There has been considerable chatter lately, Gentle Reader, on the part of the nibbling masses suggesting that your Humble Correspondent had not been seen on these pages for some period of time. Pourquoi, they murmured - perhaps a medical emergency or an extended absence? Not an ounce of jealousy that they had visited exotic sites like El Bulli and Les Halles. Not an ounce ... but perhaps a kilogram or two.
The truth of the matter is that a combination of geographic difficulty (with one's place of trade now based in Yokohama) and the shuddering slowdown of the dining industry here in Tokyo has meant that journeys into new culinary adventures have been significantly curtailed. At a time when many establishments are finding things difficult, The Once and Future Blonde and I believe it's important to support the old favorites ... giving our meagre custom to those places which have gone out of their way to please us in the past, and promise to continue doing so in the future.
At the same time, we have enjoyed a few venues new at least to us. So I beg your pardon and forbearance while I catch up with the reportage with places like Manoir, Les Enfants Gates, Cujorl, Cero and others.
But at the same time - spare a thought for struggling restaurateurs and take the time to visit the "old" places. And if you see a red-faced foreigner who is counting out the change to pay the account, toss in a tenner or so!