Category: Word of Mouth  

Word of Mouth

Meat-eaters will want to check out Wolfgang’s Steakhouse in Roppongi. This New York steakhouse’s first international restaurant serves up USDA prime beef that is aged in house. The menu includes steakhouse staples like crab cakes, shrimp cocktail, and creamed spinach. New world wine lovers will appreciate the deep list of California cabernet sauvignons. 1F Roppongi Duplex ...

Feb 13, 2014 | No Comments | 2,482 views
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Word of Mouth

Belgian fries, flammkuche and Scottish brew come to town

Jan 15, 2014 | No Comments | 2,766 views
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Word of Mouth

Drink with penguins, whip up some nabe, or get someone to make it for you

Dec 12, 2013 | No Comments | 2,305 views
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Word of Mouth

The latest dish on food and drink in the big city

Nov 13, 2013 | No Comments | 2,159 views
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Word of Mouth

Bursting bulbs of flavor

Feb 26, 2013 | No Comments | 1,672 views
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Word of Mouth

Even Goldilocks and the three bears would be able to find the right portions at Akiba Curry Kojo (4-8 Kanda Hirakawa-cho, Chiyoda-ku; www.akiba-curry.com). Rice sizes go by milli (180g), regular (300g), mega (450g), and giga (600g), with 13 curries including sweetened allergen-free children’s curry (¥500) and dynamic curry (¥2,500)—a mound of tera-rice topped with prawn, ...

Jan 6, 2012 | No Comments | 1,293 views
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Word of Mouth

Support new opportunities for differently-abled people at Hinatabokko (4-31-23 Honcho, Funabashi-shi, Chiba; www.meturl.com/hinatabokko). This friendly café, one of a slew of initiatives by advocates from charity organization Chiba MD Econet, offers you a curry set with coffee (¥650-1,500), made by people who would be unlikely to find such work elsewhere. The sets come in colorful ...

Jan 6, 2012 | No Comments | 720 views
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Word of Mouth

Push for your favorite K-food at Kanryu Gourmet Festa (Yoyogi Park Event Square, Jan 7, 9am-8pm; Jan 8, 9am-5pm; www.hangfes.com), a two-day festival to elect the best Korean food in Japan. A hundred food stalls will peddle their signature dishes, with thousands of visitors casting their vote on the premises online to decide the Grand ...

Jan 5, 2012 | No Comments | 1,125 views
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Word of Mouth

Ever had a Christmas feast in pitch darkness? Blindfold dining event Kurayami Shokudo, previously reviewed by Metropolis (http://meturl.com/rr917), returns Dec 9-23 at Tanger (1-5-48 Takanawa, Minato-ku). Upon entering the world without light, surrender to the poetic narration guiding your full course meal with wine (¥9,860). Some Japanese is preferred, but curiosity and hunger for inspiration ...

Dec 1, 2011 | No Comments | 883 views
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Word of Mouth

Eat seasonal botan nabe (boar hot pot) in Mejiro at Anzai (3-1-1 Shimo-Ochiai, Shinjuku-ku; www.gibier-anzai.com), a house-turned-restaurant where the hunter/chef only serves one group (four to ten) per day. Aside from the boar, the full course (¥6,000-¥7,000 pp) includes low-pesticide veg, noodles to cook in the rich broth, and sweets. Lucky punters can try boar ...

Dec 1, 2011 | No Comments | 685 views
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Word of Mouth

Hokkaido’s long-established jingisukan restaurant Matsujin has opened its second Tokyo branch (B1 Hitotsugi LIP, 4-3-6 Akasaka, Minato-ku; www.2989.net). The dish of seasoned lamb griddled over a skillet is especially good for the holidays as it can be communally eaten with a large group. Fill up on their 100-minute all-you-can-eat-and-drink meals (from ¥4,500) without stressing over ...

Dec 1, 2011 | No Comments | 735 views
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Word of Mouth

Relax to the max at Chano-ma (2F Za House, 1-34-17 Ebisu-Nishi, Shibuya-ku; http://chano-ma.jp), a restaurant that lets you take off your shoes and stretch your legs on the white mattresses lining the walls. This baby-friendly cafe is a popular place for parents with toddlers, but it’s surprisingly quiet—serving as a date spot as well as ...

Nov 17, 2011 | No Comments | 912 views
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Word of Mouth

The ANA Intercontinental Hotel Tokyo (1-12-33 Akasaka, Minato-ku; www.anaintercontinental-tokyo.jp/e) will be loaded up during November with Hokkaido’s seasonal seafood, such as taraba gani (king crab), salmon and ikura (salmon roe). Their buffet (¥5,700-6,300 adults; ¥2,900-3,000 children) includes paella marine, fried oysters and grilled shrimp, as well as roast beef, grilled lamb, and beef curry. Dessert ...

Nov 17, 2011 | No Comments | 1,007 views
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Word of Mouth

At Yurakucho Sanchoku Inshokugai (International Arcade, 2-1-1 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku; www.sanchoku-inshokugai.com), five restaurants serve dishes made with regional farm-fresh ingredients. Inside the bustling zone under the JR bridge near Yurakucho station, Gyumaru serves Hokkaido-raised wagyu beef, Umakabai dishes up Kumamoto’s specialty horsemeat, Uomaru offers fresh Shizuoka seafood, Shinshu Shinkei serves Nagano chicken, and Nambuya awaits you ...

Nov 17, 2011 | No Comments | 1,513 views
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Word of Mouth

A new foodie hangout, Gotanda Sakura Komichi (1 Nishi-Gotanda, Shinagawa; 03-3477-6086) has appeared underneath the elevated Tokyu Ikegami tracks, between Gotanda and Osaki-Hirokoji station. This 288m2 parking-lot-turned-eatery-alley now harbors eight restaurants doling out food from southwestern Japan: Osakan okonomiyaki and takoyaki, Sanuki udon, and Kurume ramen. There’s also a specialized yakitori-ya serving every chicken giblet ...

Oct 22, 2011 | No Comments | 1,002 views
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Word of Mouth

No need to hide your BBW fetish at Pomeranian, a peripatetic maid café irregularly-run by pioneer pocchari maids—a.k.a. “po-maids”—who are all over BMI 25. Pig out on pork kimchi and hamburger steak (both ¥800), and dig into dairy-based desserts like chichi-shibori (“breast squeezings;” ¥1,000) and chichi-gelato (“breastmilk ice cream;” ¥300)—wittily named after the girls’ trademark ...

Oct 22, 2011 | No Comments | 969 views
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Word of Mouth

A “Whole Day’s Worth of Vegetables” (¥990)—a dozen-plus sautéed seasonal legumes heaped on an iron pan of sizzling curry—is the signature dish of Yasai wo Taberu Curry Camp (B1F-4-19-11 Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku; http://meturl.com/camp). Homemade lassi, 100% mango juice, and herbal tea are only ¥100 extra until 5pm but real carnivores are better going for the BBQ ...

Oct 22, 2011 | No Comments | 1,283 views
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Word of Mouth

Who says toys are just for kids? Certainly not Toique (2k540 Aki-Oka Artisan, 5-9 Ueno, Taito-ku; www.toique.com). Spark your creative juices at this new café-bar in 2k540 Aki-Oka Artisan, a new hotspot for craftspeople underneath the elevated railway tracks between Akihabara and Okachimachi station. It’s an unconventional space—children are not allowed, so as not to ...

Oct 8, 2011 | No Comments | 928 views
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Word of Mouth

Next to a creaky bridge on the Tama River is Gallery Poppo (662-3 Tanazawa, Hatonosu, Okutama-cho, Nishi-Tama-gun; www.gallerypoppo.com), a timber building that looks out to the Hatonosu valley. Forget you’re in Tokyo while you listen to the birds and treat yourself to the limited lunch set (¥1,200), which includes tempeh, eggplant steak with tomato and ...

Oct 8, 2011 | No Comments | 593 views
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Word of Mouth

Amidst the neon-lit love hotel district of Hyakkendana, past the adult toyshops and strip theaters, stands an anachronistic café called Meikyoku Kissa Lion (2-19-13 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku; http://lion.main.jp), which was built in 1926, burnt down in an air raid during WWII, and rebuilt in 1950. Time-travel to the early Showa period as you kick back on ...

