Afterwards this week, the recently painted crimson pink doorways at 1227 de la Montagne, near the Bell Centre, will swing open to expose Okeya Kyujiro, an omakase sushi cafe helmed by Japanese chef Takuya Matsuda.
Although a number of Montreal sushi eating places, such as Park, Ôkini, and Hidden Fish (just a couple doorways down), have provided an omakase component, Matsuda claims Okeya Kyujiro will be the only a single to work exclusively in the regular Japanese “leave it to the chef” omakase type of dining.
His edition will see approximately 20 clients for every evening — break up in two rounds of 10, all perched all-around a wrap-about wooden counter encasing chefs expertly crafting dishes from start to complete — for a two-hour, 20-system knowledge, concluding with a tea ceremony. The cafe will present a person menu per night time coming in at about $150 to $200 for each head.
“In Montreal, no 1 else is accomplishing this, but in Toronto and Vancouver there are numerous omakase restaurants. That is why for my initial site in Canada I arrived right here,” Matsuda says. Outposts in the two other Canadian towns are even so on the way, with one prepared for Vancouver this coming summer season, and 1 in Toronto in wintertime 2021.
But there was something else drawing Matsuda to Montreal: “When I was young, I saw a Cirque du Soleil exhibit and I was so impressed that I considered, ‘One day, I want to open a restaurant that is like a live exhibit, demonstrating all the talent driving Japanese food. Clients will see the fish getting cut, the rice becoming cooked, the ginger staying grated. Even the sesame will be roasted in front of them. I’m inspired by the performances of Cirque du Soleil which is a different purpose why I chose Quebec.”
The term “theatre” even appears in the Downtown Montreal restaurant’s signage, in front of the setting up that after housed Jérôme Ferrer’s Europea. It’s preceded by the word “Washoku,” which means classic Japanese delicacies, referring to his eyesight for an elaborate and very carefully strewn choreography of Japanese cooking. “To be truthful, I’m a little weary of the restaurant small business, which is why I required to make this far more of an artwork overall performance,” he laughs.
He’s joined by sake sommelier Kuniko Fujita, who has worked at other Japanese eateries close to town, which include Marusan, Bistro Otto, and Ôkini, and well-recognised Japanese chef Hachiro Fujise (formerly Iwashi, Thazard) on the meals facet. A Japanese pastry chef, some musicians, and a calligrapher are also on board. “And since this is a theatre, I connect with them the cast,” Matsuda claims.
Of study course, all of this will have to wait around until indoor dining is permitted to resume (and the number of new COVID-19 situations diminishes) in the province. In the meantime, and as of opening night on January 8, Okeya Kyujiro will be selling a constrained number of bento boxes for takeout. “It’s minimal, like possibly 10, for the reason that if we want it to be fantastic foodstuff, we are unable to make a great deal of it,” Matsuda claims.
Okeya Kyujiro opens for takeout on January 8 at 1227 de la Montagne.