Screwed in Tokyo...Only can eat at Airport (or maybe around there)
I am flying from Shanghai to LA with a brief stopover in Tokyo. It is about three hours. Does anyone know the Tokyo airport and it's eating options? IS there a good place to eat? Also if anbody knows of a place close to the airport, let me know. I could try to push it and eat outside the airport. I wish I could spend more time in Tokyo..I (and my stomach) haven't been in 5 years......hopefully sooner than later.
While hardly gourmet heaven, the sushi places in the terminal aren't bad and the Wako tonkatsu shop in the north wing is decent.
Airport food seems to be the same all over the world - they are pricy and not as good as the one you can eat outside the airport. That said, there are quite bit of options at the departure terminal floor. I would avoid cafeteria type of restaurants where they carry all sorts of food. As most of Japanese restaurants carry specialized food only, it is better to stick with the best they can make. Sushi, Tonkatsu, ramen noodles (catagolized as Chinese, but they are actually Japanese version of Chinese) are OK. Cafe la Mille is long-time popular cafe in Tokyo. Hope this helps.
The airport is at the country side. I wouldn't recommend going outside.
Go into the city of Narita, which is only two train stops from Narita Airport (on either the JR or Keisei lines). JR and Keisei have different Narita stations, but they're almost right next to each other. Head towards Narita Temple and you'll find several good eating options along the way. There's an excellent and inexpensive sushi restaurant called Edo Sushi about five minutes from the stations. The tempura restaurant on your right as you start down the road to the temple isn't bad either. With your limited time, you probably can't make it all the way to the temple (it's not close to the stations), but if somehow you do, there are some great eel restaurants just before the temple entrance.
Here's another vote for staying in the airport. I don't think the restaurants of Narita City are so phenomenally much better that they're worth the hassle of worrying about train schedules and the danger of missing a flight. They may be a little cheaper, but that's offset by the train fare to get to them.
re: Robb S
No, don't leave the airport. If you are in Terminal 1, go upstairs to the restaurant area, which runs between the north and south terminals. The sushi places all are fine, there is a Thai restaurant, a Chinese place, and a restaurant that calls itself family cuisine that had some nice looking ice cream desserts. I also spied the flight crews eating there, and they generally know the places to go. Most of the places have plastic food in glass cases, so you can pick out what you want in case you're confused by the menu.