Tokyo Travel Guide
Hotels
Nightlife
Restaurants
Art
Itineraries
Weather
Maps

RESTAURANTS

ADJANTA
3-11 Niban-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3264-6955
¥2500 to ¥9000
Imperial Palace District
Indian
User Rating:
Rate It


About 45 years ago the owner of Adjanta came to Tokyo to study electrical engineering and ended up opening a small coffee shop near the Indian Embassy. He started out cooking a little for his friends; now the coffee shop is one of the oldest and best Indian restaurants in town. There's no decor to speak of. The emphasis is on the variety and intricacy of Indian cooking. The curries are hot to begin with, but you can order them even hotter. There's a small boutique in one corner, where saris and imported Indian foodstuffs are for sale. Adjanta is open 24 hours. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Yuraku-cho Line, Koji-machi Eki (Exit 5).


AOI-MARUSHIN
1-4-4 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3841-0110
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Asakusa
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


This is one of the largest tempura restaurant in Tokyo, with six floors of table and tatami seating. This is a family restaurant, so expect lots of food at reasonable prices. Asakusa is a must on any itinerary, and tempura teishoku is the specialty of the district. Aoi-Marushin's location, a few minutes' walk from the entrance to Senso-ji, makes it an obvious choice after a visit to the temple. AE, MC, V. Subway: Ginza and Toei Asakusa lines, Asakusa Eki (Exit 1).


ASHOKA
Pearl Bldg., 2nd floor, 7-9-18 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3572-2377
¥2500 to ¥9000
Shimbashi
Indian
User Rating:
Rate It


The owners of the Ashoka set out to take the high ground -- to provide decor commensurate with a fashionable address. The room is hushed and spacious, incense perfumes the air, the lighting is recessed, the carpets are thick, and the waiters have spiffy uniforms. Floor-to-ceiling windows overlook Chuo-dori, the main street in Ginza. Thali, a selection of curries and other specialties of the house, is served up on a figured brass tray. Khandari nan, a flat bread with nuts and raisins, is excellent. So is chicken tikka, boneless chunks marinated and cooked in the tandoor. All in all, this is a good show for the raj. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Marunouchi and Ginza Lines, Ginza Eki (Exit A4).


ATTORE
1-11-2 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3535-1111
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Ginza
Italian
User Rating:
Rate It


The Italian restaurant of the elegant Hotel Seiyo Ginza, Attore is divided into two sections. The "casual" side, with seating for 60, has a bar counter, banquettes, and a see-through glass wall to the kitchen; its comfortable decor is achieved with track lighting, potted plants, marble floors, and Indian-looking print tablecloths. The "formal" side, with seating for 40, has mauve wall panels and carpets, armchairs, and soft lighting. On either side of the room, you get some of the best Italian cuisine in Tokyo. Chef Katsuyuki Muroi trained for six years in Tuscany and northern Italy and acquired a wonderful repertoire. The menu is simpler and the dishes less expensive on the casual side of the restaurant. Reservations essential. Jacket and tie. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Ginza Line, Kyo-bashi Eki (Exit 2); Yuraku-cho Line, Ginza-Itchome Eki (Exit 7).


BLUE POINT
4-19-19 Shirokanedai, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3440-3928
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Hiro-o
Seafood
User Rating:
Rate It


The name is a bit misleading: neither the restaurant nor the bar at this chic little establishment serves oysters. What they do serve are generous portions of good seafood, at reasonable prices, in an informal trattoria-style setting. The chief appeal, weather permitting, is to dine by candlelight at one of the 10 sidewalk tables, with their blue-and-white checkered oilcloths and the tall French windows behind them. Try the seafood risotto with saffron or the bouillabaisse. Tokyo's well-heeled clubbers love this place. MC, V. Subway: Toei Mita and Namboku lines, Shirokanedai Eki (Exit 1).


CHEZ INNO
3-2-11 Kyo-bashi, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3274-2020
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Ginza
French
User Rating:
Rate It


Chef Noboru Inoue studied his craft at Maxim's in Paris and Les Frères Troisgros in Roanne; the result is brilliant, innovative French food. Try fresh lamb in wine sauce with truffles and finely chopped herbs, or lobster with caviar. The main dining room, with seating for 28, has velvet banquettes, white-stucco walls, and stained-glass windows. Across the street is the elegant Seiyo Hotel -- making this block the locus of the very utmost in Tokyo upscale. Reservations essential. Jacket and tie. AE, DC, V. Closed Sun. Subway: Ginza Line, Kyo-bashi Eki (Exit 2); Yuraku-cho Line, Ginza-Itchome Eki (Exit 7).


