Tokyo-Food courts

Old Mar 10th, 2016, 08:07 AM
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Tokyo-Food courts

Ok now understand that we are not foodies, no chi chi cuisine, we do not eat sushi or fish, we stick to shrimp tempura and beef teriyaki and fried rice. Now having said that I am finding it difficult to line up reasonable places to eat. I am reading that the department stores have great food halls in the basements but it's take away, no place to sit down. We are wondering if there are food courts where we each can have our choice of food to eat. We have pretty simple tastes. We will have breakfast in the hotel each day but would need some ideas for lunch. We are staying athe Hilton Tokyo Shinkiyu.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 08:41 AM
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No food courts I can think of as they have here in the US. That said Tokyo has its share of Dennys, KFC's, McDonalds,Starbucks, etc. along with their Japanese counterparts (Yoshinoya, etc.) which are so much better lol. There are so many places to eat at that you would be hard pressed to figure out where to go. Little tonkatsu shops, ramen shops, etc. I think you are staying in the Shinjuku area? There are a plethora of eating restaurants in and around Shinjuku station....I mean literally hundreds of places from sushi to teriyaki. Out the Hilton front door, take a right and across the street is a Royal Host restaurant the Japanese version of a coffee shop. We eat lunch there at least once on every trip to Japan lol.

For more ideas see here:

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2028_food.html

Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Old Mar 10th, 2016, 08:48 AM
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What does this mean "line up reasonable places to eat"? Are you talking prices, location, ambiance, other?

I'm not sure what you're reading, but if you're staying at the Hilton Tokyo ShinJUKU, then you're going to be thisclose to Shinjuku station and there are probably 100 places to eat there. That number includes dozens of sit-down restaurants in and around the department stores most of which cater to specific foods - a teriyaki resto, a hibachi resto, a tonkatsu resto, a ramen resto, etc. The Odakyu department store alone has more than 2 dozen restaurants WITHIN it and that does NOT include the food halls in the basement. This does not mention the numerous restaurants in Shinjuku station itself or the various restos that your hotel will have.

This situation occurs at each of the main Tokyo area stations - Shinjuku, Shinagawa, Tokyo, Ueno, etc.

And there are TONS of non-Japanese food options in Japan.

Go to timeout.com for more.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 10:58 AM
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MrsBillT,
You should have no problem finding good eating in Tokyo, which has become a major food destination.

BigRuss, good tip on Timeout, last week I mapped some of their Wagyu spots, also a good section on cheap eats

Two other food sites I've found useful are,

bento.com
http://bento.com/tokyofood.html

tabelog
http://tabelog.com/en/
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 11:04 AM
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Yokocho alleys which are popular with locals are another possibility for you to check out. These are small aka chochin (red lantern taverns) usually open late afternoon to the early morning hours, serving a variety of reasonably priced food and drinks. Here are a couple of links to explore, I'm familiar with the one in Ebisu.

https://www.gotokyo.org/en/tourists/...ipche4n17jqj34

http://www.timeout.com/tokyo/restaur...alleyway-guide
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 01:12 PM
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Who told you that you cannot sit down in the department store food courts? They always have seating areas. In fact, on my last trip to Japan, I ate almost every meal in department store food courts, and never had a problem. It's the best way to go--the selection is huge, the food is good, and the price is right.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 01:16 PM
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Tripadvisor reviews on the department stores indicated that you could not eat at these food halls.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 01:34 PM
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I didn't go to Tokyo on my last trip, but I do remember there being simple chairs and tables awhile back. Maybe they removed them. The food is always wrapped up perfectly, and they give you a blue ice packet so you could literally eat anywhere with it.

Also, I do remember that one of the Ginza department stores had little mini-restaurants in the basement. We had some nice sushi there on our arrival evening.

I really like picking up take out food in Japanese department stores, and then heading back to my room, and eating on my bed while watching a Japanese cooking show. Who wants to sit in a restaurant after ten hours of sightseeing?
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 02:13 PM
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It's worth noting that the food halls in Tokyo department stores are not the same as the restaurants in department stores. In the food halls, you can generally only get food to go; however, we have eaten at many affordable sit-down restaurants, located in department stores. As an example, here is a link to the floor guide of the Shinjuku Takashimaya store.

https://www.takashimaya.co.jp/shinju...ion/floor.html

The basement is where the food halls are located. The top 3 floors have at least a couple dozen restaurants to choose from. As mentioned above, all the major train stations also have fast, affordable restaurants as well. We never had a problem finding a place to eat in Tokyo.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 03:43 PM
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>

You are misunderstanding the reviews or the reviewers are off their heads.

The "food halls" you are referring to are in department store basements and are like the basement at Macy's in NYC or the food halls at Harrod's - takeaway food, packaged foods, in-store prep'd foods, etc. This is completely separate and apart from the DOZEN or more restaurants available in the department stores that ARE NOT IN THE BASEMENT.

Just go to the Odakyu website for its Shinjuku store - the restaurants are on upper floors and scattered throughout the store with concentrations of them on certain levels. They have seating areas. If you're in Tokyo for a week, you can get lunch and dinner at a different restaurant each day and you won't run out.

Similarly, the Isetan department store (on the far side of Shinjuku station from your hotel) has 16 restaurants on its 7th floor, another 6 cafes scattered throughout and a bunch of restos near the parking areas (http://isetan.mistore.jp.e.az.hp.tra...ant/index.html).

Go to the source, don't rely upon TA or even helpful hands on this site.
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Old Mar 10th, 2016, 05:09 PM
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These are some of my favorite multi use building food centers

Coredo - Nihonbashi
http://31urban.jp/lng/eng/muromachi.html

Also if in this area check out fruit shop Sembikiya
http://www.sembikiya.co.jp/en/

Marunouchi Building - Brick Square - Marunouchi
http://www.marunouchi.com/e/shoplist...u/gourmet.html

Yodobashi Akiba - Akihabara
http://www.yodobashi-akiba.com/restaurant/index.html
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Old Mar 11th, 2016, 05:12 AM
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I don't think you'll have any issues with food in Japan. There are thousands of simple restaurants that serve grilled food, mostly meats and vegetables if you want them. I ate several meals in and around the train stations in Japan. On little streets you'll find a dozen restaurants serving yakitori (grilled skewers) and ramen. Menus are pretty similar, so once you find something you like at these little places, you'll be able to find any number of others serving similar food.

We had some of our best lunches with ramen in very simple restaurants.

In Tokyo, I also enjoyed the very touristy Gonpachi Nishiazabu. You absolutely need a reservation (perhaps a couple of days in advance), but the food is wonderful, and while it was the most expensive place I ate in Tokyo, it was only about $40 per person, and we drank a lot, too. You'll need a taxi to find it, but it's also not far from the subway, so you could do that to come back.
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Old Mar 11th, 2016, 10:22 AM
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Are there not still windows full of real-looking plastic food outside many restaurants? These give a good idea of what a certain plate includes, and if pressed, you can resort to beckoning the server outside to point to what you want to order.
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