Oct 8, 2011 | No Comments | 1,614 views
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Word of Mouth

Having a full-course meal while blindfolded (¥9,830) at Kurayami Shokudo (Akasaka Biz Tower 5-3-1 Akasaka, Minato-ku; http://meturl.com/kurayamishokudo) might give good reason to question the theory that presentation is as important as taste. In pitch darkness, one’s senses sharpen and the appreciation of food increases. Another magical consequence is engaging in conversation you would never normally ...

Sep 22, 2011 | No Comments | 1,126 views
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Word of Mouth

If you feel like indulging in authentic Hawaiian food, Ogo Ono-Loa Hawaii (5F Isomura Bldg, 5-1-4 Akasaka, Minato-ku; www.ogohawaii.com) is the place to go. Loco moco (from ¥700), kalua pig plate (from ¥800), and the spicy tuna poke bowl (from ¥800) come in three sizes, with drinks and desserts available for an additional ¥100, or ...

Sep 22, 2011 | No Comments | 1,568 views
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Word of Mouth

Wouldn’t it be great if the multiform oden, often seen floating in front of conbini counters, were all as delicious and genuine as the ones served at Nimosaku (1-19-2 Tateishi, Katsushika-ku; www.nimosaku.com)? At this izakaya within the narrow streets of the Tateishi Nakamise shopping area, you can eat unusual oden ingredients (from ¥100) such as ...

Sep 22, 2011 | No Comments | 797 views
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Word of Mouth

Open weekends only and plump in the middle of a residential area, anyone dining at Nichiyoan (7-13-2 Shibamata, Katsushika-ku; http://meturl.com/nichiyoan) is either a local or a connoisseur. If you make it there, expect an interior that blends the rustic and the modern, and offers exquisite food with artistic presentation. Recommendations are the coarse ground soba ...

Sep 9, 2011 | No Comments | 790 views
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Word of Mouth

On the tip of Miura Peninsula is Kurobatei (1-9-11 Misaki, Miurashi, Kanagawa; www.kurobatei.com), a unique seafood restaurant that specializes in extravagant tuna dishes. Reserve several days in advance for kabuto-yaki (a whole tuna head that takes five days to grill) and deep-fried eyeball (¥1,575). The handwritten menu of the day is just as extraordinary, including ...

Sep 9, 2011 | No Comments | 1,018 views
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Word of Mouth

Mamushi (pit viper), praised as a panacea for all ills, is especially popular as an aphrodisiac. However, several hundreds of Chinese medicine shops that served mamushi dishes in Tokyo before WWII are long gone. Fortunately, three survive, one of which is Kyumeido (4-4-5 Higashi-Ueno Taito-ku; http://kyumei-do.com). Inside this 100-year-old oriental drug store, a kampo doctor ...

Sep 9, 2011 | No Comments | 797 views
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Word of Mouth

Why compromise with soggy chain-store ten-don (tempura-topped rice bowl) when you can get a fresh and filling tempura experience? Kanda Tendonya (1-22 Jinbocho, Kanda, Chiyoda-ku; http://meturl.com/kandatendonya) is a paradise for the indecisive, with just three choices on the menu: ten-don (¥600) with shrimp, squid, fish, veggie, nori tempura, and ebi ten-don (¥850) with three shrimp, ...

Aug 25, 2011 | No Comments | 1,067 views
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Word of Mouth

Competitive eaters would be hard pushed to find a bang for the buck lunch in Roppongi—unless they stumble upon off-the-beaten-path teishokuya such as Nanaban (1-4-14 Nishi-Azabu, Minato-ku; http://meturl.com/7ban). There, even the most accomplished gurgitators can find their prize-winning fodder. Nanaban’s “one-coin” set meals—all ¥500—come with your choice of popular and homestyle main dishes, such as ...

Aug 25, 2011 | No Comments | 1,020 views
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Word of Mouth

Rice Curry Manten (1-54 Jinbocho, Kanda, Chiyoda; http://meturl.com/currymanten) deserves manten (a perfect score) for its voluminous, great-value curry rice topped with juicy pork cutlet (¥600). Shumai curry (¥550; ¥650 with croquette), wiener curry (¥550), and jumbo curry with all the toppings (¥1,000) are popular among the regular horde of salarymen and students. The entertainment comes ...

Aug 25, 2011 | No Comments | 1,428 views
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Word of Mouth

Catering to the booming number of lone diners, Yakiniku Hitori (Ebato Bldg, 6-8-17 Ueno, Taito-ku; http://meturl.com/yakinikuhitori) has opened a self-grill meat joint specifically for the urban ohitorisama. Once seated at one of the 25 booths, fill out the order slip from the menu, press the bell and hand it to the waiter. Beef tongue (¥250), ...

Aug 11, 2011 | No Comments | 1,232 views
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Word of Mouth

Get your clam’s worth at Kaisaku (1-6-5 Azumabashi, Sumida-ku; http://meturl.com/kaisaku), a renowned marine mollusk-specialized restaurant. Order assorted sashimi (¥2,500) or single orders of seasonal gastropods (from ¥600-¥3,500) like Japanese babylon, horned turban, periwinkle and abalone. Bivalves such as Chinese mactra, blood cockle, geoduck, heart clam and pen shell will boost your glycogen level and replenish ...

Aug 11, 2011 | No Comments | 761 views
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Word of Mouth

The ultimate green food, midori ramen (¥700) was launched at Yamate Ramen Anan (5-23-11 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku; http://yamate-ramen.com) in mid-July. The noodle shop became a pioneer in adding midori mushi (euglena) powder to its pork broth soup, an ingredient currently gaining a major spotlight in Japan as “the food and fuel of the future.” Each bowl ...

Aug 11, 2011 | No Comments | 1,580 views
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Word of Mouth

There are plenty of restaurants that serve tantanmen, the Japanese version of a spicy noodle soup that originated in Szechuan, China—but Doraichi (2-12-5 Minami Azabu, Minato-ku; http://www.doraichi.com) is by far one of the best in the metropolis. Regulars queue for their original soup-less shirunashi tantanmen (¥900) topped with scallion, spicy miso flavored minced meat and ...

Jul 28, 2011 | No Comments | 1,471 views
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Word of Mouth

Order from 37 curries at the appropriately named 37 Curry (B1F Hollywood Beauty Plaza, Roppongi Hills, 6-4-1 Roppongi; www.37steakhouse.com/37curry). Their roux, made of 37 spices and chunks of 21-day-aged Black Angus beef, comes with white rice (from ¥830). Choose your own golden combo by selecting from 17 different toppings such as onion rings, fried chicken, ...

Jul 28, 2011 | No Comments | 1,605 views
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Word of Mouth

Although the poison in the blood of unagi (eel) requires it to be well done, Kawasho (1511-1 Kanasugi, Matsubushimachi, Kita-katsushika-gun, Saitama; http://kawashou.net) has pioneered a safe method to prepare it raw. They can uniquely prepare unasashi, or eel sashimi (¥1,200), with a texture similar to that of fugu and velvety toro, or fatty tuna. Other ...

Jul 28, 2011 | No Comments | 962 views
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Word of Mouth

Off the beaten path of Aoyama Dori, a hole in the wall izakaya, Nakanishi (5-6-7 Minami-Aoyama, Minato; http://meturl.com/nakanishi), serves draught beer for ¥210 on weekdays and ¥290 on weekends. Sours and shochu are ¥380 and all other beverages are less than ¥500 a glass. Their specialty is handmade udon noodles (¥300) or udonsuki hot pot ...

Jul 15, 2011 | No Comments | 1,909 views
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Word of Mouth

You don’t necessarily need to flock to Yokohama’s Chinatown with the tourists to get your fix of authentic Chuka ryori. Instead, economically minded gourmands should check out Eiri (1-2-6 Belle Maison Ikebukuro, Toshima-ku ; http://meturl.com/eiri) for some genuine, voluminous and surprisingly low-priced Chinese food. For dinner, several course meals are available for groups of three ...

Jul 15, 2011 | No Comments | 728 views
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Word of Mouth

Even the biggest skeptic of chain restaurants can be satisfied with the cost-benefit ratio at Uokin (Daini Fuji Bldg, 3-18-3 Shinbashi, Minato-ku; http://meturl.com/uokin), an always-packed izakaya chain located in salaryman heaven, close to the heaps of other bars and brasseries clustered around the railroad underpass near Shinbashi station. Order their specialty, sashimi santenmori (three assorted ...