CHEZ MATSUO
1-23-15 Shoto, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3465-0610
¥2500 to ¥9000
Shibuya
French
Be the First to Rate It


Chez Matsuo opened here in 1980, in a lovely old two-story Western-style house. The two dining rooms on the first floor, and the private "Imperial Room" on the second, overlook the garden, where you can dine by candlelight on spring and autumn evenings. Owner-chef Matsuo studied as a sommelier in London and perfected his culinary finesse in Paris. His food is nouvelle; the specialty of the house is suprême (breast and wing) of duck. Reservations essential. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Shibuya Eki (Kita-guchi/North Exit for JR Yamanote Line, Ginza subway line, and private rail lines; Exit 5 or 8 for Hanzo-mon subway line).


EDO-GIN

4-5-1 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3543-4401
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Tsukiji
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


In an area that teems with sushi bars, this one maintains its reputation as one of the best. Edo-Gin serves up generous slabs of fish that drape over the vinegared rice rather than perch demurely on top. The centerpiece of the main room is a huge tank, in which the day's ingredients swim about until they are required; it doesn't get any fresher than that! Reservations not accepted. AE, DC, MC, V. Closed Sun. Subway: Hibiya Line, Tsukiji Eki (Exit 1); Toei Oedo Line, Tsukiji-shijo Eki (Exit A1).


FARM GRILL

Ginza Nine 3 Gokan, 2nd floor, 8-5 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5568-6156
Under ¥2500
Ginza
American/Casual
Be the First to Rate It


Tokyo could use a few more restaurants like the Farm Grill, which specializes in innovative California-style cuisine in generous portions at reasonable prices. The focus here is on hearty salads and sandwiches, pasta and rotisserie entrées, and rich desserts. Try the Caesar salad, pasta Malibu, or the house chili. There are more than 90 entries on the wine list, a good percentage of them at ¥1,500 or less. AE, DC, MC, V. No lunch. Subway: JR Yamanote Line and Ginza and Toei Asakusa subway lines: Shimbashi Eki (Exit 5).


GANCHAN
6-8-23 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3478-0092
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Roppongi
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


Although the Japanese prefer their sushi bars immaculately clean and light, they expect yakitori joints to be smoky, noisy, and cluttered -- like Ganchan. There's counter seating only, for about 15, and you have to squeeze to get to the chairs in back by the kitchen. Festival masks, paper kites and lanterns, gimcracks of all sorts, handwritten menus, and greeting cards from celebrity patrons adorn the walls. Behind the counter, the cooks yell at each other, fan the grill, and serve up enormous schooners of beer. Try the tsukune (balls of minced chicken) and the fresh asparagus wrapped in bacon. Ganchan is open from 5:30 PM to 1 AM Monday-Saturday and until 11 PM on Sunday and holidays. V. No lunch. Subway: Hibiya Line, Roppongi Eki (Exit 1A).


HEALTHY KAN
Asahi Roku-ban-cho Mansion, 2nd floor, 6-4 Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3263-4023
¥2500 to ¥6000
Imperial Palace District
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


Beloved by its regular Japanese and gaijin clientele, Healthy Kan serves an array of traditional vegetarian and fish dishes. The daily menu, listed on a white board, offers a complete Japanese meal that includes haigo (brown rice) or soba served either hot or cold depending on the season. For something different, try the tempeh set. A classic Indonesian dish, Kan's tempeh is dressed up to look Japanese. Healthy Kan is a casual place; it's easy to linger over a glass of home-pureed vegetable juice or a piece of homemade cake (desserts run out early, so call ahead to reserve something). The menu is written in English. No credit cards. Closed Sun. Subway: Yuraku-cho Line, Ichigaya Eki (Exit 3).


HEICHINROU

Fukoku Seimei Bldg., 28th floor, 2-2-2 Uchisaiwai-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3508-0555
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Shimbashi
Chinese
User Rating:
Rate It


This branch of one of the oldest and best restaurants in Yokohama is on the top floor of a prestigious office building about five minutes' walk from the Imperial Hotel, and it commands a spectacular view of Hibiya Koen and the Imperial Palace grounds. Be sure to call ahead to reserve a table by the window. The cuisine is Cantonese; pride of place goes to the kaisen ryori, an elaborate multicourse meal of steamed sea bass, lobster, shrimp, scallops, abalone, and other seafood dishes. The decor is rich but subdued, lighting is soft, and table linens are impeccable. Much of the clientele comes from the law offices, securities firms, and foreign banks on the floors below. Jacket and tie. AE, DC, MC, V. Closed Sun. Subway: Toei Mita Line, Uchisaiwai-cho Eki (Exit A6).


