellent food. The breathtaking view overlooking Ebisu and beyond is undoubtedly one of the best in Tokyo, especially at night when the whole metropolis stretches out below in a blanket of twinkling lights.

For a special occasion Victor’s is highly recommended. Chef Nicolas Chevrollier creates unique French cuisine without compromise, using almost all local ingredients. Although Japanese produce differs slightly from European varieties, the results are a delight to taste. Having spent eight years in Japan, Bordeaux-trained Chevrollier has honed and perfected a distinct and thoughtfully prepared menu.

Our appetizer of miniature croquet and daikon with white wine vinegar sauce went well with the chilled Perrier and lime. As we whetted our appetites, we couldn’t help but notice how precise and attentive the staff were, always looked out for our needs. The following course of white asparagus, scallops, and a delicate mousse sat perfectly with a light salad with shrimp dressing and a garnish of fried noodles. It was accompanied by three types of wonderful, freshly baked bread.

Next was a twist on gazpacho soup, combining fresh carrots with a cumin jelly. The result was slightly sweet and perfectly chilled to suit the hot summer weather. It alsweekender-016-for-press217o helped to cleanse the palate nicely for the fish course. The gazpacho, we were told, is particularly popular with Japanese diners, reflecting the rawness and freshness treasured in Japanese cuisine.

Delicious grouper came next, pan fried until the skin was wonderfully thin and crispy, then placed in a soupy sauce with oriental clam that was simple and fresh. The main course was well worth the wait, a luxuriously rich and wonderfully dark French pigeon, complimented perfectly with foie gras, Japanese mushrooms, pigeon heart, liver, and a dash of truffle. The contrast of this indulgent dish with the previous, more subtle courses was perfectly guided by Chevrollier’s practiced hand. Finally, a dessert of mini chocolates, summer fruits, fresh vanilla ice cream, and grapefruit jelly ended our lengthy and delicious feast.

For visiting business people or an especially important lunch meeting, Victor’s makes an excellent choice. The evening menu, too, is worth the trip to Ebisu for the extra service and fantastic cuisine, served in the intimate and lavish surroundings that place Victor’s literally above most other restaurants in the city.

The chef is busy working on a business lunch menu for a shorter, more accessible meal, which is sure to be a hit with patrons in the area. Nicolas Chevrollier, although rigorously French in style, can’t help but be inspired by Japan’s abundance of fresh ingredients, especially the country’s high quality fresh fish and shellfish. He told us as we chatted over coffee that he is always thinking of customers’ expectations, considering the best way to cook the dishes.

Perhaps a good endorsement as well are the positive comments received from recent French visitors to Victor’s. European-style and French cuisine is often imitated, but authenticity this far from home is hard to achieve. Victor’s and Nicolas Chevrollier hits the mark, and does it with panache.

Best table: By the expansive windows, to take advantage of the magnificent view
Prices: Lunch courses from ¥3,000 and dinner from ¥10,000
Location: On the 22nd floor of the Westin Hotel, Ebisu Garden Place