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Tokyo Birthday Recommendation

Calliope1 Aug 28, 2007 07:21 PM

I am moving to Tokyo next week. I am a student and don't have a lot of money, but my birthday is two days after I arrive and so I am planning to take myself somewhere a bit nice and exciting. I won't know anyone, so if you can recommend somewhere where I won't feel really weird being alone, that would be great too.

Thank you.

  1. l
    lost squirrel Aug 30, 2007 06:59 PM

    Tokyo is pretty big overall, do you know exactly where you'll be staying?
    That might help us give you some advice.

    Especially if your only 2 days new to Japan.

    3 Replies
    1. re: lost squirrel
      Calliope1 Aug 30, 2007 09:43 PM

      I will be staying in the Roppongi area for a few days, and the moving to an apartment near Shibuya. But I am fine going anyway--I am from New York, so the subway is something I am fine navigating.

      1. re: Calliope1
        lost squirrel Sep 12, 2007 08:40 PM

        If you'll be in Roppongi for your birthday you could always try Chinese Cafe Eight.

        Everytime I go, I end up making friends with other people around the table. It's pretty conducive to talking, especially with the giant genitalia hanging on the ceiling.

        1. re: Calliope1
          lost squirrel Sep 12, 2007 08:59 PM

          I just realized I'm too late aren't I? So, did you move here yet? Where did you go?

      2. Robb S Aug 30, 2007 07:41 AM

        Rather than going to a noisy pickup bar like Heartland (next to the Grand Hyatt), you might want to try someplace with good food and a counter where you can sit comfortably by yourself and enjoy the atmosphere.

        Gompachi (http://www.bento.com/rev/1735.html) has a pretty lively atmosphere and lots of counter space. I haven't been since they've remodeled, but if you can get a seat at the bar, Cardenas Charcoal Grill might be another good choice (http://www.bento.com/rev/1521.html).

        Or, if you can still get a reservation and don't mind spending Y15,000 or so, Tapas Molecular Bar (http://www.bento.com/rev/2528.html) is definitely a special-occasion food-focused spot, and the staff are very interactive (since there are only seven seats, and new courses arrive every five minutes or so).

        2 Replies
        1. re: Robb S
          Silverjay Aug 30, 2007 08:41 AM

          I totally echo Robb's sentiment on Heartland. I was actually going to suggest Gompachi as well. Another place you might like is Jackpot in Ebisu (http://www.bento.com/rev/0401.html), which has counter seating in front of an open kitchen, an eclectic menu, and a good atmosphere. It's in a good neighborhood as well, with lots of cozy bars for after your meal. They've got an English menu and reasonable prices... As a student, you might enjoy going to Shimo-Kitazawa, which is a buzzing student neighborhood not far from Shinjuku and Shibuya. There's a fun, lively seafood restaurant there called "Uoshin" (http://www.uoshins.com/shimokitazawa_top.htm) . The last time I was in the neighborhood, friends took me to a good, fairly large izakaya called "Shirube". (http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a056509/). The kitchen is a large sunken island, with a counter almost all the way around it. They staff was college-aged and really nice....In Shibuya, "Kaikaya" gets a lot of mentions on CH as a good place...None of these places are particularly upscale, but they might be fun and not too costly for a solo diner...If you're interested in something more mature and refined, you might be interested in a place like "Ogawa"- (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/351531 ).

          1. re: Silverjay
            I make my own pickles Aug 31, 2007 01:02 AM

            Jackpot is insanely crowded and they always have some very noisy parties going on. The foreigners there are usually with their g/f so no one will be that friendly. Its really hard to pick a place to eat alone and you won't be able to read the menu (??) of many of the good places. So I suggest talking to your orientation people etc and mentioning that its your birthday to see if anyone would want to get together with you.

        2. h
          Hot Chocolate Aug 29, 2007 06:38 PM

          There's a bar next to the Grand Hyatt. It's expat central i believe. Some kind of brewery. Just try surfing around and you'll find it. Expats in asia are all extremely friendly. Judging by your name Calliope1, you appear to be female. I would just go to that bar and just start talking to a few expats and tell them it's your birthday. From my experience expats are extremely welcoming as we all know what it's like to move to a foreign country and not know anyone. When i went to Osaka, i went to the local expat bar and a couple really nice english teachers showed me around the clubs...I of course paid for their drinks in return..but had a memorable experience and an experience I would not have had otherwise.

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