HIGO-NO-YA

AG Bldg. B1, 3-18-17 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3423-4462
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Aoyama
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


This restaurant specializes in a style called kushi-yaki, which refers simply to a variety of ingredients -- meat, fish, vegetables -- cut into bits and grilled on bamboo skewers. There's nothing ceremonious or elegant about kushi-yaki; it resembles the more familiar yakitori, except that there is more variety to it. At Higo-no-ya you can feast on such dishes as shiitake mushrooms stuffed with minced chicken; scallops wrapped in bacon; and bonito, shrimp, and eggplant with ginger. The decor here is a postmodern-traditional cross, with wood beams painted black, paper lanterns, and sliding paper screens. There's tatami, table, and counter seating. Also, a helpful English menu is available. AE, V. No lunch. Subway: Ginza, Chiyoda, and Hanzo-mon lines, Omotesando Eki (Exit A4).


INAKAYA
Reine Bldg., 1st floor, 5-3-4 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3408-5040
¥2500 to ¥6000
Roppongi
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


The style here is robatayaki, the ambience pure theater. The centerpiece is a large U-shape counter. Inside, two cooks in traditional garb sit on cushions behind the grill, with a wonderful cornucopia of food spread out in front of them: fresh vegetables, seafood, skewers of beef and chicken. Point to what you want, or tell your waiter. The cook will bring it up out of the pit, prepare it, and hand it across on an 8-ft wooden paddle. Expect a half-hour wait any evening after 7. Inakaya is open from 5 PM to 5:30 AM. Reservations not accepted. AE, DC, MC, V. No lunch. Subway: Hibiya Line, Roppongi Eki (Exit 3).


KEAWJAI
Meguro Kowa Bldg. B1, 2-14-9 Kami 0saki, Meguro-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5420-7727
Under ¥2500 to ¥9000
Meguro
Thai
User Rating:
Rate It


Blink and you miss this little Thai restaurant, just a minute's walk or so from the east exit of Meguro Eki on Meguro-dori. (The sign is faded, and the steps leading downstairs are barely noticeable.) But Keawjai is worth looking for: it's one of the few places in Tokyo offering the subtle complexities of Royal Thai cuisines, and despite its size -- only eight tables and four banquettes -- the restaurant serves a remarkable range of dishes in different regional styles. The spicy beef salad is excellent (and really spicy), as are the baked rice with crabmeat served in a whole pineapple, and the red curry in coconut milk with chicken and cashews. The decor evokes Thailand with carved panels, paintings, and brass ornaments but manages to avoid clutter. The service is friendly and unhurried. MC, V. Closed 2nd and 3rd Mon. of month. Subway: JR and Namboku subway line, Meguro Eki (Higashi-guchi/East Exit).


KISOJI
3-10 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3588-0071
¥2500 to ¥9000
Akasaka
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


The specialty here is shabu-shabu (thin slices of beef cooked in boiling water at your table and dipped in sauce). Normally, this is an informal -- if pricey -- sort of meal; after all, you do get to play with your food a bit. Kisoji, however, adds a dimension of posh to the experience: private dining rooms with tatami seating, elegant little rock gardens, and alcoves with flower arrangements -- all the tasteful appointments of a traditional ryotei. AE, MC, V. Subway: Ginza and Marunouchi lines, Akasaka-mitsuke Eki (Belle Vie Akasaka Exit).


LA GRANATA
TBS Kaikan, basement, 5-3-3 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3582-5891
¥2500 to ¥9000
Akasaka
Italian
Be the First to Rate It


On the basement level of the Tokyo Broadcasting Systems building, La Granata and its companion restaurant, Granata Moderna, are both very popular, and deservedly. The chefs prepare some of the most accomplished, professional Italian food in town. La Granata is decked out trattoria style, with brickwork arches and red checkered tablecloths; Granata Moderna has the same menu but reaches for elegance with a polished rosewood bar, art-deco mirrors, and stained glass. Specialties worth trying include spaghetti with garlic and red pepper and the batter-fried zucchini flowers filled with mozzarella and asparagus. AE, MC, V. Subway: Chiyoda Line, Akasaka Eki (Exit 1A).


