瞳孔が開く味!?芸大出身のGYUさんが作る「はすとばら」のごはん A bite full of surprises: A one-of-a-kind gourmet adventure in Shibuya

耽美な内装の店内にはDJブースもあり、常に様々なイベントが開催されている。カフェ? レストラン? バー? どれも適切でなく、決まった括りで呼ぶのは難しいが、あえて端的に語れば、「GYUさんの店」と呼べるだろう。

If you take a seven or eight minute walk away from Shibuya station towards Tamagawa-doori, position yourself opposite the Cerulian Tower Hotel and move your eyes up to the second floor window of the mixed tenant building that stands there, you’ll see the billboard for ‘Hasu to Bara’. The shop’s interior is a whole different story. A DJ booth suggests the space is used for parties and events, yet the chairs and tables suggest otherwise. A restaurant? Café? Bar? Nobody is really sure. If you were to ask somebody, they’d probably just say “that’s Gyu-san’s place”.


Ah yes, the Tokyo University of Arts graduate and ‘Hasu to Bara’ owner, Gyu-san. There’s not another guy like him. An incredibly unique individual, he’s made a name for himself throughout Tokyo. However it’s not his art that he’s famous for - it’s his food. It’s not Western, not Japanese, not traditional nor contemporary. It’s just simply unique. It’s the kind of food that makes your eyes widen with surprise after just one bite. Most people are left wondering how on earth he comes up with such concoctions, so I sat down to interview him about it all.


若い頃、“ミニマリズム”、“ミニマルアート”に傾倒していたGYUさん。さまざまな場所で、小麦粉/水/すす/家具/身体/音etc. と、さまざまな”素材”をその場で組みあわせて創り出す、即興的な表現を繰り広げていた。現在の「料理」と通ずるエピソードだ。

Food that is representative of the present moment

Gyu-san admits being a huge fan of minimalism during his younger years. He’d take simple matter such as water, flour, sounds, furniture and bodies and arrange them into art works on the spot. It’s something that’s carried through to his gourmet work today.
His sensitivity, decisiveness and quick sense of judgment comes from the time he was taken clubbing for the first time. “Seeing such a diverse group of people expressing themselves so freely - LGBT people, models, musicians...I decided then and there that I wanted to work at that nightclub”, he says. It was during his time working at the club that he developed an interest in food. “Making snacks for the other staff members and having them praise my cooking skills made food really fun for me”.



After working at a variety of food establishments - organic produce shops, an Uzbekistani steakhouse, Japanese restaurants, Italian, Thai, Vietnamese and Indonesian gourmet establishments - he found himself head chef / manager of the ‘Immigrant’s Café’. At the time, it was the coolest hangout in Aoyama - a creative space with a club area for events where all the ‘it’ crowd came to chill. After it’s closure, Gyu-san set up his own place - ‘Hasu to Bara’.

The funny thing about Gyu-san is that he believes the people are the food artists - he doesn’t believe his creations are works of art. “I always make food on the spur of the moment - I’ll propose a menu to my customers and make it for them. Food isn’t something that should be recreated and worn out time and time again - it should be made to represent the here and now”.



Gyu-san has no recipes. All his food is improvised on the spot. He believes that since the time, place and atmosphere are different each time, food can never be duplicated. “Sure, you can follow the same recipe protocol more than once, but I have to stress that food will always be completely different. It may look the same and taste kind of the same, but it’ll never be exactly the same. That’s why I throw away the ‘recipe’ approach and just follow my heart. I try to enjoy working with the ingredients to make something new every time.”

The proof of his lifestyle lies in his ever-changing menu - not one day is the same as another. He prepares nothing in advance and uses only fresh produce, meaning no matter how many times you go to ‘Hasu to Bara’ you’ll always leave feeling like you’ve gone on a little gourmet adventure. Throughout August there is a special set event menu 'Dougenzaka x Hasu to Bara', so if you're interested catch it while it's hot.




Born in 1967 in Kamakura, Gyu-san has been experimenting with minimalism since his time as a student at the Tokyo University of the Arts, continuing to create installations up until this day. From his twenties he began cooking, and opened his first restaurant ‘Hasu to Bara’ in 2006. This year the shop celebrates its 10th anniversary.


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