119 Best Restaurants in Tokyo, Japan

Andy's Shin Hinomoto

$$ | Chiyoda-ku Fodor's choice

Also known as "Andy's," this izakaya is located directly under the tracks of the Yamanote Line, making the wooden interior shudder each time a train passes overhead. It's a favorite with local and foreign journalists and is actually run by a Brit, Andy, who travels to the seafood market every morning to buy seafood. Don't miss the fresh sashimi and buttered scallops. It fills up very quickly, so call at least the day in advance to make a reservation.

2–4–4 Yurakucho, Tokyo, 100-0006, Japan
03-3214–8021
Known For
  • favorite among Tokyo expats
  • expansive menu
  • cozy, lively atmosphere
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun. No lunch, Reservations essential

Baird Beer Taproom Harajuku

$$$ | Shibuya-ku Fodor's choice

Founded by American Bryan Baird in 2000, Baird Brewing has become one of the leaders in Japan's now booming craft-beer movement, with a range of year-round brews, such as the hop-heavy Suruga Bay IPA, and creative seasonal beers that use local ingredients such as yuzu citrus and even wasabi. The Harajuku Taproom combines Baird's excellent lineup of microbrews with Japanese izakaya (pub) fare like yakitori (grilled chicken skewers), gyoza (dumplings), and curry rice. The Taproom's rotation of 15 beers on tap, plus two hand-pumped ales, as well as its quality food and friendly atmosphere make it a must for beer lovers and dispel any notion that all Japanese beers taste the same. There are other branches in Naka Meguro, Takadanobaba, Kichijoji, and Yokohama.

Cicada

$$$ | Minato-ku Fodor's choice

Offering up high-end Mediterranean cuisine in an incredibly stylish setting, Cicada's resortlike atmosphere feels a world away from Omotesando's busy shopping streets. In the warmer months, the outdoor patio is especially relaxing. The menu ranges from Spanish tapas and Middle Eastern mezze to hearty grilled meats and seafood. An expansive wine list and craft beers complement the range of cuisine, and the outdoor bar makes a great spot for a nightcap. Though spacious, this popular restaurant fills up quickly, so dinner reservations are recommended.

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Inakaya East

$$$$ | Minato-ku Fodor's choice

The style here is robatayaki, a dining experience that segues into pure theater. Inside a large U-shape counter, two cooks in traditional garb sit on cushions behind a grill, with a cornucopia of food spread out in front of them: fresh vegetables, seafood, and skewers of beef and chicken. You point to what you want, and your server shouts out the order. The cook in back plucks your selection up out of the pit, prepares it, and hands it across on an 8-foot wooden paddle. Inakaya is open from 5 pm and fills up fast after 7. If you can't get a seat here, there is another branch, Inakaya West, on the other side of Roppongi Crossing.

3--14--17 Roppongi, Tokyo, 106-0032, Japan
03-3408–5040
Known For
  • entertaining service
  • fresh ingredients grilled just right
  • fun, lively atmosphere
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No lunch, Reservations not accepted

Kushiyaki Ganchan

$$$ | Minato-ku Fodor's choice

Smoky, noisy, and cluttered, Ganchan is exactly what the Japanese expect of their yakitori joints—restaurants that specialize in bits of charcoal-broiled chicken and vegetables. The counter here seats barely 15, and you have to squeeze to get to the chairs in back. Festival masks, paper kites, lanterns, and greeting cards from celebrity patrons adorn the walls. The cooks yell at each other, fan the grill, and serve up enormous schooners of beer. Try the tsukune (balls of minced chicken) and the fresh asparagus wrapped in bacon. Otherwise opt for a mixed eight-skewer set that also comes with several small side dishes. The place stays open until 1:30 am (midnight on Sunday).

6–8–23 Roppongi, Tokyo, 106-0032, Japan
03-3478–0092
Known For
  • eclectic decor
  • cozy, down-to-earth atmosphere
  • fills up on weekends
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No lunch

New York Grill

$$$$ | Shinjuku-ku Fodor's choice

The Park Hyatt's 52nd-floor bar and restaurant may have come to international fame thanks to Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation, but expats and locals have long known that it's one of the most elegant places to take in Tokyo's nighttime cityscape over a steak or cocktail. The restaurant menu showcases excellent steaks and grilled seafood in the evening, and has one of the city's best lunch buffets during the day. If the restaurant is out of your budget, come instead to the bar when it opens (before the ¥2,200 evening cover charge is added to your bill) and enjoy a drink as the sun sets over the city. The cover charge for the bar starts at 8 pm every day but Sunday, when it starts at 7 pm.