LE PAPILLON DE PARIS
Hanae Mori Bldg., 5th floor, 3-6-1 Kita-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3407-7461
¥6000 to Over ¥9000
Shibuya
French
Be the First to Rate It


This very fashion-minded restaurant is a joint venture of L'Orangerie in Paris and Madame Mori's formidable empire in couture. Muted elegance marks the decor, with cream walls, deep brown carpets, and a few good paintings. Mirrors add depth to a room that actually seats only 40. The menu, an ambitious one to begin with, changes every two weeks; the recurring salad of sautéed sweetbreads is excellent. The lunch and dinner menus are nouvelle and very pricey. This is a particularly good place to be on a late Sunday morning, for the buffet brunch (¥3,500), when you can graze through to what's arguably the best dessert tray in town. Le Papillon is on the fifth floor of the Hanae Mori Building, just a minute's walk from the Omotesando subway station on Aoyama-dori. Reservations essential. AE, DC, MC, V. No dinner Sun. Subway: Ginza and Hanzo-mon lines, Omotesando Eki (Exit A1).


MAISEN
4-8-5 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3470-0071
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Harajuku
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


You're likely to spend some time soaking in a Japanese bathhouse; eating in one is a different story. Maisen was converted from a former sento (public bathhouse) in 1983, and you'll find the old high ceiling, characteristic of bathing rooms built during the first quarter of the 20th century, as well as the original signs instructing bathers where to change. Large bouquets of seasonal flowers help transform the large, airy space into a pleasant dining room. Tonkatsu (deep-fried pork cutlets) is Maisen's chef d'oeuvre. Though it's more expensive than the regular tonkatsu roast, consider trying kuroi buta no hire (fillet of Chinese black pork), which is very juicy and tender. There are no-smoking rooms upstairs. No credit cards. Subway: Ginza, Chiyoda, and Hanzo-mon lines, Omotesando Eki (Exit A2).


MONSOON CAFE
15-4 Hachiyama-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5489-3789
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Shibuya
Pan-Asian
Be the First to Rate It


Thanks to places like this, the demand for "ethnic" food continues apace in Tokyo. The Monsoon Cafe complements its eclectic menu with an aggressively "ethnic" decor: rattan furniture, brass tableware from Thailand, colorful papier-mâché parrots on gilded stands, Balinese carvings, and ceiling fans. The best seats in the house are on the balcony that runs around the four sides of a huge atrium-style central floor space. Try the Vietnamese steamed spring rolls, the Indonesian grilled chicken with peanut sauce, or the Chinese-style beef with oyster sauce. The place stays open until 5 AM daily. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Tokyu Toyoko private rail line, Daikanyama Eki (Kita-guchi/North Exit).


MOTI
Kimpa Bldg., 3rd floor, 2-14-31 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3584-6640
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Akasaka
Indian
User Rating:
Rate It


Vegetarian dishes at Moti, especially the lentils and eggplant, are very good; so is the chicken masala, cooked in butter and spices. Moti has the inevitable Indian friezes, copper bowls, and white elephants, but the owners have not gone overboard on decor. The appeal here is food, as it should be. Cooks are recruited from India by a family member who runs a restaurant in Delhi. There are other branches of Moti in Tokyo, but the Akasaka branch, right by the Chiyoda Line subway station, is the easiest to get into and the most comfortable. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Chiyoda Line, Akasaka stop (Exit 2).


NINNIKUYA
1-26-12 Ebisu, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3446-5887
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Shibuya
Eclectic
User Rating:
Rate It


In Japanese, ninniku means "garlic," an ingredient conspicuously absent from the traditional local cuisine. Owner-chef Eiyuki Endo discovered his own passion for the savory bulb in Italy in 1976. Since then he has traveled the world for interesting garlic dishes. There is no decor to speak of, and you may well have to share a table, but it's all good fun. Try the littleneck clams Italian style with garlic rice, or the Peruvian garlic chicken. Ninnikuya is a little hard to find, but anybody you ask in the neighborhood can point the way. Reservations not accepted. No credit cards. Closed Mon. No lunch. Subway: JR and Hibiya Line, Ebisu Eki (Higashi-guchi/East Exit).