Jul 15, 2011 | No Comments | 1,408 views
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Word of Mouth

Bakamon (2F Chitose Kaikan, 13-8 Udagawacho, Shibuya; http://meturl.com/bakamon) is the only sakura niku, or horsemeat, specialty restaurant in Shibuya Niku Yokocho (“meat alley”) where 16 lively izakaya crowd together. They proudly serve a great deal of only fresh, non-frozen meat at reasonable prices. An assortment of three kinds of basashi (horse sashimi) served with special ...

Jul 15, 2011 | No Comments | 1,267 views
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Word of Mouth

Deep fried crocodile (¥450), ostrich sashimi (¥680), raw deer meat (¥980), grilled frog’s legs (¥600), buffalo tail (¥1,280), dove (¥1,280), chick (¥980), mola mola (¥880) and rabbit (¥450) is not a description of mayhem at the zoo. It’s a typical menu at the aptly named Chinjuya (2F Minato Kosan Bldg 3, 1-45 Noge, Naka-ku, Yokohama; ...

Jun 30, 2011 | No Comments | 1,032 views
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Word of Mouth

Fresh and vivid vegetables chicly displayed at the storefront of Bistro Hachiuta (38-3 Udagawacho, Shibuya, http://meturl.com/hachiuta) are delivered from a contract farm in Komae City. Some of their popular dishes include steamed vegetables with bagna càuda sauce (¥840), mayo shrimp with crushed walnut (¥900), gyusuji nikomi (braised sinewy beef on tofu; ¥650) and misto di ...

Jun 30, 2011 | No Comments | 993 views
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Word of Mouth

Over 600 authentic and exotic dishes cooked by a prestigious chef with the highest rank of Chinese national qualification are served at Shanghai Shao-tsu (1-3-10 Kabukicho, Shinjuku; http://shanghai-xiaochi.com). In celebration of their 17th anniversary, ten selected foods (from ¥1,000) and shaoxingjiu (alcohol made from glutinous millet; ¥1,800) are half price during happy hour (5:30-8pm and ...

Jun 30, 2011 | No Comments | 1,052 views
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Word of Mouth

Ocean Harvest Cocomo (2F Kamakura Courthouse, 2-8-8 Hase, Kamakura, Kanagawa; http://oceanharvest-cocomo.com), is an oyster bar and restaurant with a superb location for the summer season. Relax on the sofa or at the counter, where you can ponder the panoramic view of the Yuigahama beach while tasting their homemade, oven-fresh “milk of the sea” pizza (¥1,570). ...

Jun 16, 2011 | No Comments | 976 views
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Word of Mouth

Ganbare Nippon Baniku Dojo Bakuro (1F Takeshima Bldg, 3-4-8 Kanda; http://meturl.com/bakurou)—no relation to the charity of the same name—is a restaurant specialized in sakura-niku; a culinary term for baniku, or horse meat. Must-tries include the glorious five-type basashi or horse meat sashimi (¥1,680), first-rate marbled basashi (¥880) and heart sashimi ¥550. There are also various ...

Jun 16, 2011 | No Comments | 658 views
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Word of Mouth

Blueberry roughy, mirror dory and mahi-mahi are just a few unusual fish varieties—or zako—you won’t find at Tsukiji. Instead, head straight for Zako Mania (1/B1F Jyugobankan Bldg, 15-5 Ekimae-Honcho, Kawasaki; http://meturl.com/zakomania), open last April. Signature dishes include assorted sashimi, (¥1,890 per 3-4 servings), grilled mola mola offal (¥480) and steamed clams (¥680). Salmon roe fanatics ...

Jun 16, 2011 | No Comments | 1,185 views
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Word of Mouth

Quantity meets quality, or should we say “meats” quality, at Korean Dining Vegiton (B1F Active Roppongi, 1-2-3 Nishi-Azabu; http://meturl.com/vegiton)—a sister shop of pork specialty restaurant Tontokoton. For ¥1,000, you can stuff yourself with meaty lunch meals such as an all-you-can-eat yakiniku set with juicy pork. The dinner menu offers rare and farm-fresh dishes such as ...

Jun 2, 2011 | No Comments | 1,133 views
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Word of Mouth

Medicinal curry? A researcher on stress relief opened Jinenjo (5-9-25 Yanaka, Taito-ku; http://jinenjo-curry.jp) in 1987 to serve healthy curry that combats fatigue, mood disorder, lost appetite, insomnia and other side-effects of contemporary life. Among the ingredients in this curried panacea are eight vegetables such as the eponymous jinenjo (Japanese indigenous yam), 11 Indian spices and ...

Jun 2, 2011 | No Comments | 923 views
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Word of Mouth

Watch out for flying noodles at Ramen Fuujin (1-93 Sakae, Inamachi, Kita-Adachi-gun, Saitama; http://meturl.com/fuujin). Order a second round of noodles (¥120) and the owner/chef pitches freshly boiled ramen from his strainer to a trained server standing at your table, who expertly catches it with a pair of chopsticks and plate and slides it gracefully into ...

Jun 2, 2011 | No Comments | 914 views
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Word of Mouth

With thousands of soba shops ranging from expensively exquisite to cheap and mediocre, it’s only at a rare spot like Yabuchu (6-1-5 Shibamata, Katsushika-ku; http://yabuchu.fc2web.com) where you can fill up with fresh, made-from-scratch buckwheat noodles and still be wallet-friendly. Cold soba starts at ¥600—and you can triple it for an extra ¥200. You won’t be ...

May 19, 2011 | No Comments | 808 views
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Word of Mouth

If you’ve ever been disappointed with overpriced, tiny portions of Japanese-style “Chinese food,” then Amur Chinese Dining Hitoekizoku (1F Nakada Bldg, Nishi-Kameari, Katsushika-ku; 03-3603-6118) is for you. A typical shitamachi old-town haunt, this small, chic restaurant is a bit off-center. You could adopt the ways of a hitoekizoku (a commuter who walks an extra train ...

May 19, 2011 | No Comments | 955 views
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Word of Mouth

“Morning wood” is something gentlemen have when they wake up. It’s also the translation of Asadachi (1-2-14 Nishi-Shinjuku; http://meturl.com/asadachi), a hole-in-the-wall food hut whose specialty is extraordinary stamina food. As one of the cluster of ramshackle izakaya in Shomben Yokocho (“Piss Alley”)—now known more poetically as Omoide Yokocho (“Memory Lane”)—Asadachi offers seasonal treats from across ...

May 19, 2011 | No Comments | 3,295 views
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Word of Mouth

Customize your pasta and salad at Gaston & Gaspar (1F Art Shell, 7-4-4 Roppongi, Minato-ku; http://gastonandgaspar.com)—the first of its kind in Japan—which opened March 30. For lunch, devise your selection from 15 different types of pasta, six choices of sauce and a dozen toppings, and the chef will whip it up for ¥1,260—which includes oven-fresh ...

May 6, 2011 | No Comments | 1,840 views
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Word of Mouth

+ green—pronounced “and green”—a newly-opened organic vegetarian-based restaurant, run by Dream Studio and located near Komazawa Park, targets health-conscious gourmands (1-2-31 Komazawa, Setagaya-ku; www.and-green.jp). Its natural wood and brick interior creates a warm, relaxing atmosphere. Organic sandwich du jour (¥480), seasonal vegetable terrine (¥950), cabbage soup (¥1,200), organic beer and freshly-squeezed fruit juice are just ...

May 6, 2011 | No Comments | 933 views
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Word of Mouth

Multi-ethnic restaurant Bistro Hitsujiya (2F Oohashi Bldg, 1-59-1 Yoyogi, Shibuya-ku; http://hitujiya.ddo.jp) offers a mini-global tour of exotic flavors. Suggested by the name (hitsuji = sheep)—the restaurant’s specialty is raw mutton in two sizes: small (¥580) and medium (¥1,580). If you prefer your meat cooked, try spare ribs smoked in sakura bark (¥840), with Afghanistan-style steak ...

May 6, 2011 | No Comments | 2,202 views
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Word of Mouth

Bar ya neema (3F Ishii Bldg,2-5-7 Ueno, Taito-ku; www.bar-ya-neema.com) is an African bar with extreme eating options for Epicureans. Opened at the end of February, their crocodile curry (with real croc tongue) and zebra penne demand your attention. Dishes that are less wild, but nonetheless exotic, include couscous and savanna cereal. If you’re intimidated by ...

