In an elegant space
hidden on one of Roppongi's side streets
Experience the ultimate in shabu-shabu,
served with ponzu from a recipe kept secret for 25 years.
On a small road just off Roppongi Dori is a restaurant that stands out from its surroundings - Shavu Shavu.
Customers that make their way here often hesitate a moment when they see it, wondering if this classy-looking place is really a shabu-shabu restaurant.
Owner and chef Yusuke Kashiwagi says that this was his goal, to create something that "didn't look like a shabu shabu restaurant" in order to offer his visitors a pleasant little surprise when they arrived.
Once inside, you see something else truly original - shabu shabu pots laid out for each individual guest. Kashiwagi explains why.
"This area has a lot of visitors from other countries and people entertaining clients, so I thought they would be happy if they could order individual servings. You don't often see single-serving pots, which is a big part of what makes us special."
Parititions can be moved to create private rooms that can accomodate parties anywhere from two to ten customers, just adding to the appeal.
Customers dine in this elegant atmosphere on shabu-shabu, served with ponzu made from a secret recipe Kashiwagi inherited from his father.
It enjoys great popularity in Osaka, where his father has been serving it to customers for more than 20 years. Kashiwagi wanted to spread the word even further, so he quit his job at a brokerage to open the restaurant here in Roppongi.
After careful consideration of the differing tastes of people in Tokyo and Osaka, he finally arrived at the perfect recipe.
All of the sauces are made in house, and to ensure diners thoroughly enjoy the carefully-created flavours of those sauces, they dip their meat only in a simple konbu dashi broth.
The secret ponzu recipe is what makes Shavu Shavu what it is. Dipping a slice of rich, juicy kuroge beef into that tart ponzu nectar brings out the subtle essense of the meat in a truly striking way.
They also offer a rich array of other sauces too, from an aromatic sesame and a gentle soy milk sauce, to a sweet and tart tomato sauce, giving a new face to traditional Japanese meat-based cuisine.