NISHIKI
3-11-10 Tsukishima, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3534-8697
Under ¥2500
Toyosu
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


This is one of the dozens of monjya-yaki restaurants that line the streets of Tsukishima, a five-minute subway ride from Yuraku-cho. A close relative of the western Japanese meal-in-a-pancake innovation okonomi-yaki, monjya-yaki is a cuisine that's genuinely Shitamachi -- old Tokyo downtown. Unlike okonomi-yaki, however, monjya-yaki uses no eggs and less flour. The menu lists more than 20 eclectic combinations, of which the most popular are sliced potatoes and mayonnaise, tara-ko (cod roe), and mochi (rice cakes), as well as the standard mix of beef, pork, shrimp, and squid seasoned in soy sauce. No credit cards. Closed Tues. No lunch weekdays. Subway: Yuraku-cho and Oedo lines, Tsukishima Eki (Exit 7).


OSHIMA
Ginza Core Bldg. 9F, 5-8-20 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3574-8080
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Ginza
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


Oshima is devoted to the cooking of Kanazawa, the city on the Sea of Japan that during the Edo period earned the nickname "Little Kyoto" for the richness of its craft traditions. Kanazawa cuisine is noted for its seafood; the grilled fresh yellowtail at Oshima is a delight. But the specialty of the house is a stew of duck and potatoes called jibuni. The exquisite table settings make use of Kutani porcelain and Wajima lacquer bowls. AE, MC, V. Subway: Ginza, Hibiya, and Marunouchi lines, Ginza Eki (Exit A5).


RANGETSU
3-5-8 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3567-1021
¥6000 to Over ¥9000
Ginza
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


The increase in Japan's consumption of beef over the past century has much to do with the popular appeal of shabu-shabu and sukiyaki, the house specialties here. Inside, tables for four or more people in semiprivate rooms are equipped with a tabletop stove. Only one dish can be cooked at your table, but this shouldn't stop you from trying both shabu-shabu and sukiyaki. Rangetsu is one block from the Ginza 4-chome crossing, on the side closest to the Wako clock. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Marunouchi and Ginza lines, Ginza Eki (Exit A9 or A10).


RESTORANTE CARMINE
1-19 Saiku-machi, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3260-5066
¥2500 to ¥6000
Shinjuku
Italian
User Rating:
Rate It


For a real Italian five-course dinner, this could be the best deal in town. Specialties of the house include pasta twists with tomato and caper sauce, and veal scallopini à la marsala. The tiramisu is a serious dessert. Carmine's is not easy to find, but it's worth the effort. When you exit the station, ask for help finding the street Ushigome-chuo-dori. Follow the street uphill for about 10 minutes; the sign for the restaurant will be on the left. No credit cards. Subway: Namboku and Yuraku-cho lines, Ichigaya Eki (Exit 5).


ROBATA
1-3-8 Yuraku-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3591-1905
¥2500 to ¥9000
Ginza
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


You might find this place a little daunting at first: it's old and funky, cramped, and always packed. But chef-owner Takao Inoue holds forth here with an inspired version of Japanese home cooking. There's no menu; the best thing you can do is tell Inoue-san (who speaks some English) how hungry you are and how much you want to spend, and leave the rest to him. A meal at Robata is simple to the eye but subtle and satisfying. Typical dishes include steamed fish with vegetables, stews of beef or pork, and seafood salad. No credit cards. Closed 3rd Mon. of month. No lunch. Subway: Hibiya, Chiyoda, and Toei Mita lines, Hibiya Eki (Exit A4).


ROTI

Piramide Bldg. 1F, 6-6-9 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5785-3671
Under ¥2500 to ¥6000
Roppongi
Contemporary
Be the First to Rate It


Billing itself as a "modern Brasserie," Roti is basically inspired by the culinary aesthetic that emerged in the late 1960s in the United States: a creative use of simple, fresh ingredients that still lets the food speak for itself, and a fusing of Eastern and Western elements. Appetizers at Roti are more interesting than main dishes. Try the Vietnamese sea-bass carpaccio with crisp noodles and roasted garlic. Roti stocks a fine cellar of Californian wines and has microbrewed ales from the famed Rogue brewery in Oregon. The best seats in the house are outside, at one of the dozen tables around the big glass pyramid on the terrace. AE, MC, V. Subway: Hibiya Line, Roppongi Eki (Exit 1).