Apr 21, 2011 | No Comments | 971 views
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Word of Mouth

Lifestyle brand Diesel has turned its hand to pleasing the palate with the food and drinks available at Glorious Chain Café (Cocoti 1F, 1-23-16 Shibuya; www.gloriouschaincafe.jp). The restaurant is based in the doorway of the Shibuya store on Meiji Street. Apart from the bounteous BLT hamburger—with smoky bacon—and comfort classics such as eggs Benedict, there ...

Apr 21, 2011 | No Comments | 1,337 views
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Word of Mouth

Décor that features a prize chandelier imported from Harrods London adds to the pride of Tenkuu no Kanade (Shinjuku Peace Building 7F, 3-34-11 Shinjuku; 03-5367-3288). Cast your eye around the low lighting, red tablecloths, exquisitely framed mirrors and rough, rustic brickwork on the walls and you will have no trouble believing it. The restaurant specializes ...

Apr 21, 2011 | No Comments | 784 views
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Word of Mouth

There’s really only four letters you need to know about Masa (1-28-3 Aobadai, Meguro-ku; 03-6303-4527): M-E-A-T. At Nakameguro’s newest steak house, chefs pay homage to the cow in all its forms, from hire and harami to rib roast and handmade hamburger patties—all from 100% Aussie beef. Hamburger toppings cover the bases from demi-glace sauce (¥1,050) ...

Apr 7, 2011 | No Comments | 801 views
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Word of Mouth

There’s plenty to explore among the dozens of new restaurants in the new Futakotamagawa Rise complex—such as Spice Market, the latest outlet from the popular Rigoletto restaurant chain (2-21-1 Tamagawa, Setagaya-ku; www.rigoletto.jp). This upscale eatery bills itself as “Paris meets Garden of Eden,” serving an idyllic array of tapas dishes, hand-made pastas and pizzas. Signature ...

Apr 7, 2011 | No Comments | 874 views
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Word of Mouth

As springtime blossoms and the city’s riverside cafés get populated, beat the crowds to hotspots like Nakameguro and Tamagawa by heading over to the other side of town. Cielo y Rio, set to open its doors in early April (2-15-5 Kuranomae, Taito-ku; www.cieloyrio.com), is located along the Sumida River and offers views of the nearly ...

Apr 7, 2011 | No Comments | 1,208 views
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Word of Mouth

Tokyo’s newest theme restaurant, King of the Pirates (5F Aqua City Odaiba, 1-7-1 Daiba, Minato-ku; http://meturl.com/pirate), unfurled its Jolly Roger and set sail from Odaiba on February 25. Greeting diners in the nautical-themed interior are hoards of gold and jewelry—just make sure to avoid the skeletons. The food menu is highlighted by Western-style dishes like ...

Mar 17, 2011 | No Comments | 2,066 views
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Word of Mouth

Connoisseurs of high-end Chinese cooking won’t want to miss the all-you-can-eat dim sum promotion at the classy Chinaroom in the Grand Hyatt Tokyo (www.tokyo.grand.hyatt.com; 03-4333-8785). For just ¥3,900 per person, diners can enjoy a full array of steamed buns, pancakes and dozens of other dishes. The meal kicks off with a daily dim sum selection, ...

Mar 17, 2011 | No Comments | 939 views
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Word of Mouth

Two of Tokyo’s busiest train stations have unveiled a pair of new shopping and dining complexes. Ecute Ueno is home to six restaurants, ranging from nicely appointed soba shop Kyohka (03-5826-5620) to Midori no Kitchen (http://meturl.com/mkitchen), which showcases farm-fresh vegetables in dishes like ginger-fried pork and veggie curry. At the other end of the Yamanote ...

Mar 17, 2011 | No Comments | 1,312 views
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Word of Mouth

Billing itself as a “dining café,” Home (5-11-1 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku; http://cafehome.jp) celebrates the spirit of Italy with imported delicacies like mozzarella cheese, olives and prosciutto. The lunch buffet features a selection of soups, pasta, grilled chicken and more (¥1,300), and at night there’s a full menu of appetizers, main dishes and desserts—everything for under ¥1,400. ...

Mar 10, 2011 | No Comments | 769 views
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Japan’s recent infatuation with gyu-nabe hotpots means that there’s an increasing availability of premium “A4”- and “A5”-grade Kuroge wagyu. Taking advantage of this surplus is Bistro Ushibenkei (3-6-1 Shimbashi, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e620724), which matches an inventive array of beef dishes with several varieties of wines by the glass. Diners can enjoy carpaccio of four types of ...

Mar 10, 2011 | No Comments | 797 views
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The owners of Akihabara curry restaurant Party Party Carolina (4-14-1 Soto-kanda, Chiyoda-ku; http://meturl.com/carolina) see themselves as warriors in Tokyo’s culinary battleground. “We covertly entered the Akihabara scene selling bento,” they say. “And now, our bento battalion has finally acquired a home base.” A half-dozen varieties of curry are available, including fresh tomato and avocado (¥880), ...

Mar 10, 2011 | No Comments | 1,074 views
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The recent move of Metropolis HQ to the outskirts of Roppongi means that we’ve had the chance to reacquaint ourselves with a recently opened favorite: Turkish restaurant Anatolia (3-13-10 Roppongi, Minato-ku; www.anatolia.jp). Located on the main Gaien-Higashi Dori drag near TGI Friday’s, this restaurant makes up in scrumptiousness what it lacks in space. Pick up ...

Mar 3, 2011 | No Comments | 1,333 views
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With most ramen shops, you know exactly what in for: noodles, broth and a counter to eat them on. Not at Umebachi. This newly opened Shibuya restaurant (2-28-2 Dogenzaka, Shibuya-ku; 03-3461-3002) is a spot where you can kick back and take your time, and women won’t be horrified to visit by themselves. The owners are ...

Mar 3, 2011 | No Comments | 887 views
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Sure, we all love quiche Lorraine and quiche florentine, but how about quiche with kinpira, chicken curry or sweet potato? All those and more are on offer at newly opened Le Poussin in Ebisu (1-31-10 Ebisu, Shibuya-ku; 03-5424-6522). And unlike traditional quiches, these vegetable-filled pies here are high on the health quotient. Open since January ...

Mar 3, 2011 | No Comments | 1,289 views
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How much does the owner of Kita no Daisougen love ramen? So much that he spent five years tasting more than 1,000 varieties in his hometown of Sapporo. Now he’s opened his own chain of shops specializing in miso ramen, with two venues in Tokyo (3-14-1 Akasaka, Minato-ku; 3-31-17 Kami-Igusa, Suginami-ku). Kita no Daisougen sets ...

Feb 17, 2011 | No Comments | 1,296 views
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The newest contender in Tokyo’s increasingly crowded Mexican restaurant scene is Hacienda del Cielo, located just steps from the Daikanyama Address (9F, 10-1 Sarugakucho, Shibuya-ku; http://modern-mexicano.jp/hacienda). Specialties of the house include tacos al pastor (¥700 for two), queso fundido (¥900) and the semi-dried beef jerky known as cecina (¥800-¥2,000). Small platillos, including ceviche, quesadillas and ...

Feb 17, 2011 | No Comments | 10,982 views
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Inexpensive skewers in an intimate setting with a copious selection of cheap booze—that’s the idea behind Dora-Ichi, located in Tokyu Plaza near bustling Kamata station (7-70-1 Nishi-Kamata, Ota-ku; 03-6313-4306). Among the 30 varieties of kushi-age on offer are renkon (¥100), sasami (¥150) and gyu-katsu (¥180). Dora Ichi also serves up a selection of kushi-oden, including ...

Feb 17, 2011 | No Comments | 1,103 views
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High-end sushi in a shitamachi train station? Sounds unlikely, but that’s the story behind Maguro Ichidai (3F, 7-1-1 Ueno, Taito-ku; 03-5826-5621), a new 14-seat restaurant in Ueno’s Ecute complex. The specialty of the house is top-quality hon-maguro, and the menu is crowned by the Maguro Ippon Don (¥1,500), a one-of-a-kind rice bowl featuring every part ...

Jan 20, 2011 | No Comments | 950 views
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Honpo (4-2-2 Akasaka, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g960801) is a popular “all-you-can-eat izakaya” from Kobe that’s just arrived in Tokyo. But banish thoughts of dull dishes and second-rate ingredients—the menu features more than 20 homemade items that are entirely additive-free. And at just ¥2,000 for 90 minutes of unlimited grub, it’s perfect for these recessionary times. Washoku staples ...

