Mrs. José Andrés wooed the famous chef with her gazpacho. Mrs. Gordon Ramsay has published scads of her own cookbooks. Chef David Lentz’s chef is Suzanne Goin.
The moral: Chef’s wives are no slouches themselves.
Enter Sayuri Tachibe, wife of Chaya’s longtime executive chef Shigefumi Tachibe. Today she opens Osawa, an Old Pasadena shrine to sushi and shabu-shabu.
Inside the light, bright and orchid-filled space, a modest main dining room seats seven at the sushi bar and another ten at the shabu-shabu bar.
Now, we've heard that Wagyu cows get massages and drink beer. But Saga Wagyu cows might be drinking Dom and listening to Chopin, because they’re the second-highest grade of wagyu available on Earth – and you can ask for it in Osawa’s headliner, shabu-shabu.
To order, sit at the shabu bar, where you’ll have your own personal burner. Receive your hot pot and swish your paper-thin Saga strips around in the steaming dashi broth. Maybe add some vegetables, udon, or their homemade soy sauce or ponzu.
Word to the wallet: the Saga version is $89. Though for $21-$26, prime rib eye, Kurobuta pork or seafood of the day make for fine bowls, too.
Which leaves some budget left for your next visit to Chaya.
Nearby: YardHouse; Haven Gastropub; Blind Donkey