SABADO SABADETE
Genteel Shirokanedai Bldg., 2nd floor, 5-3-2 Shirokanedai, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3445-9353
¥2500 to ¥6000
Meguro
Spanish
Be the First to Rate It


Catalonia-born jewelry designer Mañuel Benito loves to cook. For a while he indulged this passion by renting out a bar in Aoyama on Saturday nights and making an enormous paella for his friends. Word got around. Inspired by this success, Benito found a trendy location and opened his Sabado Sabadete full-time in 1991. The highlight of every evening is still the moment when the chef, in his bright red Catalan cap, shouts out "Gohan desu yo!" -- the Japanese equivalent of "Soup's on!" and dishes out his bubbling-hot paella. Don't miss the empanadas or the escalivada (a Spanish ratatouille with red peppers, onions, and eggplant). No credit cards. Closed Sun. Subway: Toei Mita and Namboku lines, Shirokanedai Eki (Exit 1).


SANKO-EN
1-8-7 Azabu-juban, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3585-6306
¥2500 to ¥6000
Roppongi
Korean
Be the First to Rate It


Sanko-en is in a neighborhood thick with barbecue joints; from the outside, not much seems to distinguish one from another. From the beginning, however, Sanko-en drew customers in droves, not just from the neighborhood but from trendy nearby Roppongi as well. It opened one branch, then another, and moved the main operation to new quarters. Korean barbecue is a smoky affair; you cook your own dinner -- thin slices of beef and brisket and vegetables -- on a gas grill at your table. Reservations not accepted. AE, V. Closed Wed. Subway: Namboku and Toei Oedo Lines, Azabu-juban Eki (Exit 7).


SASA-NO-YUKI
2-15-10 Negishi, Taito-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3873-1145
¥2500 to ¥6000
Ueno
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


Sasa-no-yuki has been serving homemade tofu in an array of styles for the past 300 years. The seating is on tatami, the garden has a waterfall, and the presentation of the food is truly artistic. In addition to a few nontofu à la carte items, there are three all-tofu sets, the most basic of which is a three-course meal including ankake tofu (bean curd in a sweet soy sauce), kake shoyu tofu (simmered with chicken and shiitake mushrooms), and unsui (a creamy tofu crepe filled with tiny morsels of sea scallops, shrimp, and minced red pepper). For the best sampling, choose the eight-course banquet, which includes yuba-koya tofu, a delicious crepe soaked in soy milk. AE, DC, MC, V. OPEN: Tues.-Sun. 11-9. Closed Mon. Subway: JR Uguisudani Eki (Kita-guchi/North Exit).


SASASHIN
2-20-3 Nihombashi- Ningyocho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3668-2456
Under ¥2500
Nihombashi
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


No culinary tour of Japan would be complete without a visit to an izakaya, where the food is hearty, close to home cooking, and is meant mainly as ballast for the earnest consumption of beer and sake. Sasashin spurns the notion of decor: there is a counter laden with platters of the evening's fare, a clutter of rough wooden tables, and not much else. It's noisy, smoky, crowded, and absolutely authentic. Try the sashimi, the grilled fish, or the fried tofu; you really can't go wrong by just pointing your finger to anything on the counter that takes your fancy. Reservations not accepted. No credit cards. Closed Sun. and 3rd Sat. of month. No lunch. Subway: Hanzo-mon Line, Suitengu-mae Eki (Exit 7); Hibiya and Toei Asakusa lines, Ningyocho Eki (Exits A1, A3).


SASASHU
2-2-6 Ikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3971-6796
¥2500 to ¥6000
Ikebukuro
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


This traditional-style pub is noteworthy for stocking only the finest and rarest, the Latours and Mouton-Rothschilds, of sake: these are wines that take gold medals in the annual sake competition year after year. It also serves some of the best izakaya food in town -- and the Japanese wouldn't dream of drinking well without eating well. Sasashu is a rambling two-story building in traditional style, with thick beams and step-up tatami floors. The specialty of the house is salmon steak, brushed with sake and soy sauce and broiled over a charcoal hibachi. AE, DC, MC, V. Closed Sun. No lunch. Subway: JR Yamanote Line; Yuraku-cho, Marunouchi and Oedo subway lines: Ikebukuro Eki (Exit 19).


