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Your Favorite Yakiniku in Tokyo for Wagyu, Kobe, Matsusaka, Horumon, etc?

We really want to try some of the prized japanese meat (and organs), and we love yakiniku style because we get to cook it ourselves to our liking. we prefer more "japanese" yakiniku versus korean style. please let us know your favorites places with great meat selection to try a little of everything and also a nice but fun lively atmosphere for my wife and me! thank you!!!

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  1. Don't think you will get Kobe or Matsusaka on yakiniku, at least not in my experience. Kobe tend to be served more in Shabu Shabu setting rather than yakiniku.
    My usual place for high end yakiniku is Ayanokouji near Midtown. http://www.ayanokouji.jp/
    For mid end yakiniku, I tend to go to Jojoen chain at Nishiazabu branch, which is their best rated one at Tabelog: http://www.jojoen.co.jp/
    On my upcoming trip, I will try Yoruniku, another high end yakiniku that is raved by my friend and highly ranked at Tabelog: http://r.gnavi.co.jp/a388101/
    For Horumon, my go to place is Kura but it is in Futako Tamagawa area which is quite far from most tourists area, perhaps not so convenient: http://r.tabelog.com/tokyo/A1317/A131...
    Many hounds like Jumbo chain, you may consider that too.

    1. Easy to find: Jojoen and Jumbo chains. I like Jojoen in Nishiazabu (actually there are two or three, but one is fairly high end, and more expensive than the other Jojoens - when you get to Nishiazabu Crossing coming from Roppongi, turn left. It's the third building I think (not to be mistaken with JuJu on the corner of the crossing).

      Jumbo do lots and lots of different cuts of beef, some quite rare (maybe 20 different cuts). I like the Shirogane branch.

      For off-the-beaten-path yakiniku, I like Le beouf in Yoga (I think that's how it's spelt; in any event, it is a misspelled version of the French word). Very odd place with about 200 star wars and other action figures and Bob Marley playing non-stop. 2 hour queues starting an hour before they open, but worth it. Try to google it. 15 minutes' walk from Yoga station. It's an interesting experience, but if you are here for a short time, Jumbo and Jojoen will do the trick without this much effort.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Asomaniac

        Last time has been 2 years ago, the name of the place is Yakiniku Gyuubei in Shibuya(in front of Bunkamura) :
        http://www.sunnypages.jp/travel_guide...
        I couldnt move after that one ! Exactly 3 plates ordered !

      2. I like the Toraji chain more than Jojoen. There's one on the top of the Dentsu building which is pretty nice, with views of Tsukiji and Tokyo bay from the 46F. http://www.ebisu-toraji.com/shop-info...

        1. my vote for jumbo shiragane. try their misuji and zabuton, rare cuts which are not on their regular menu. the meat literally melt in your mouth.

          1. How easy is it to order different cuts if you can't read much of the menu? My Japanese has largely been forgotten :(

            4 Replies
            1. re: janethepain

              we visited jumbo shirogane ~5 months ago -- and we speak zero japanese. at that branch, they gave us a picture / english menu, so it was very easy to order different cuts. strangely, though, i don't think their more expensive cuts were listed on that menu -- if i remember correctly i had to point to a sign on the wall to get an order of their basic big fat steak for 8000yen.

                1. re: janethepain

                  they used to have an "inner" menu vs the regular menu--even my friends who live in tokyo didn't know that. I usually just order what i want without looking at the menu: misuji and zabuton. i just checked their website and they have revised their menu to include the rare cuts. http://www.kuroge-wagyu.com/js/menu/ but haven't been for like 4 months, so haven't seen the new menu. you can print the pages if you want to be sure you can order.

                  one tip is that these good cuts are very filling, so don't order too much at once. also, alternating with some cheaper cuts like harami (outside skirt), kalbi, and loin would be a good idea, not coz of the wallet but coz it could be too greasy to swallow all the good cuts in one meal. btw, their noharayaki is a must try--basically it's yakiniku eaten like sukiyaki.

                  1. re: japanesefoodlover

                    THanks SO much for the good advice - I love offal and can't wait to try this place.

            2. I`ve been introduced to high-end Japanese yakiniku by a real enthusiast here. We have been to Yoroniku twice, which is in Nishi Azabu, about a 1min walk from L`Effervessence. It absolutely blew me away. I can`t elaborate on the cost as I didn`t pay but don`t think it would be cheap (think 10-15k for 2people with drinks) but damn its good. We get a set dinner which starts with 3 cold condiments (kimchi, cucumber etc) and 3 cold meats (finely sliced kimchi tripe, just barely seared fillet, and seared beef dice in a marinade) then comes the different cuts of Japanese beef which differs in its place of origin everyday depending on quality. Was from Shinsyu one time and Hokkaido the other. The waiters usually cook the beef for us but you can too if you like. It is incredible melt in your mouth, perfectly seasoned beef. There is no slightly odd taste to the fat like you get with Wagyu in Australia, you feel like you can sit there for hours just eating these thin, seared, glorious morsels. There is usually heart (which is a nice lean contrast), tongue, and last time we had stomach. All amazing. After comes cold soba in a very light dashi, this is the perfect cleanser and refresher. Then dessert which has been simple icecream or shaved condensed milk ice. And tea of course. The beers here on tap are served so cold that just below the frothy head there is the barely noticeable slushy sensation which melts just enough when you drink it for it to not be a nuisance. Also a good selection of shochu and Nihonshu.
              The restaurant is very elegant with good service but there is no english spoken or english menu. It is hard to find, very hard, how even Japanese know about this place- I don`t know. It doesn`t have a sign outside and is set slightly in from the footpath. There is just a grey curtain in the doorway which you duck under and then proceed down a few stairs to the restaurant. One big tip is it is right next door to a Mini-Stop convenience store, and about 7-10min walk from Omote Sando station.
              Yoroniku 6-6-22 B1F Nishi Azabu ph. 03-3498-4629
              They are only open for dinner but not sure which days sorry.

              The next great place I have been to is called Ebisu Champion Penthouse. This one too is fantastic maybe just 1point below Yoroniku. The flavours are a little more full-on and beef slightly fattier. They specialise in their marinades which are incredible. You cook your own beef here. It starts with cold condiments (cucumber, kimchi etc) and hot korean braised beef in a light broth with daikon-can`t remember the name, and salad with an awesome dressing and raw marinated beef served in tin foil (so you can cook it... your not supposed to- thats just the law now that they can`t serve raw meat thats not intended to be cooked). Then the beef, and there was a lot. It was all incredible and in such a great marinade. It gives it this slightly beurre-noisette, soy, caramely flavour. The only offal we had was intestine which was ok but needed a little seasoning. For dessert was Anin Doufu which was delicious and perfectly set like a good pannacotta. And Jasmine tea. I really liked this place, nice restaurant, good service and the meat was great. Somewhere that would be great to come with some friends and have a few drinks and fatty beef.
              Ebisu Champion Penthouse 9F 1-9-3 Ebisu 150-0021 ph. 03-5784-0029. Its from the East exit of Ebisu stn, turn left at the Koban and it is accross the road on your right on the corner of the main street and a small side road with lots of guys outside trying to get you into their restaurants.

              1 Reply
              1. re: NZJoe

                Only in Japan would you name a restaurant "Ebisu Champion Penthouse" with a straight face.