Jan 20, 2011 | No Comments | 747 views
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Just the thing to get us through the coldest days of winter: home-style soup from Chowders. Available at six cafes around town and for purchase online, the menu includes Boston clam chowder, seafood bisque, roasted tomato chowder and many others—42 in all. Authentically spiced and perfectly textured, the recipes get the thumbs up from Metropolis ...

Jan 20, 2011 | No Comments | 1,446 views
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The Japanese obsession with yakitori is taken to scintillating heights at newly opened Ginza Rikyu (8-3-11 Ginza, Chuo-ku; www.ginza-rikyu.com). Serving exclusively cochin birds shipped in daily from Nagoya, the grill is fueled by Kinshu bincho-zumi, a high-quality charcoal made from ubame oak. The full array of standard yakitori skewers—prepared by a chef with 18 years ...

Dec 2, 2010 | No Comments | 1,160 views
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For the third year in a row, the Tokyo Michelin guide has confirmed what most locals already know: this is the world’s best city for dining. The newly released 2011 edition of the venerable guidebook awards the top rank of three stars to a whopping 14 restaurants—three more than the previous edition, and four more ...

Dec 2, 2010 | No Comments | 953 views
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Garu is a recently opened izakaya specializing in offbeat meat dishes (10F, 1-19-11 Nishi-Shinjuku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e991601). The house original Garu nabe is a hotpot of beef, chicken and pork motsu with a tomato base (¥1,780), and diners can also try horse, chicken and beef sashimi (¥1,800 for a sampler). Other interesting dishes include homemade soymilk cheese ...

Dec 2, 2010 | No Comments | 891 views
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Ginza has been all abuzz of late over the grand re-opening of Mitsukoshi’s landmark department store (www.mitsukoshi.co.jp). Among the new venues on the dining floors is Gyunta (www.gyunta.com; 03-6228-6915), the Tokyo sister shop to a popular Kobe okonomiyaki restaurant. Long a favorite with locals, Gyunta promises to bring the “true Kansai flavor” to Tokyo with ...

Oct 14, 2010 | No Comments | 1,803 views
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If you’ve been wanting to indulge in a classic kaiseki-style feast—but have been put off by the sky-high prices—then head to Totojin (3-2-6 Kanda-Surugadai, Chiyoda-ku; www.totojin.net). This newly opened restaurant is offering a full seasonal course dinner for just ¥3,675. Diners can enjoy a succession of raw, steamed and grilled dishes, plus rice, soup and ...

Oct 14, 2010 | No Comments | 984 views
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Local foodies will relish the chance to try exciting American cuisine when David Varley visits the Four Seasons Tokyo Hotel at Marunouchi. Varley, the executive chef at Michael Mina’s popular Bourbon Steak restaurant in Washington, DC, will serve dishes like chopped fatty tuna with anchovy broth and caviar; smoked venison with celery and matsutake; and ...

Oct 14, 2010 | No Comments | 1,256 views
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The most hotly anticipated restaurant debuts of the season take place this weekend at The Ritz-Carton, Tokyo (www.ritzcarlton.com; 9-7-1 Akasaka, Minato-ku). The sky-high space formerly occupied by Forty-Five restaurant has been split into a pair of new venues: Azure 45 offers seasonal French seafood with ingredients sourced not just from Tsukiji, but from the renowned ...

Sep 2, 2010 | No Comments | 1,956 views
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Irish pub Seamus O’Hara (3-12-3 Meguro, Meguro-ku; www.seamus-ohara.com) celebrates its third birthday with a two-day bash on the weekend of September 18-19. The popular hangout will host concerts by Irish bands The Boys of Borstal on Saturday and Mutiny on Sunday. But a lot more than music is on offer: pints and cocktails are just ...

Sep 2, 2010 | No Comments | 1,016 views
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If October seems too long to wait to get your Deutsche on, stop by the German Beer Garden at Tokyo Midtown (www.tokyo-midtown.com). The outdoor cafe runs through September 26, from 4-10pm on weekdays and 11am-10pm weekends. Revelers can enjoy quality imports on tap, including Münchner Weisse (¥1,500) and Hofbräu Dunkel (¥1,300), plus bottled brews, German ...

Sep 2, 2010 | No Comments | 1,164 views
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Opened on August 1 in Ginza, Tsubaki Salon Sapporo (7-2-17 Ginza, Chuo-ku; 03-6255-6767) is “a place to taste the quality of Hokkaido and to experience the richness of Hokkaido’s nature.” Representative dishes from Japan’s far north include potato pizza made from local wheat (¥1,000), spicy curry cooked in a skillet and served with giant cheese ...

Aug 5, 2010 | No Comments | 1,447 views
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Boasting 10,000 fish from each of the seven seas, Mizu no Hoshi (4-8-6 Ueno, Taito-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e551502) is Tokyo’s newest “aqua” restaurant. Diners can surround themselves with soothing waters and tanks full of vibrantly colored sea life while enjoying both Japanese- and Western-style cuisine. The menu is divvied up into sections like “Cold Dishes,” “Sashimi,” “Salads,” ...

Aug 5, 2010 | No Comments | 985 views
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The samurai spirit lives on at Mifune (7-10-13 Nishi-Shinjuku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g953114), a new izakaya modeled after the traditional taverns seen in films like Seven Samurai and Rashomon. Swords and arrows adorn the walls, as do the handwritten scrawls of star actor Toshiro Mifune. The food menu features traditional pub fare like kushiage (¥250), shabu shabu (¥1,380) ...

Aug 5, 2010 | No Comments | 1,065 views
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The Peninsula Tokyo (1-8-1 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku; www.peninsula.com) has unveiled a summertime dining promotion aimed specifically at couples and small groups. Through August 31, Michelin-starred Cantonese eatery Hei Fung Terrace is offering a five-course dinner that includes Peking duck, shark’s fin soup and stir-fried minced duck for ¥22,800 for two people. Classy international restaurant Peter serves ...

Jul 22, 2010 | No Comments | 876 views
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A trio of restaurants from the popular Diamond Dining group are spicing up summer with the hot chili oil known as ra-yu. At grill Marunageya in Ebisu (2-3F, 1-4-16 Ebisu-Minami, Shibuya-ku; 03-5768-4256), chicken wings (¥180), pork salads (¥680) and pot stickers (¥780 for six) all get the ra-yu treatment. Over at Kyushu restaurant Kuro Chochin ...

Jul 22, 2010 | No Comments | 1,274 views
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Slow-food aficionados will want to book a table at Nakameguro’s new Be My Self complex (1-25-1 Aobadai, Meguro-ku; www.bemyself.jp), which, in addition to an organic deli and café, offers health products, aromatherapy, an art gallery and yoga studio. The first floor café serves light meals like bento with focaccia or brown rice (¥950), plus a ...

Jul 22, 2010 | No Comments | 851 views
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Newly opened yakiniku restaurant Kato (2F, 2-6-1 Nishi-Shimbashi, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a479704) offers cuts of premium wagyu at rock-bottom prices. How? The owners purchase their beef whole and carve it up in-house. Kalbi, rosu and harami sell for just ¥1,000 apiece, while tongue is ¥750 and premium kalbi ¥1,500. Kato also offers a wide range of offal ...

Jul 8, 2010 | No Comments | 965 views
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CoComo (11-15 Nihombashi-Tomizawacho, Chuo-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/ga4s900) is a new eatery enlivened by a pan-Asian menu, spacious interior and outdoor terrace. In other words, it’s the perfect place for either an intimate date or a bustling party. The cuisine is sure to please all comers: Indonesian nasi goreng (¥680), Chinese-style grilled shrimp with mayonnaise (¥680), Indian chicken ...

Jul 8, 2010 | No Comments | 894 views
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Chicken wing specialists Tome Teba have just opened their newest Tokyo restaurant in Iidabashi (2F, 2-27 Agebacho, Shinjuku-ku; www.tometeba.jp). The wings—crisp on the outside, juicy on the inside, and dipped in the secret Tome Teba sauce (¥180)—are prepared by cooks who, we’re told, have passed a “strict examination.” The restaurant also serves horse-meat dishes (including ...

