Our exclusive interviews with ROCOCO partner restaurants, chefs and sommeliers offer insights into their cuisine and passions in their own words.
10｜NéMoModern French (Minami Aoyama)
Exploring Umami in French Cuisine
NéMo, an innovative French restaurant, opened in Minami Aoyama in June 2021. It has quickly developed a reputation for serving a variety of dishes that exceed expectations. Before opening NéMo, Owner Chef Kenichi Nemoto perfected his skills working at famous French restaurants such as NARISAWA and Quintessence, where he worked for 5 years. Chef Némoto’s skills are especially evident in the preparation of seafood, the ingredient he is most passionate about. He insists on only using fish that he is completely satisfied with. He started fishing in the sea during his childhood, which explains his discerning eye and deep knowledge of seafood. For Chef Nemoto all details need to be carefully considered for fish to reach the customer in the best condition possible. He carefully factors in the impact of the time from when a fish is roasted to the time it reaches the customer’s table. "I want to capture the flavor of the earth and the umami of each ingredient, to the point that it lingers on the tongue," says Chef Nemoto. He prefers cooking with wild ingredients and using his carefully honed techniques to bring out the intensity of their flavors. He always tries to incorporate unique ingredients, making sure to prepare them in a way that is easy for customers to enjoy. "Always think of the bigger picture and don’t get caught up in the details!" is the motto Chef Nemoto lives by.
Forget Your Cares and Enjoy Our Delicious Food
Chef Nemoto’s theme when designing NéMo was "circular shapes and no corners." Chef Nemoto believes that it is important for restaurants to be places where you can release stress and relax. Beyond the atmosphere, the menu, drinks, and all other dimensions of the restaurant should also contribute to this feeling. "I hope you not only come to fill your stomach, but also to relax in the atmosphere we created,'' says Chef Nemoto. The interior of the restaurant, which uses plenty of raw wood, is like a lounge where you can forget the hustle and bustle of the city. The experience of their specialty dish "NéMo Kebab" contributes to this special atmosphere. It is prepared by baking pita bread at the customer’s table, rather than in the kitchen. The service of handing freshly baked pita bread wrapped around colorful vegetables and meat is an unexpected moment that temporarily transports guests far from central Tokyo.
“ROCOCO is Made with Sincerity and Care”
Chef Nemoto's first impression of ROCOCO was, "It is made simply, with sincerity and care."
"It is a luxury beer, but fresh and fruity. Delicate and soft in texture and taste. The elegant, yet cute appearance of their bottle is perfect for our concept. You can drink it without hesitation." “When you are relaxed, stress is naturally released from your system, and before you know it, you are back to your true self.” We would be happy if you could spend a relaxing time while being yourself at NéMo, and enjoy ROCOCO as you discover Chef Nemoto’s beautiful dishes.
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Innovative French Fusion｜Roppongi