There’s an art to ordering dishes in any restaurant. Usually a concept done right will not give much trouble to the customer — It will come to you as a second nature. But often times there are restaurants who cram as much as they can in the menu to cover a wide range of customers and end up cooking mediocre dishes. I’m not a fan of those who maximize their sales that way. I like restaurants that specialize in a dish or two and do it really well.
I find LECOQ one of those. Anyone like Sashimi? Check. Pizza? Check. Skewers and rice bowls? Check. Tacos? Check.
So it’s not a wonder my companions were a bit lost (and I was late for our dinner once more) in the mess of LECOQ’s menu. Luckily you’ll save a lot of time with my tips.
If you’re looking to unwind with some wine, I recommend ordering the merlot from Southeast Australia. Well, you’ll soon find out that plenty of LECOQ’s prowess lies in its meat. The best part is that a bottle will only cost you $35.
Don’t order sashimis for appetizers, because LECOQ isn’t a sushi place (save that for Shinji by Kanesaka. Seriously.). While the hotate was undeniably fresh (which is of course, my eternal favorite among sashimis), just resist. I let this one slide; my friend was craving for some.
The better choice? The Miso Roasted Bone Marrow is a social bite worth sharing at an affordable $10. You won’t get this deal anywhere else. The only criticism I have is that LECOQ glazes the bone marrow with barbecue sauce. You don’t really need embellishments on bone marrows. They are flavorful enough with salt. Less is more.
Time for mains. The must have: Steak-Scorched Rice ($28). The crispy garlic rice served ala paella is enough to feed 3-4 people. The 200g flame grilled hangar steak, surprisingly, is terrific and tender.
To those who are hungry, I recommend getting the 18-hour sous vide Iberico Char Siu with Shoyu Egg ($18) over the Atas Signature Roast Chicken with quinoa ($16). My friend wanted to get some chicken, but to be honest, the char siu was more worth it, so I let it slide again…
And while you can crossover and get tacos from sister restaurant TACO BAR across the street, I recommend ordering skewers as you slow the night down. Pork Belly Enoki ($3) is perfect with the merlot. Juicy, with the right amount of fat.
As much as I wanted to try out Cartilage, Heart and Gizzards (Hehe, once again I’m dreaming of Omoide Yokocho in Shinjuku. I miss the alley and the bartenders terribly — it’s like going to a shrink but better with yakitoris and sake. As I write this, I’m nostalgic about Amerikamura in Shinsaibashi…), the bone marrow was deadly enough. Talk about high voltage food. Don’t eat bone marrow everyday, boys and girls.
LECOQ gets rowdy (and eardrum-busting) during Friday nights as it’s flanked by multiple dive bars. I recommend coming by during lunch where the crowd is less of younglings drowning in Sapporo beer towers. Reservations highly recommended.