Beacon - Aoyama - Steak

Beacon - Aoyama
February 2007

1-2-5 Shibuya
Ph. 03-6418-0077
Lunch: 11:30 - 15:00
Tea time: 15:00 - 17:00 (Sat, Sun, Hol)
Dinner: 18:00 - 22:00
Bar: 18:00 - 23:00

This place was recommended to me for lunch but since I am usually busy during the day we had to settle with dinner. The decor is similar to that of modern restaurants all over the world with dim lights, high ceilings and a slightly Japanese influence.

The menu has a wide range of fish and meat dishes with a few vegetarian dishes also available. To start with, we had the prawns and the wagyu beef carpaccio matched with the pinot noir (by the glass). The prawns are served in a deliciously spicy sauce and crispy bread to dip in. I was a little disappointed when the carpaccio was served. It looked more like beef tataki with thick slices of slightly seared wagyu arranged on the plate but it did taste good. The pinot by the glass was average.

We had a salad between courses and were a little surprised when the waiter arrived with a Caesar salad. On the menu it was called Romaine Salad, Romaine lettuce leaves are also known as Cos lettuce leaves. It seamed like our waiter did not have much to do. He continually looked over us, waiting for us to finish our meals and as I was putting my fork down from the last bite, his hand was already on the plate taking it away. It was a little disconcerting having the feeling of being watched while eating our meal. As another waiter reached across the table to put a fresh glass of wine, his sleeve went straight in my food.

For mains we ate wagyu steak and braised lamb shanks with garlic mash on the side. We drank a glass of Shiraz and a glass of Merlot. The Shiraz was typically barossa with rich peppery aromas but the Merlot was definitely the pick of the day and it went perfectly with the lamb. The mash had one garlic clove on top but other than that I could not taste any garlic mixed in with the mash. The steak was as expected very marbled and became a little too fatty towards the end (it was quite large). The braised lamb shanks were a special and I don't think they will last long on the menu. The meat did not fall off the bone and the flavours on the sauce did not match the lamb.

Best Dish - Prawns to start
Cost - For 2 people including 2 glasses of wine each we paid around 16,000 yen.
English Friendly - Yes, English speaking waiters and an English menu.
Seats - 100
Atmosphere - International.
Food - Stick with steak.
Service - Below average.
Wine list - Good.
Private Functions - Yes
Non smoking areas - No
Vegetarian Options - A couple of dishes.

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