Jul 8, 2010 | No Comments | 1,438 views
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Wara is a new bakery with a twist: instead of using flour made from wheat, the bakers use rice. And that’s not all—most of the rice comes from right here in Japan, which means that Wara makes a tiny carbon footprint in addition to supporting local farmers. The Okayama-born chain (www.komekopan.jp) recently opened two shops ...

Jun 24, 2010 | No Comments | 1,512 views
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Opened May 10 in Shinjuku, Pollo (5-10-15 Shinjuku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/ga5b000) “offers a dining experience for groups to enjoy delicious hinaidori dishes at a reasonable price.” The specialties of the house are kushiyaki sticks of the famed Akita-bred chicken, supplemented by an á la carte menu that features a range of Europe-inspired dishes and international wines. A ...

Jun 24, 2010 | No Comments | 904 views
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This just in: the folks at brew-pub T.Y. Harbor in Shinagawa are taking a break from their popular Fourth of July BBQ. The event has become increasingly popular in recent years, but this time around, Independence Day revelers will have to seek their fun elsewhere. But not to worry: T.Y. Harbor (2-1-3 Higashi-Shinagawa; www.tyharborbrewing.co.jp) will ...

Jun 24, 2010 | No Comments | 1,523 views
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Newly opened Kalbi Dojo (2-13-3 Akasaka, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/b457603) brings together the best of casual Japanese and Korean dining. The raucous one-room standing izakaya features gleaming steel-topped tables with built-in yakiniku grills. Cuts of meat range from bone-in beef kalbi (¥980) and marinated pork (¥680) to a 1m-long strip of intestine (¥1,980). A wide variety of ...

Jun 24, 2010 | No Comments | 1,187 views
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Many Tokyo restaurants specialize in seafood, but few of them offer the kind of dishes you’ll find at Wasshoi (8F, 12-8-3 Kotobashi, Sumida-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g985916). This newly opened “kaisen izakaya” serves unusual fare like octopus shabu-shabu (¥1,980) and ebi odorigui (basically, shrimp that’s still alive when you cook it, ¥199). The specialty of the house, though, ...

Jun 10, 2010 | No Comments | 1,161 views
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Seafood is also the name of the game at Hamayaki Taro (14-7-2 Minami-Shinagawa, Shinagawa-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a345901), a cozy new izakaya in Shinagawa. The festive interior, modeled on a beach house, features chochin lanterns and lots of blond wood. Each table has its own gas grill so diners can cook their food just the way they like ...

Jun 10, 2010 | No Comments | 1,023 views
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From the deep blue sea to the fat of the land: Umanami-ya (17-9-2 Shimbashi, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e620714) is one of a few new restaurants in Tokyo to specialize in horsemeat. Delivered daily from a farm in Aomori, the ba-niku is served alongside a renowned domestic breed of chicken known as Shamo-rokku. Prix fixe menus start at ...

Jun 10, 2010 | No Comments | 1,067 views
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If you’ve ever wondered about the cuisine of Tokushima Prefecture—and admit it, you have—then head to Awaodori (2F, 7-2-17 Ginza, Chuo-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g078518), which opened in Ginza on May 11. Local specialties from the Shikoku region include bamboo chikuwa (¥300), sashimi of sea bream (¥780) and a daily changing selection of himono (fried fish, ¥400). Pride ...

May 27, 2010 | No Comments | 2,379 views
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With a casual, design-savvy interior and a menu full of classic noodle dishes, Sobateria (2F, 16-2 Daikanyama-cho, Shibuya-ku; www.tokyosoba.com) is just what its name implies: a cafeteria for soba aficionados. This newly opened eatery in Daikanyama features hand-rolled noodles made with 100 percent unfiltered buckwheat, prepared daily on-site. The menu includes all the standards, from ...

May 27, 2010 | No Comments | 1,047 views
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With 30 varieties of tapas and six paella dishes, Tapas Blanco (1-1-7 Sakuragicho, Naka-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g469931) has the menu of a down-home Spanish pub. But the view out over Yokohama’s gorgeous waterfront is pure Japan. Open since mid-March in the flash new Colotte Mare complex, the bar offers dozens of tapas for ¥300-¥500 each, including garlic ...

May 27, 2010 | No Comments | 1,089 views
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Tokyo’s tapas boom shows no sign of letting up, and the latest cuisine to get the one-plate treatment is… Chinese?!? Open since February, Shigyokuran (3-4-3 Higashi-Azabu, Minato-ku; www.shigyokuran.com) in Azabu-Juban offers a daily changing tapas assortment for ¥1,500. About two dozen hot and cold appetizers are available à la carte for ¥500-¥900, including preserved egg ...

May 20, 2010 | No Comments | 1,276 views
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Debuting May 1 at the Hotel New Otani, Nakajima (4-1 Kioi-cho, Chiyoda-ku; http://meturl.com/nakajima) specializes in the unlikely combination of soba noodles and Western sweets. Which sounds pretty iffy, until you consider the pedigree of the founding chef: Shunsuke Nakajima is an internationally renowned patissier and 33-year Otani veteran whose staff have trained at the hotel’s ...

May 20, 2010 | No Comments | 1,158 views
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Nabe restaurants can be judged by the quality of their broth, and any fine broth starts with good water. That’s why newly opened Nabebula (6F, 2-23-8 Tsuruya-cho, Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama; www.nabebula.com) sources its most important ingredient from natural hot springs in Yamanashi, Saitama and Kagoshima. The onsen water is used in hotpots featuring Mizaki tuna (¥1,980), ...

May 20, 2010 | No Comments | 840 views
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If you thought chocolate was just for dessert, think again. At newly opened Charlotte Chocolate Factory (4-6-1 Kinshicho, Sumida-ku; http://charlotte-factory.com), the menu includes not just cookies, pastries and gelato (from ¥400), but a full line-up of appetizers and entrees that use cacao as a primary ingredient. Enjoy the likes of chocolate-butter chicken (¥1,000), four varieties ...

May 13, 2010 | No Comments | 2,070 views
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Popular restaurant chain Chegoya (www.chegoya.com) prides itself on home-style Korean cuisine. All the usual items are on offer, including kimchi (¥300-¥500), chijimi (¥800-¥2,400), bibimbap (¥770-¥1,050), yakiniku (¥850-¥1,260; set ¥1,980), hotpots (from ¥900) and bulgogi (¥1,000). Specialties of the house include seafood chijimi (¥2,400) and samgyetang, a soup made from whole chicken stuffed with rice, vegetables ...

May 13, 2010 | No Comments | 2,322 views
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The Chinese are coming! The Chinese are coming! With 32 branches in Shanghai, Itamae Sushi R (B1 Joinus, Yokohama station; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/p761802) is a “creative sushi-roll shop” that made its Japan debut in Yokohama on April 28. Original menu items include the salad roll, with avocado, red bell peppers and lettuce, and the “manager’s special,” with ...

May 13, 2010 | No Comments | 975 views
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The Kabukicho red light district is noted for many things—hostess bars and cheap restaurants, to name just two. Now you can combine these pleasures at newly opened Komachi (2-3F, 1-13-10 Kabukicho, Shinjuku-ku; http://meturl.com/komachi). Dubbed a “sexy izakaya,” this 60-seat pub is staffed by fetchingly attired young women who aim to give worn-out salarymen a soothing ...

May 6, 2010 | No Comments | 1,556 views
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Lunchtime at Metropolis HQ has taken on a South-of-the-Border flavor ever since La Fiesta restaurant (www.lafiesta-tokyo.com) began its new delivery service. Available in Roppongi, Aoyama and Nishi-Azabu, the delivery requires a minimum of five orders. Selections include standard Tex-Mex fare like burritos, chimichangas, enchiladas, tacos, fajitas and quesadillas, and if you want the cooks to ...

May 6, 2010 | No Comments | 1,461 views
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An upcoming wine dinner at the Four Seasons Hotel Tokyo at Chinzan-so (www.fourseasons.com/tokyo; 03-3943-2222) promises to be the culinary event of the season. Vintners from 19 of Napa Valley’s premier wineries will be on hand for the festivities on Wednesday, May 19, which also feature a silent auction to benefit Tokyo-based volunteer organization Hands On ...

May 6, 2010 | No Comments | 1,000 views
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Dedicated to “introducing a healthy lifestyle by eating a nutritional breakfast,” Good Morning Café (1-20-3 Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku; www.good-morning-cafe.com) brings wholesome cooking to Sendagaya. The eatery greets (open time: 6am) with fruit salads (with yogurt, ¥600), acai bowls (with granola, banana and yogurt, ¥650), and eggs with toast (¥580). Order up a sampler trio of healthy ...

