An Di: The Only Notable Vietnamese Bistro in Tokyo With a Poetic Wine List

When discussing the origin of An Di, the classic chicken and egg debate is sure to come up, because most people would never know whether it was the wine or the food that came first when creating this restaurant. Surely, both lend themselves to each other, but it is clear to me that the wine was most definitely the real inspiration for the birth of this fine restaurant located near Gaienmae station.

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The Wine

Owner Motohiro Okoshi has studied wine over the last twenty years and is the sommelier for some of the most impressive wine programs all over Tokyo. When you first sit down at the restaurant and are presented with the wine list, you immediately know you are in good hands.

An Di’s original Banh xeo paired with orange wine.

It’s a wine menu brilliantly categorized by flavor profile in the smartest way I’ve ever seen. Unlike most arbitrary and boring wine lists, which categorize wines by region, Okoshi categorizes his wine in an exciting, informative, and very creative way.

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As you sit and read the descriptions, you feel as though you are reading poetry about the wines themselves. Categories on the wine menu like “Unique Deeply Outstanding Reds,” “Savory Soft Sometimes Nobly Oxidized White Wine,” and “Mineral Salty Thick White Wine” read like a poetic soliloquy about harems in the form of grapes. And it really starts to beg the question as to “why aren’t all restaurants categorizing their wines like this!?”

The Staples

An Di is considered to …continue reading