Nihonbashi Yukari

$$$$ | Chuo-ku Fodor's choice

Anyone looking to experience Japanese haute cuisine in a more relaxed atmosphere should look to this kappo-style restaurant, where diners order and eat at the counter. Third-generation chef—and 2002 Iron Chef champion—Kimio Nonaga displays his artistry in every element of Nihonbashi Yukari's menu. Dinner here is a multicourse affair, with each dish showcasing the freshness and quality of the seasonal ingredients. To witness him at work, and get the full kappo dining experience, be sure to request a counter seat when making reservations. As a bonus, Nihonbashi Yukari also offers a lunch setting for a fraction of the price of dinner, which is unusual for this kind of restaurant.

3–2–14 Nihonbashi, Tokyo, Japan
03-3271–3436
Known For
  • excellent kappo-style lunch sets
  • affordable for high-end kappo dining
  • chef Nonaga's creative take on Japanese cuisine
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun., Reservations essential

Robata Honten

$$$ | Chiyoda-ku Fodor's choice

Old, funky, and more than a little cramped, Robata is a bit daunting at first, but fourth-generation chef-owner Takao Inoue holds forth here with an inspired version of Japanese home cooking. He's also a connoisseur of pottery and serves his food on pieces acquired at famous kilns all over the country. There's no menu; just tell Inoue-san how much you want to spend, and leave the rest to him. A meal at Robata—like the pottery—is simple to the eye but subtle and fulfilling. Typical dishes include steamed fish with vegetables, stews of beef or pork, and seafood salads.

1--3--8 Yurakucho, Tokyo, 100-0006, Japan
03-3591–1905
Known For
  • country-style izakaya
  • no menu
  • dishes served on unique pottery collection
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed some Sun. each month. No lunch

Ume no Hana

$$$$ | Minato-ku Fodor's choice

The exclusive specialty here is tofu, prepared in more ways than you can imagine—boiled, steamed, stir-fried with minced crabmeat, served in a custard, or wrapped in thin layers around a delicate whitefish paste. Tofu is touted as the perfect high-protein, low-calorie health food; at Ume no Hana it's raised to the elegance of haute cuisine. Remove your shoes when you step up to the lovely central room. Latticed wood screens separate the tables, and private dining rooms with tatami seating are available. Prix-fixe meals, from ¥5,000 to ¥8,000 at dinner, include a complimentary aperitif, while lunchtime is very budget-friendly considering the quality (courses from ¥2,100). Ume no Hana shops in Ueno and Ginza are also worth visiting.

Afuri

$ | Shibuya-ku

Ramen is the quintessential Japanese fast food: thick Chinese noodles in a bowl of savory broth topped with sliced grilled chashu (pork loin). Each neighborhood in Tokyo has its favorite, and in Ebisu the hands-down favorite is Afuri. Using the picture menu, choose your ramen by inserting coins into a ticket machine, find a seat, and hand over your ticket to the cooks, who prepare your ramen then and there. There's limited seating, and at lunch and dinner, a line of customers extends down the street, but as expected, the ramen is worth it. The signature ramen here is yuzu shio (citron and salt), but there are other options, including a vegan ramen.

1–1–7 Ebisu, Tokyo, 150-0013, Japan
03-5795–0750
Known For
  • quick, affordable meals
  • refreshing shio ramen with yuzu
  • vegan ramen

Afuri Ramen Shinjuku Lumine

$ | Shinjuku-ku

Just south of the Shinjuku station, this chain ramen house serves up ramen with hints of citrus in the broth, turning this often heavy dish into something more refreshing. It's located on a basement food level of Shinjuku's Lumine I department store, so you can have the nearby Thai food instead should you peek in and change your mind.

Allpress Espresso Tokyo Roastery & Cafe

$ | Koto-ku

This small, friendly roastery and café in a repurposed warehouse across from Ando Gallery serves excellent espresso, flat whites, and cappuccinos, plus simple snacks like cookies and toasted sandwiches. There are some seats inside, but if the weather is nice get a drink to go and walk a few minutes east to Kiba Park; a lovely green spot to while away an hour.