Apr 29, 2010 | No Comments | 1,956 views
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Japan’s recent obsession with all things related to Ryoma Sakamoto has found its latest expression at Ryoma no Sora (B1, 7-10-5 Nishi-Shinjuku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g600183), a theme izakaya that opened on April 16. The interior features Bakumatsu-era design elements, including traditional goods shipped over from Nagasaki—the city where the legendary samurai founded his elite Kai en Tai ...

Apr 29, 2010 | No Comments | 1,714 views
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Fans of deep-fried, sugary treats can indulge their sweet tooth at Churro Star (5-18-2 Hiroo, Shibuya-ku; http://churrostar.jp), a newly opened shop in Hiroo. Five varieties of churros are available: organic Brazilian sugar, cinnamon sugar (both ¥180), caramel, milk, and chocolate (¥250). All can be ordered à la carte or with ice cream (¥200), sundaes (¥380), ...

Apr 29, 2010 | No Comments | 1,193 views
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If you’re in the neighborhood and want something more wallet-friendly, stop by Tachikichi (3-18-8 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku; www.tachikichi.net), a new standing restaurant-bar that specializes in… pot stickers. Unlike most other gyoza eateries, the cooks here use no garlic in their filling—the better, they say, to bring out the natural sweetness of the meat—and the dumplings weigh ...

Apr 22, 2010 | No Comments | 2,341 views
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Celebrity chef Tsuyoshi Ishii, late of Michelin-starred Monnalisa in Marunouchi, has opened a flash new restaurant in Shibuya. Monolith (2-6-1 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku; www.le-monolith.com) serves up classic French fare in three prix fixe menus at lunch (¥2,835, ¥3,990 and ¥5,880) and dinner (¥6,510, ¥7,875 and ¥10,500). Dishes include shrimp gelée, white asparagus blancmange, scallop ravioli with ...

Apr 22, 2010 | No Comments | 1,252 views
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Venerable ­teppan­ restaurant Harunami (4-3 Tsukudo-cho, Shinjuku-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g746100) has unveiled a trio of discounted dinner plans for spring. The Teppanyaki Course comes with grilled vegetables, seafood, meat, okonomiyaki and yakisoba for just ¥2,625. The Harunami Course, meanwhile, adds a “daily dish” and a choice of Ishigaki beef or Agu pork for ¥3,675. The grand Special ...

Apr 22, 2010 | No Comments | 1,297 views
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The season for enjoying fresh oysters is just about finished in Japan, but plump shellfish are on the menu year-round at Fish House Oyster Bar (1-3-11 Ebisu-Nishi, Shibuya-ku; http://oyster-bar.jp). Enjoy 13 varieties of kaki from all over the world as part of a raw platter (¥280-¥480 per piece), or sample hot dishes like smoked oysters ...

Apr 15, 2010 | No Comments | 1,132 views
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From oysters to tuna: Tokyo Maguro Sakaba (2-22-8 Hatchobori, Chuo-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a000520) is a “fish-market style” eatery that opened just last month in Hatchobori. The concept, say the owners, is to serve high-quality tuna at a reasonable price. Toward that end, whole maguro are sent directly from seaports in Mie, Nagasaki and Iwate, then carved up ...

Apr 15, 2010 | No Comments | 1,121 views
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“Cheap, delicious and nostalgic”—that’s the motto of new chicken specialty restaurant Tori Bancho in Ueno (6-7-18 Ueno, Taito-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e378300). This eatery seeks to replicate the feel of an old-school izakaya from the Showa era. Although you’ll find traditional charcoal-grilled items on the menu, the chefs cook their birds in just about every way imaginable. The ...

Apr 15, 2010 | No Comments | 1,372 views
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Straight out of Waikiki and into Harajuku comes the fabled Honolulu diner Eggs ’n Things (4-30-2 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku; www.eggsnthingsjapan.com). Since opening in 1974, this Hawaiian hotspot has attracted a devoted following among locals—and a downright rabid following among Japanese tourists. The new location offers the same all-day breakfast menu as the original, including specialties like ...

Apr 8, 2010 | 2 Comments | 3,761 views
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Four Mediterranean-style restaurants gathered into one izakaya-style seafood spot—that’s the idea behind the newly opened Ebisu Fish Center (1-7-8 Ebisu-Minami, Shibuya-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a687109). With an interior designed to resemble a seafood market, this complex aims to be “the liveliest and brightest on the block, to lift up people’s spirits from the economic recession.” We’re not sure ...

Apr 8, 2010 | No Comments | 1,360 views
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Word of Mouth

Vegetarians, take note: it’s not too late to chow down on the limited-time-only menu of meatless ramen and gyoza at noodle shop Kagetsu (www.kagetsu.co.jp). The popular chain has run an annual vegetarian promotion since 2006, and this year’s event finishes on April 11. The ramen is made from a salt-based stock that’s free of meat ...

Apr 8, 2010 | No Comments | 986 views
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Word of Mouth

It’s been five years since chef de cuisine Thierry Voisin arrived at Les Saisons, the Imperial Hotel Tokyo’s flagship restaurant. His debut in 2005 coincided with a dramatic makeover of The Imperial’s Main Building, which included a large-scale renovation of the plush French eatery (www.imperialhotel.co.jp; 03-3539-8087). The Tokyo Michelin Guide has since awarded the restaurant ...

Apr 1, 2010 | No Comments | 2,147 views
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Word of Mouth

The swish new Collette Mare shopping center, which opened last month just steps from JR Sakuragicho station in Yokohama, promises to be a hotspot for foodies as well as shopaholics (1-1-7 Sakuragicho, Naka-ku; www.colette-mare.com). On the first floor, Manoa is the latest Hawaiian eatery from the Zetton/Aloha Table group, offering decent-size loco moco plates and ...

Apr 1, 2010 | No Comments | 2,255 views
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Word of Mouth

Wholesalers must be hurting at the moment, as an increasing number of savvy Tokyo restaurants are opting to buy their ingredients straight from the source. Case in point: Ebisu Shiroh (4-4-7 Ebisu, Shibuya-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/g268724/), which opened in February and gets its seafood and black wagyu beef shipped in every morning from fishing ports and farms ...

Apr 1, 2010 | No Comments | 1,797 views
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Word of Mouth

Hailing from the seafood-rich north of Japan, Otaru Ginza (Pola Ginza Building 10F, 1-7-7 Ginza, Chuo-ku; www.masazushi.co.jp) is the first local branch of a 72-year-old Hokkaido sushi restaurant. Belly up to the L-shaped counter to watch the chefs work their magic, or enjoy some private time with friends and colleagues in one of the semi-private ...

Mar 25, 2010 | No Comments | 2,001 views
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Word of Mouth

If sweets are more your thing, head to the resplendent Ekki Bar & Grill at the Four Seasons at Marunouchi. Through April 7, world champion pastry chef Roger Van Damme of Het Gebaar restaurant in Antwerp will be bring his sophisticated, inventive treats to Tokyo. Damme’s creations range from personal interpretations of standards like crème ...

Mar 25, 2010 | No Comments | 923 views
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Word of Mouth

Head chef Junichi Kohama of newly opened Cul-De-Sac (4-4-16 Nihombashi- Hongokucho, Chuo-ku; ) says his restaurant’s motto is “Gattsuri tabete, gabu-gabu nomu.” Rough translation: Eat up and drink up! The menu at this “men’s bistro” in Nihombashi features big-portioned versions of casual French fare like wine-simmered mussels (¥700), pâté de campagne (¥600), steak-frites (¥1,600), and ...

Mar 25, 2010 | No Comments | 1,051 views
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Word of Mouth

With a ground-central Roppongi Hills location and a menu to warm the heart of any carnivore, 37 Steakhouse & Bar (2F Keyaki Dori Terrace, 6-15-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku; www.37steakhouse.com) calls to mind old-school chophouses in New Y York or Chicago. The spacious, wood-heavy dining room is brightened by airy windows and a glass-enclosed kitchen, with a ...

