Tokyo Restaurants

Tokyo is undoubtedly one of the most exciting dining cities in the world. Seasonal ingredients reign supreme here, and there's an emphasis on freshness—not surprising given raw seafood is the cornerstone of sushi. And though Tokyoites still stubbornly resist foreign concepts in many fields, the locals have embraced outside culinary styles with gusto.

While newer restaurants targeting younger diners strive for authenticity in everything from New York–style bagels to Neapolitan pizza, it is still not uncommon to see menus serving East-meets-West concoctions such as spaghetti topped with cod roe and shredded seaweed. That said, the city’s best French and Italian establishments can hold their own on a global scale. Naturally, there's also excellent Japanese cuisine available throughout the city, ranging from the traditional to nouveau, which can be shockingly expensive.

That is not to imply that every meal in the city will drain your finances—the current rage is all about "B-kyu gurume" (B-class gourmet), restaurants that fill the gap between nationwide chains and fine cuisine, serving tasty Japanese and Asian food without the extra frills of tablecloths and lacquerware. All department stores and most skyscrapers have at least one floor of restaurants that are accessible, affordable, and reputable.

Asakusa is known for its tempura, and Tsukiji prides itself on its fresh sashimi, which is available in excellent quality throughout the city. Ramen is a passion for many locals, who travel across town or stand in line for an hour in order to sit at the counter of a shop rumored to have the perfect balance of noodles and broth. Even the neighborhood convenience stores will offer colorful salads, sandwiches, and a selection of beer and sake. There have been good and affordable Indian and Chinese restaurants in the city for decades. As a result of increased travel by the Japanese to more exotic locations, Thai, Vietnamese, and Turkish restaurants have popped up around the city. When in doubt, note that Tokyo's top-rated international hotels also have some of the city's best places to eat and drink.

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  • 1. Enju

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    The grand exterior and pristine banquet rooms are somewhat uninviting and overly formal at this upscale restaurant in the quiet surroundings...Read More

  • 2. Inakaya East

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    The style here is robatayaki, a dining experience that segues into pure theater. Inside a large U-shape counter, two cooks in traditional...Read More

  • 3. New York Grill

    $$$$ | Shinjuku-ku | International

    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...Read More

  • 4. Nihonbashi Yukari

    $$$$ | Nihombashi | Japanese

    Anyone looking to experience Japanese haute cuisine in a more relaxed atmosphere should look to this kappo -style restaurant, where diners...Read More

  • 5. Ume no Hana

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    The exclusive specialty here is tofu, prepared in more ways than you can imagine—boiled, steamed, stir-fried with minced crabmeat, served in...Read More

  • 6. Azure 45

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | French

    For his Michelin-starred contemporary French creations, chef de cuisine Shintaro Miyazaki sources the finest Japanese beef, poultry, seafood...Read More

  • 7. Barbacoa Grill

    $$$$ | Shibuya-ku | Brazilian

    Carnivores flock here for the great-value, all-you-can-eat Brazilian grilled chicken and barbecued beef, which the efficient waiters keep bringing...Read More

  • 8. Heichinro

    $$$$ | Chiyoda-ku | Chinese

    A short walk from the Imperial Hotel, this branch of one of Yokohama's oldest and best Chinese restaurants commands a spectacular view of the...Read More

  • 9. Kappo Ajioka

    $$$$ | Chuo-ku | Japanese

    The appeal of Ajioka's seasonal specialties like fugu (puffer fish) and suppon (Japanese turtle) lies as much in the unique texture and experience...Read More

  • 10. Kisoji

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    The specialty here is shabu-shabu : thin slices of beef cooked in boiling water at your table and dipped in sauce. Kisoji, which has been serving...Read More

  • 11. Kyubey

    $$$$ | Ginza | Japanese

    In contrast to the borderline solemn atmosphere at many top sushi restaurants, this world-famous restaurant proves that a high-end sushi restaurant...Read More

  • 12. Ninja Akasaka

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    In keeping with the air of mystery you'd expect from a ninja-theme restaurant, a ninja-costumed waiter leads you through a dark underground...Read More

  • 13. Oshima

    $$$$ | Ginza | Japanese

    The main draw at Oshima is sampling the Kaga ryori cooking of Kanazawa, a small city on the Sea of Japan known for its rich craft traditions...Read More

  • 14. Rangetsu

    $$$$ | Ginza | Japanese

    Japan enjoys a special reputation for its lovingly raised, tender, marbled domestic beef, and if your budget can bear the weight, Rangetsu serves...Read More

  • 15. Sankoen

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Korean

    In a neighborhood thick with Korean-barbecue joints, Sankoen stands out as the best of the lot. Korean barbecue is a smoky affair; you cook...Read More

  • 16. Signature

    $$$$ | Nihombashi | French

    This elegant French restaurant on the 37th floor of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel has wonderful views of the Tokyo skyline as well an open kitchen...Read More

  • 17. Sushisho Masa

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | Japanese

    Diners here need a dose of luck—there are only seven counter seats and reservations fill up fast. You also need a full wallet, as high-end sushi...Read More

  • 18. Tableaux

    $$$$ | Shibuya-ku | Eclectic

    This restaurant may lay on more glitz than necessary—the mural in the bar depicts the fall of Pompeii, the banquettes are upholstered in red...Read More

  • 19. Tapas Molecular Bar

    $$$$ | Nihombashi | Japanese

    Occupying a mysterious place between traditional sushi counter, tapas bar, science lab, and magic show, this award-winning restaurant breaks...Read More

  • 20. Towers

    $$$$ | Minato-ku | American

    When you're looking for a break from all the ramen, tempura, and yakitori, this restaurant on the 45th floor of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel serves...Read More

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