SAWANOI
Shimno Bldg., 1st floor, 3-7-13 Akasaka, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3582-2080
Under ¥2500
Akasaka
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


The homemade udon noodles served at Sawanoi make for a perfect light meal or a midnight snack. The menu, available in English, lists a range of noodle dishes, hot and cold, served in combination with seafood, vegetables, or meat. Try the inaka (country-style) udon, which has bonito, seaweed flakes, radish shavings, and a raw egg dropped in to cook in the hot broth. For a heartier meal, chose the tenkama set, which consists of hot udon and tempura that you dip in a delicate soy-based sauce. No credit cards. Closed Sun. Subway: Ginza and Marunouchi lines, Akasaka-mitsuke Eki (Belle Vie Akasaka Exit).


SPAGO
5-7-8 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3423-4025
¥2500 to ¥9000
Roppongi
American
User Rating:
Rate It


This was the first venture overseas by trendsetting Spago of Los Angeles, and owner-chef-celebrity Wolfgang Puck still comes periodically to Tokyo to oversee the authenticity of his California cuisine. Will duck sausage pizza with Boursin cheese and pearl onions ever be as American as apple pie? Maybe. Meanwhile, Spago is a clean, well-lighted place, painted pink and white and adorned with potted palms. Service is smooth, and tables on the glassed-in veranda attract a fair sample of Tokyo's gilded youth. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Hibiya Line, Roppongi Eki (Exit 3).


SUSHI TOSHI

5-8-3 Nakano Bldg., 1st floor, Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3423-0333
¥6000 to Over ¥9000
Roppongi
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


This contemporary sushi shop in Roppongi caters to an eclectic clientele, all of whom can easily be seen thanks to the restaurant's U-shape counter. As in most sushi bars, a single order consists of two pieces. In addition to maguro and chutoro (both tuna, the latter coming from the middle section of the fish), the scallops still smack of sea salt. Or if you don't see anything appealing in the glass case in front of you, ask one of the chefs to pull something from the tank. The usual pink pickled ginger, as well as kamaboko (white fish cakes) served on a haran (lily-flower) leaf, clears the palate between each "course." AE, DC, MC, V. Closed Sun. No lunch. Subway: Hibiya Line, Roppongi Eki (Exit 3).


TABLEAUX
Sunroser Daikanyama Bldg., basement, 11-6 Sarugaku-cho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5489-2201
¥2500 to ¥9000
Shibuya
Contemporary
User Rating:
Rate It


The mural in the bar depicts the fall of Pompeii, the banquettes in the restaurant are upholstered in red leather, and the walls are papered in antique gold. Tableaux may lay on more glitz than it really needs, but the service is cordial and professional, and the food is superb. Try bruschetta (toasted bread with tomato, basil, and olive oil), fettuccine with smoked salmon and sun-dried tomatoes, or grilled pork chop stuffed with chutney, onion, and garlic. Tableaux's bar is open until 1:30 AM. AE, DC, MC, V. No lunch. Subway: Tokyu Toyoko private rail line, Daikanyama Eki (Kita-guchi/North Exit).


TAKENO
6-21-2 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3541-8697
¥2500 to ¥6000
Tsukiji
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


Just a stone's throw from the Tokyo central fish market, Takeno is a rough-cut neighborhood restaurant that tends to fill up at noon with the market's wholesalers and auctioneers and office personnel from the nearby Dentsu ad agency and Asahi Shimbun (newspaper) company. There's nothing here but the freshest and the best at reasonable prices. Sushi, sashimi, and tempura are the staple fare; prices are not posted because they vary with the costs that morning in the market. Reservations not accepted. No credit cards. Closed Sun. Subway: Hibiya Line, Tsukiji Eki (Exit 1); Toei Oedo Line, Tsukiji-shijo Eki (Exit A1).


TATSUMIYA
1-33-5 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3842-7373
¥2500 to ¥6000
Asakusa
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


This ryotei is neither inaccessible nor outrageously expensive. Most ryotei tend to oppress the first-time visitor a little with the weight of their antiquity and the ceremonious formality of their service. Tatsumiya, which opened in 1980, takes a different attitude to the past: the rooms are almost cluttered with antique chests, braziers, clocks, lanterns, bowls, utensils, and craft work. The cuisine itself follows the kaiseki repertoire, derived from the tradition of the tea-ceremony meal. Seven courses are offered, including something raw, something boiled, something vinegared, something grilled. You must arrive before 8:30 for dinner. Jacket and tie. No credit cards. Closed Mon. and 3rd Sun. of month. No lunch. Subway: Ginza and Toei Asakusa lines, Asakusa Eki (Exit 1 or 3).