Mar 18, 2010 | No Comments | 2,600 views
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Word of Mouth

Kagurazaka is known as a hotbed of European cuisine, but newly opened Chamate (3-6-3 Kagurazaka, Shinjuku-ku; www.chamate.jp) brings a Chinese flavor to the neighborhood. The second Tokyo branch of a popular Shanghai teahouse (the first is in Shibuya L Loft), Chamate is run by chef Kazumi Kugo, formerly of renowned local Chinese eateries Ryutenmon (in ...

Mar 18, 2010 | No Comments | 1,429 views
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Word of Mouth

Newly opened yakitori and yakiton shop Omicchan (5-18-6 Kamata, Ota-ku; 03-5703-0722) prides itself on chicken that’s fresh as can be—unlike most restaurants, the cooks here use birds that have been killed the very same day. Pick up some skewers of kawa, negima, tsukune and liver from the takeout window, or head inside for pork skewers ...

Mar 18, 2010 | No Comments | 900 views
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Word of Mouth

With a top-shelf Nishi-Azabu location, a plush interior and a menu boasting the likes of French duck, new restaurant-lounge Vin (B1, 1-2-12 Nishi-Azabu, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/ga0r700) might seem like the playground of the rich and glamorous. Think again. Glasses of wine start at just ¥500, while kushiyaki skewers of chicken, pork and duck go for ¥130-¥220 ...

Mar 11, 2010 | No Comments | 904 views
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Word of Mouth

Something fishy is going on at Hokkai Tokoro Ichiba in Shimbashi: the prices at this newly opened izakaya seem way too low. It turns out the manager uses an independent route to stock fresh vegetables and seafood directly from Tokoro-cho, located in the extreme north of Hokkaido. The result is just-off-the boat fish and farm-fresh ...

Mar 11, 2010 | No Comments | 842 views
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Word of Mouth

Everyone knows that Nobel Prize winners receive a medal, cash and the esteem of millions of people all over world. But who knew that they get a fancy meal thrown in to the bargain? From March 15-20, upscale Scandinavian restaurant Aquavit (www.aquavit-japan.com) in Gaienmae is teaming up with the Embassy of Sweden to serve the ...

Mar 11, 2010 | No Comments | 786 views
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Word of Mouth

Lovers of gourmet breakfast fare will be excited to learn that famed Aussie chef Bill Granger is opening a new restaurant in Yokohama. Known for revolutionizing Australia’s breakfast culture, as well as attracting celebrity customers like Tom Cruise and Leonardo DiCaprio, Granger debuted his first Japan eatery in a beachside Shonan location in 2008. The ...

Mar 4, 2010 | No Comments | 1,092 views
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Word of Mouth

Serving a variety of creative and healthy Chinese dishes, Tanmaru (3-8-7 Roppongi, Minato-ku; 03-3479-3006) is a new Szechuan eatery in a central Roppongi location. The specialties of the house are steamed items served up in bamboo baskets, including a five-vegetable medley (¥800), seafood assortment (¥1,500) and Okinawan pork (¥1,000). A course menu of six steamed ...

Mar 4, 2010 | No Comments | 994 views
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Word of Mouth

“Think global, eat local.” That could be the motto of Chikappa (4-3-6 Ginza, Chuo-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e736201), a newly opened Italian restaurant in Ginza. The menu here may be European, but the chefs source all their ingredients from Kyushu, including beef from Kumamoto, free-range Miyazaki chicken and Saga fruits. Lunch features a buffet of vegetable dishes that ...

Mar 4, 2010 | No Comments | 1,416 views
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Word of Mouth

The most common complaints about French food in Japan are that the portions are too small, the prices too high, and the restaurants too precious. Enter Marine Club (2F, 3-14 Minato-Machi, Naka-ku; www.marine-club.co.jp), a renovated bistro in the Kannai area of Yokohama that offers up authentic French home cooking and wine at reasonable prices. The ...

Feb 25, 2010 | No Comments | 1,207 views
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Word of Mouth

Specializing in “champagne and rolls,” Sora (5F, 4-8-6 Ueno, Taito-ku; www.sora-japan.com) is a flash new dining spot that opened January 31 in Ueno. The funky interior is “inspired by stars and outer space,” with shimmering curtains separating the various dining spaces and otherworldly fish tanks. All customers are presented with a welcome glass of Moët ...

Feb 25, 2010 | No Comments | 950 views
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Word of Mouth

Top-notch Napa wines with seasonal California-inspired cooking—that’s what’s on offer at Food & Wine Amandine in Ebisu (2-10-10 Ebisu-Nishi, Shibuya-ku; www.elegantevita.co.jp/eng). The restaurant offers a lively atmosphere thanks to its open kitchen and jazz BGM; after 10pm, the lights are dimmed and house music fills the air—in keeping with the current trend at hip Napa ...

Feb 25, 2010 | No Comments | 1,597 views
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Word of Mouth

If you want a taste of the finer things in life, just grab some friends and head to newly opened izakaya Kuu in Shinjuku (B1F, 7-9-13 Nishi-Shinjuku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e724600). The cooks here use only high-quality items like organic vegetables, jikkokumai (ten-grain rice), fresh-off-the-boat seafood, free-range Miyazaki chicken and homemade tofu. But Kuu has props as a ...

Feb 18, 2010 | No Comments | 2,058 views
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Word of Mouth

Atelier de Fromage in Minami-Aoyama (3-8-5 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku; http://r.gnavi.co.jp/e891600) bills itself as an “Italian-style restaurant specializing in homemade cheese cuisine.” Open since late November, this is the second branch of a long-established Karuizawa eatery and cheese shop. All the dairy products are made with fresh milk from cows raised on local Nagano grass and water. ...

Feb 18, 2010 | No Comments | 915 views
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Word of Mouth

Located in the business district of Shimbashi, Nepali-Indian restaurant Mandap (2-13-8 Nishi-Shimbashi, Minato-ku; 03-3506-5363) offers izakaya-loving salarymen a chance to expand their culinary repertoire. Lovers of Southeast Asian cuisine, meanwhile, will appreciate nice touches like homemade paneer cheese and naan cooked over charcoal. Dishes include samosa (¥580 for two), cheese naan (¥650), sheek kebab (¥1,000), ...

Feb 18, 2010 | No Comments | 1,325 views
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Word of Mouth

Art on the walls. Warming nabe on the stove. A casual, friendly vibe. Newly opened 2316 in Iidabashi (2-3-16 Koraku, Bunkyo-ku; 03-6801-5778) is an appealing one-room restaurant/café where customers can kick back and enjoy some hearty wintertime cooking. The menu features European-inflected dishes like bouillabaisse (¥1,500) and beef stew (¥1,500), with a tapas selection (sautéed ...

Feb 11, 2010 | No Comments | 0 views
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Word of Mouth

Until now, Tokyoites could experience the fabled hospitality of geisha only at very expensive ryotei restaurants in the roku kagai (“six flower districts”) of Shimbashi, Akasaka, Yoshicho (Nihombashi), Kagurazaka, Asakusa and Mukojima. But a new foreigner-friendly event series brings geisha and other traditional artisans to a wider audience—at a fair price. The Omotenashi Experience features ...

Feb 11, 2010 | No Comments | 2,212 views
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Word of Mouth

One of the capital’s most renowned taiyaki shops has unveiled a new branch in Tokyo station. Sakurake (03-3217-3968) serves up traditional varieties of the fish-shaped, sweet-bean cakes, but also offers innovations like risotto taiyaki, which has the same doughy skin but is filled with creamy rice seasoned with white sauce, demiglace, tomato sauce or curry. ...

Feb 11, 2010 | No Comments | 1,078 views
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Word of Mouth

The classiest Valentine’s Day gift of 2010 is on sale now at Fiorentina Pastry Boutique in the Grand Hyatt Tokyo hotel (6-10-3 Roppongi, Minato-ku; http://tokyo.grand.hyatt.jp). Simply called Mode, the cake was created by Hyatt pátissier Shigeo Hirai, who took the top prize at last year’s prestigious World Chocolate Masters competition in Paris. It’s made with ...

Feb 4, 2010 | No Comments | 3,414 views
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Word of Mouth

If Japanese-style sweets are more your thing, head over to the newest branch of the renowned wagashi chain Kitchoan (2-14-33 Akasaka, Minato-ku; www.kitchoan.jp). Opened on January 20 in Akasaka, the shop offers 40 traditional sweets, including some made with seasonal fruit and others created for specific events and holidays. Iki-amashuku is made from dried persimmon ...

Feb 4, 2010 | No Comments | 889 views
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