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Dec 10, 2009 11:59 PM

Everything Donburi--help me find excellent donburi

Since I'll be leaving Japan in a few months, I've decided to try to get my fill of foods I love but don't eat very often. One such food is donburi. With its many varieties, standard and modern, can one ever have too much donburi?

I'm looking in particular for the following:



any donburi with onsen tamago

But of course, any other kind of donburi recommendation (katsudon, unaju, tekkadon, etc.) will be happily received. High-end, cheap eats, anything is OK as long as it's an excellent example of its kind. I've read Tsukiji has some good donburi places--mostly seafood?

I'm looking mostly for Osaka, Kobe, Kyoto, and Tokyo recs. I don't have any plans to travel around Japan prior to leaving except for Takayama and Shirakawago (so if you have recs for those two cities, that would be great, too).

The only other qualification is that the restaurant must be easily accessed by public transportation, and it shouldn't be somewhere out of the way. For part of my quest, I'll be with my mother who has some mobility issues, plus she hates it when I drag her all the way to the middle of nowhere (she still complains about our trip to Ek Chuah in Osaka several years ago).

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  1. If donburi are what you seek, this site is your friend (the place in the specific link below is in Musashi Koyama IIRC, I've been there, had 1.5 bai size, pretty good but didn't eat meat for a month afterwards):

    4 Replies
    1. re: kamiosaki

      That is a great site! Here is the top Tokyo picks page- .

      A great oyako-don spot not on that list is Toritsune--> .

      In Tsukiji, there is a shop that does tuna cheek (maguro hoho niku) don. I can't remember the name though, but it's on tv from time to time.

      1. re: Silverjay

        Konoha donburi is my comfort food and while no one makes it as well as my grandmother did, HIsago has it on its menu and it's not bad. They became famous for their oyako don so do expect to line up for about 30 minutes.

        1. re: kikisakura

          The one, I will again for will be « unaju », even you can buy it as a lunch box, it is really not the same than the unagi just roasted on the grill. Recommended for your mother is coming to Japan after April. The best season is I think in September ?
          The other ones are just for one curiosity :
          The “sari don” (clam) : more famous for the soba, the dashi is not particular in my opinion.

          The “steak don” (lunch base price reasonable) : perhaps your mother can enjoy this one.

          The “tuna steak don” (standing bar outside Tsukiji) : there is not quite other place for the “maguro hoho steak don”. The tip is that’s an informal dirty counter, jeans is recommended, the other donburi are mediocre and the price is still 1000yens !

          1. re: kikisakura

            If you want to try a third oyako-don, Torichaya in Kagurazaka is good too.


      2. A great donburi in Tsukiji is at Kitsuneya. You might have to eat standing up, but the beef bowl and guts bowl are both absolutely to die for... It's not fish, but it is only available at Tsukiji...

        3 Replies
        1. re: tokyokev

          What's the guts bowl? Is that like horumon-donburi?

          1. re: prasantrin

            Yes :-) Horumon-don. Various types of offal stewed for hours and served over rice.

            1. re: tokyokev

              Sounds like something my usual dining partner would love! Next time we're in Japan. . .