Ameya

$

Ameya is a traditional sweet and snack store on Monzen-machi best known for a riff on the local soba theme. You don’t get soba noodles here, but rather "soba bread." Basically, it’s a steamed bun made with buckwheat (soba) flour, sugar, and rice flour, in which you can have one of four fillings: sweet red bean paste (anko), mustard greens (takana), daikon radish, and the very non-traditional keema curry.

5-15-10 Jindaiji-motomachi, Chofu, 182-0017, Japan
042-485--2768
Known For
  • soba bread (steamed buns)
  • traditional setting
  • take-out only
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No dinner

Azure 45

$$$$ | Minato-ku

For his Michelin-starred contemporary French creations, chef de cuisine Shintaro Miyazaki sources the finest Japanese beef, poultry, seafood, and vegetables from around the country. Served on the 45th floor of the Ritz-Carlton, the resulting prix-fixe lunch courses (from ¥5,800) come with a choice of four or five dishes from a changing monthly menu. For dinner there are chef's tasting menus, which are paired with wine selected by the hotel's sommelier. The dining room, decorated in soft beige, white, and black, and crowned with a city skyline view, provides the appropriate tony setting.

Barbacoa Churrascaria Aoyama

$$$$ | Shibuya-ku

Carnivores flock here for the all-you-can-eat Brazilian grilled chicken and barbecued beef, which the efficient waiters keep bringing to your table on skewers until you tell them to stop. It comes with a self-serve salad bar and for an extra fee all-you-can-drink beer, wine and other alcohol for two hours. Hardwood floors, lithographs of bull motifs, warm lighting, and salmon-colored tablecloths provide the backdrop. The drink menu provides the chance to try a selection of Brazilian cocktails. Look for the entrance just off Omotesando-dori on the Harajuku 2-chome shopping street (on the north side of Omotesando-dori), about 50 yards down on the left. There's also a Barbacoa near Tokyo Station, as well as others in Roppongi, Shibuya, and Shinjuku. Dinner with drinks can easily run ¥10,000 per person, but the weekday lunch buffet offers largely the same selection at a fraction of the price.

Bear Pond Espresso

$ | Setagaya-ku

This is possibly the best coffee in the neighborhood since that is essentially all they sell (save some branded merchandise). Sit on old wooden benches in this tiny establishment that feels as if it's both in the now, and from long ago. Look for the cute neon bear they have as their sign.

Beard Papa

$ | Shibuya-ku

Many long lines in Shibuya are more about trendiness than quality, but Beard Papa makes some genuinely good cream puffs in all kinds of flavors. Pick up a single or a six-pack of freshly made pastries. Located in the underground shopping arcade known as Shibuchika. The location is roughly under the main crossing. Head down some stairs and follow your nose to the vanilla and butter smells.

Binh Minh

$$ | Suginami-ku

Yakitori, Vietnamese-style, is on the menu at the bustling restaurant that feels it could have been transported from the streets of Hanoi. The skewers here include chicken thigh on or off the bone, chicken feet, and gizzards, but also vegetables such as okra and sweet treats like banana. The owners also run another no-frills Vietnamese restaurant called Chopsticks, serving excellent pho noodles, on the same block in Koenji’s north side.

3-22-8 Koenji Kita, Tokyo, 166-0002, Japan
03-3330--3992
Known For
  • Vietnamese grilled chicken
  • Vietnamese beer
  • lively vibe
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Tues. No lunch weekdays

Brown Rice by Neal's Yard Remedies

$$ | Shibuya-ku

Run by Neal's Yard Remedies, this laid-back café has all-natural wooden interiors and natural produce on the menu. If shopping in Harajuku, it's a great place to stop for a healthy Japanese teishoku set, vegetable curry, tofu lemon cake, or other vegan fare.

Cafe de l'ambre

$ | Chuo-ku

In business since 1948, Cafe de l'ambre is a legendary haunt for Tokyo's coffee aficionados. The retro decor provides a snapshot of an older Tokyo, while the caffeine fix options include a dozen or so single-origin beans, including some that have been aged for years.

Café Kitsuné Aoyama

$ | Minato-ku

Associated with the funky clothing shop that is just around the corner, this cafe is bright and open, and serves quality coffee, cakes, snacks, and gelato. They also have some Kitsuné-branded goods on hand.

Canteen

$ | Odaiba

Shopping and entertainment are two attractive points for Odaiba, but the chance for a short escape from Tokyo's madness is another. To enhance that, stop in at Canteen, a café operated by Transit General Office. The terrace seating is a fine choice for enjoying a cup of coffee and an ice-cream cake.