TENMATSU
1-6-1 Dogen-zaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3462-2815
¥2500 to Over ¥9000
Shibuya
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


The best seats in the house at Tenmatsu, as in any tempura-ya, are at the immaculate wooden counter, where your tidbits of choice are taken straight from the oil and served up immediately. You also get to watch the chef in action. Tenmatsu's brand of good-natured professional hospitality adds to the enjoyment of the meal. Here you can rely on a set menu or order à la carte delicacies like lotus root, shrimp, unagi (eel), and kisu (a small white freshwater fish). Call ahead to reserve a seat at the counter. DC, MC, V. Subway: Shibuya Eki (Minami-guchi/South Exit for JR lines, Exit 3A for Ginza and Hanzo-mon subway lines).


TOH-KA-LIN
Hotel Okura, 2-10-4 Tora-no-mon, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3505-6068
¥6000 to Over ¥9000
Shimbashi
Chinese
User Rating:
Rate It


Year after year the Hotel Okura is rated by business travelers as one of the three best hotels in the world. It has to do instead with its polish, its impeccable standards of service -- and, to judge by Toh-Ka-Lin, the quality of its restaurants. The style of the cuisine here is eclectic; two stellar examples are the Peking duck and the sautéed quail wrapped in lettuce leaf. The restaurant also has a not-too-expensive midafternoon meal of assorted dim sum and other delicacies. The wine list is extensive. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Hibiya Line, Kamiya-cho Eki (Exit 4B); Ginza Line, Tora-no-mon Eki (Exit 3).


TOKYO JOE'S
Akasaka Eight-One Bldg. B1, 2-13-5 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3508-0325
¥6000 to ¥9000
Akasaka
American
Be the First to Rate It


The first foreign branch of famed Miami Joe's opened in Osaka, a city where volume-for-value really counts in the reputation of a restaurant. The Tokyo branch serves enormous quantities of stone crab, with melted butter and mustard-mayonnaise. The turnover here is fierce; waiters in long red aprons scurry to keep up with it, but service is remarkably smooth. The crabs are flown in fresh from the Florida Keys, their one and only habitat. There are other choices on the menu, but it's madness to order anything else. Top it all off -- if you have room -- with key lime pie. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: Ginza and Marunouchi lines, Akasaka-mitsuke Eki (Belle Vie Akasaka Exit).


TONKI
1-1-2 Shimo-Meguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/3491-9928
Under ¥2500
Meguro
Japanese
User Rating:
Rate It


Meguro, a neighborhood distinguished for almost nothing else culinary, has the ichiban-no (number one) tonkatsu ryori (deep-fried pork cutlet cookery) in Tokyo. It's a family joint, with Formica-top tables and a fellow who comes around to take your order while you're waiting the requisite 10 minutes in line. And people do wait in line, every night until the place closes at 10:30. Tonki is one of those successful places that never went conglomerate; it kept getting more popular and never got around to putting frills on what it does best: pork cutlets, soup, raw cabbage salad, rice, pickles, and tea. That's the standard course, and almost everybody orders it, with good reason. DC, V. Closed Tues. and 3rd Mon. of month. Subway: JR Yamanote Line, Meguro Eki (Nishi-guchi/West Exit).


YAOZEN
Takashimaya Times Square, 5-24-2 Sendagaya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Phone: 03/5361-1872
¥6000 to Over ¥9000
Shinjuku
Japanese
Be the First to Rate It


On the 14th floor of Takashimaya Times Square, Yaozen has a magnificent view of the city and serves elegant kaiseki banquets for parties of three or more between the normal lunch and dinner hours (reserve in advance). Standard fare, served by kimono-clad waitresses, is a prix-fixe meal in a bento lunch box or on elegantly lacquered trays: try the two-tiered okusama-gozen bento, which includes sashimi, simmered vegetables, and grilled fish. AE, DC, MC, V. Subway: JR/Shinjuku Eki (Minami-guchi/South Exit for JR, Exit 2 for Toei Shinjuku Line).

Check out some of these Interesting Destinations:
Hawaii - Amsterdam - Berlin - Miami - Cancún - Las Vegas - London - Copenhagen - San Francisco - Sydney - Venecia
Brussels - Barcelona - Niagara Falls - Paris - Athens - Oslo - Tokyo - Dublin - Vancouver - Orlando - Prague

Travel to anywhere in the world and check out all the information you need regarding your destination here in Best Cities Travel.
BestCitiesTravel.com - Main

travel city cities guide destinations itineraries map nightlife