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Mar 14, 2012 01:23 AM

3 days in Tokyo - where to eat?

Hi - i will be visiting Tokyo for 3 days next month. It will be my first time to Japan. There seems to be so many places one could eat and I am lost with trying to figure it all out. Where would you suggest are the must eat places and things to try? Completely open to all foods, types of restaurants etc.
We are staying at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo - is there anything decent in the hotel to eat as well?
Thank you for your help!

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  1. Do some initial research on the board and then post your results and we can go from there. We don't have the resources on this board to start from ground zero on every request like this.

    1. Decent food in a five star Hyatt hotel? In Tokyo? This will be quite a challenge.

      Seriously, they have an excellent teppan restaurant there. Haven't tried the others but I believe they're all excellent. The hotel is in the Roppongi Hills complex, so you also have 2+ floors of restaurant options, including L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon. It's also a few meters away from Sukiyabashi Jiro (the Roppongi branch, not the honten).

      1. You dont really need to worry about what to eat if you are visiting Tokyo. You will be amazed by the varieties. One important thing is most basic restaurants in Tokyo are 24 hrs open. So dont worry about it.

        16 Replies
        1. re: chefkaori

          Lucky you, you have the tonkatsu Butagumi that is close to Roppongi - and reviewed many times in the chowhound :

          Another choice, Toraya Cafe in Roppongi Hills, on the other, has a plate of assortiment of Japanese desserts with little cakes and matcha sauce, azuki beans paste..

          1. re: chefkaori

            Any place that is open 24 hours in Tokyo has a specific purpose, and "destination dining" isn't it.

            1. re: chefkaori

              "One important thing is most basic restaurants in Tokyo are 24 hrs open. "

              What a weird bit of advice. Places like Denny's and McDonald's are open 24 hours, not "most basic restaurants.| Is that the kind of restaurant recommendation you'd make for a a visitor to Tokyo?

              1. re: Robb S

                I might send a visitor to Tokyo to McD's for a fried apple pie. They're perfect. Just like I remember from my childhood, before the stupid health police came out and brought the baked apple pies.


                1. re: prasantrin

                  Ok, that's it! I've seen you mention these a few times now and finally I've been convinced - I'm going to check these out soon.

                  Think I can bring my own ice cream in to top it?

                  1. re: lost squirrel

                    Just sneak it in your man-bag. Now I wish I had done that. I'll just have to go back to try it. :

                    It's just a fried apple pie, but if you've ever tried the baked ones they have now, you'll understand my longing for them.

                    1. re: prasantrin

                      Squirrel doesn't have a man-bag. He carries a fine murse, where he sticks his pulled pork and rubbed ribs for the Weber.

                2. re: Robb S

                  If you have been to Tokyo then, I will start arguing this with you. I have been here and seen it all. Robb S, I can show good sushi, ramen and any kind of restaurants that work 24hrs, if you want. ok

                  1. re: chefkaori

                    I am curious about our claim. I cannot imagine a 24-hour place serving good sushi or good ramen.

                    1. re: Tripeler

                      I guess the 24-hour Zanmai sushi chain does okay....

                      1. re: Robb S

                        Darn right! There isn't a better value for money in sushi, for my money.
                        But most of them aren't open 24 hours. There were 5 or 6 around my neighborhood and I think they closed at 3 or 4.

                        1. re: jem589

                          You're right of course, but they've been opening a lot of new branches lately, and most of the new ones are open 24 hours. According to their website they have 22 branches that are open 24 hours a day.

                    2. re: chefkaori

                      Well you said: "most basic restaurants in Tokyo are 24 hrs open" which simply doesn't make sense.

                      If you meant that you can find most basic Japanese cuisines at some Tokyo restaurant that's open 24 hours, I would still doubt that. Please show me good kaiseki at 5am, or good teppanyaki or tempura in a 24-hour restaurant. I would be delighted to find such a thing.

                      Or anything really - perhaps you could share with us some of your favorite 24-hour restaurants in Tokyo? (I even started a new thread for it.)

                      1. re: Robb S

                        If you live in Tokyo, then I would be surprised to hear you say this. But if you dont live in Tokyo, I dont see any reason why We should start the argument. This is what I do, When most restaurants, izakayas in central shinjuku tokyo open till 5am. I dont know how much you have stayed in Japan.