2–7–4 Aomi, Tokyo, 135-0064, Japan
03-5530–0261
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun.

Captain's Donut

$ | Setagaya-ku

Stop by and watch some specialty donuts being fried before your eyes. The giant cone outside reminds you that you can also get ice cream (soft-serve only), and there's coffee, too. Sit outside and watch the world go by as you get your sugar fix.

Kitazawa 2-7-5, Tokyo, Japan
03-6407--9691
Known For
  • fresh donuts
  • donuts made with soybean fiber leftover from tofu-making
  • great soft-serve ice cream

Citabria Baypark Grill and Bar

$$ | Odaiba

Stop off near the end of the Yurikamome Line and have dinner along the river bank before heading back to your hotel. The live DJ, order-at-bar service, and strong cocktails create a lively ambience, and classic western dishes can be ordered at your table via cellphone. There are often festivals here, so make sure to check the event schedule. 

6–4–26 Toyosu, Koto-ku, Tokyo, 135-0061, Japan
080-9179--5151
Known For
  • outdoor-only dining
  • pizza and fish-and-chips
  • fairy lights with river and city views
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Mon. to Wed.; No lunch Fri. and Thu.

Crayon House Hiroba

$$ | Shibuya-ku

Connected to a natural-foods store, and with natural airy wooden interiors to match, Crayon House serves Japanese and Western dishes with a common theme—it's all very healthy. Ninety-five percent of ingredients are organic, and the mixture of curries, pastas, salads, and other dishes are all wholesome. The lunchtime buffet is good value. The desserts taste as if the notion of health has been thrown out the window.

Dachibin

$$ | Suginami-ku

Koenji has many culinary bases covered, and with this izakaya it delivers Okinawan food and drink as authentically as you’ll find in Japan’s southern islands: thank the Okinawan owner for that. The menu features regional classics such as goya champuru (a stir fry of bitter gourd, spam, and tofu) and soki soba (noodles with pork sparerib meat), which you can chase down with Orion Beer and a firebrand of an island rice spirit called awamori. Like many Koenji venues, it runs late, opening daily from 5 pm to 5 am.

3-2-13 Koenji Kita, Tokyo, 166-0002, Japan
03-3337--1352
Known For
  • Okinawan dishes
  • awamori spirits
  • opens till 5 am
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: No lunch

Daikokuya Tempura

$$ | Taito-ku

Daikokuya, in the center of Asakusa's historic district, is a point of pilgrimage for both locals and tourists. The specialty here is shrimp tempura, and the menu choices are simple—tendon is tempura shrimp served over rice, and the tempura meal includes rice, pickled vegetables, and miso soup. Famished diners can add additional pieces of tempura or side dishes such as sashimi for an additional fee, or opt for a multi-dish course. When the line of waiting customers outside is too long, head to the shop's annex (bekkan) just around the corner.

Daily Chico

$ | Nakano-ku

This basement-level ice cream store has become a Nakano Broadway institution for its soft-serve ice cream, which comes in flavors that vary from simple vanilla to matcha (green tea), horse chestnut, and ramune (a popular citrus soda flavor). The signature is the eight-layered, 20-cm Tokudai (extra large) soft serve, though small cups and cones are also on the menu.

5-52-15 Nakano, Tokyo, 164-0001, Japan
03-3386--4461
Known For
  • eight-layered soft-serve ice cream
  • flavors like matcha
  • served in cups or cones

Darumaya

$ | Minato-ku

The classic bowl of ramen is topped with slices of pork, but Darumaya, in the fashion district of Omotesando, has a slightly different take, topping its noodles with grilled vegetables. In the summertime be sure to order the hiyashi soba, a bowl of chilled noodles topped with vegetables and ham in a sesame dressing. Another shop specialty is the tsukemen, where the noodles and broth are served in separate bowls. Dip (don't drop) the ramen into the broth. Despite the focus on veggies, vegetarians should note, the soups and sauces are not meat-free.

5–9–5 Minami-Aoyama, Tokyo, 107-0062, Japan
03-3499–6295
Known For
  • refreshing take on ramen
  • a quick, affordable lunch in a high-end area
  • one of few noodle shops in the neighborhood
Restaurants Details
Rate Includes: Closed Sun. and Mon.

eggcellent Roppongi Hills

$ | Roppongi

No surprise that eggs are the thing at this convenient diner on the first basement floor of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower. Eggs are organic and available every which way, including in egg tarts, eggs benedict, pancakes, and a fried breakfast.