Remember fusion cuisine? It’s back … at least at this eclectic Franco-Japanese eatery in the Flatiron. When was the last time you enjoyed sushi within a 19th century maison setting? Or a savory, truffled blanc manger paired with sake? It’s all possible, and modernly composed, at Mihoko’s 21 Grams by chef Charles Le Tous.
The chef, who recently joined the team at the 1½ year-old restaurant, offers two omakase ($150) options: one leans more heavily on his native France, and the other is driven by sushi. And while dishes such as Wagyu tartare sushi satisfy, there’s a particular dish on the French side that really wows: a dainty assemblage of rabbit cooked many ways. Le Tous, who says his grandfather used to raise rabbits, has dubbed the dish “Monsieur Lapin.” It is made up of a tiny, tender rack of ribs; a juicy loin; a rich round of pate made from the offal; and braised legs in a crusty little pie. The remaining bones are used to make the jus, while a smear of mustard adds a classic French accoutrement. A small, fat carrot and Brussels sprouts round out the Gallic presentation.
Mihoko Kiyokawa is the restaurant’s owner and spiritual guide; a Japanese Renaissance woman who is a holistic nutritionist, PhD, former ballerina and costume designer. The decor — crystal candelabras, quilted chairs, an etched Cartier mirror, and the hall of Asian teapots leading to the host stand — reflects her varied interests and the wide-ranging menu.