                        1. re: chefkaori

                          Robb S. and I have both lived in Tokyo for over 25 years. He knows an immense amount of information and details on the Tokyo food scene. Kaori, it surprises me for you to make your assertions.

                        2. re: Robb S

                          Ya Robb, we all know you don't really live in Japan and are just talking out your a**! :-D

                          Seriously, I kid! Not that Robb S needs to be defended, but. . .

                          chefkaori (are you really a chef or are you just co-opting the word "chef"), check out That's how much Robb knows about food in Japan (it's his website), and he has also written books about eating in Japan. He may be a furrener, but he has lived in Japan for a long time (if I remember correctly) and there's a good chance he knows much more about Tokyo than you do.

                          So now I ask, please list NAMES of GOOD restaurants that are open 24 hours that specialize in ramen, tempura, tofu, sushi, etc.

                          I don't want to know the names of just any restaurants, I want to know GOOD ones. Yoshinoya need not apply.

                          (24-hours, in real English, means open a full 24 hours. It doesn't mean open until midnight, contrary to what Konami Sports thinks)

                  2. If you don't want to leave the hotel then the teppanyaki (Keyakizaka) is the only decent restaurant there. Expensive but very good. I think it has a Michelin star. The other venues are over-priced. Across the road from the front of the hotel is a small lane which conceals an excellent French restaurant called Cogito where chef Yamada frequently hangs out. Highly recommended and again with a Michelin to his credit. For Italian, head to the opposite side of the Roppongi Hills complex and walk 2 minutes down the small road next to Hollywood Plaza. On 3/F of Piramide Building is a truly great restaurant called L'Osteria. For sushi it's hard to beat Zanmai which is just south of the main Roppongi Crossing; great value and excellent fish. If you want to spend more, from the hotel come out of the main entrance, turn right until you reach the big road (Roppongi-dori) and turn left. Walk down for three or four minutes until you come to a pedestrian crossing with traffic lights. There is a large building on the other side called aLife and to your left is a small lane. Head up the lane about 50 metres and on your left, down some stairs, is Sushi Tsu. There you can have sashimi, sushi, grilled fish or boiled fish. Usually a set. The dining experience is off the scale. If budget is an issue go there for lunch not dinner. Still excellent. Good luck and enjoy!

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: tokyobookman

                      Sushi tsu! I post here frequently and tend to be pretty descriptive about what I like what I think is good. There are also a number of places I keept to myself. So thanks for outing one of my hidden gems!

                      1. re: Uncle Yabai

                        Sorry Uncle Yabai. I didn't mean to upset you with the post! It really is good isn't it? And the non-electric refrigerated cabinet. What a work of art. As I am sure you know, the four lunch sets there every day are among the best price/performance meals that Tokyo has to offer.

                        Re-reading my intial post of ideas for fifi I can't believe I left off L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon which is also in the Hills. This is an all-time favourite of mine and my wife and I had our wedding lunch there after we were done at the ward office. We'll be heading back in there again next week to celebrate our 6th anniversary. The lunch menu of course.

                        1. re: tokyobookman

                          Indeed, it is quite fine. I've only gone for dinner, where it is very much of an insider's place, with Taku and his team running the show in a combination of monastic and rakugo attitudes. Great atmosphere.

                          1. re: Uncle Yabai

                            thanks for all the suggestions!! so helpful and much appreciated :)

                            1. re: fifi

                              Let us know how you get on and where you decided to spend your time. Happy dining and all the best!

                        2. re: Uncle Yabai

                          hey how does it compare to the likes of sawada / yoshitake / saito? i have booked sawada and yoshitake for my trip in jan and still have one opening.. am considering sushi sho / sushiso masa (the chef at masa worked under keiji san at sushi sho).. but my japanese friend recommend sushi tsu and sushi nakamura, so i am just wondering if u could kindly provide more information re sushi tsu? thanks so much!!

                          1. re: Uncle Yabai

                            hey can u pls let me know how sushi tsu is? seems like its very hard to find information about it online.. how does it compare to the likes of yoshitake / saito / sawada etc?

                            1. re: jmui852

                              Sushi Tsu, I have had only lunch there, their 3375 yens lunch set. But I preferred the lunch at sushi Kurusu, also in Roppongi, so i won't try the diner.