04 November 2015

Tokyo September 2015 - Part II Food in Tokyo

Continued from Part I - Century Southern Tower, some Shinjuku area

This post is all about food, basically some of the meals we had over the 5-6 days.

Day 1 - Dinner at Gansozushi Sushi Restaurant, Shinjuku

Our first meal in Tokyo had to be sushi (that would make the man happy). As it was drizzling, we dined at the sushi shop about 5 mins from our hotel, located at a corner by the road junction opposite the JR Shinjuku Station.

This is a small size conveyor belt sushi restaurant at very reasonable prices, and most importantly quality is quite good.

2 styles of raw shrimp/ebi. Left: surface of the shrimp was first grilled using blowtorch and then topped with mayo, grilled again, finally topped with salmon roe/ikura. Right: topping was fish roe/mentaiko.

They were so delish, the freshness of raw shrimp combined with creamy mayo, salty ikura/mentaiko with a tinge of grilled taste worked surprisingly well.

We had to try the same combination with raw scallop/hotate and oyster, but these were not as good as shrimp.

Left: hamachi. Right: amaebi.

Left: Anago eel. Right: Ikura salmon roe.

Some Asari/clam miso soup to warm the tummy. 15 plates in total, not too many :p Price was 2/3 that of SG.

Day 2 - Lunch at Unatoto, Shinjuku

Set our minds on unagi rice, so skipped lunch and went out for early lunch. So glad that our favourite unagi eatery, Unatoto has a branch in Shinjuku, we didn't have to travel all the way to Shimbashi.

The shop is located in the business district and open for half day only during weekends since it caters mainly for the office lunch crowd.

Both of us ordered a double unagi don each, and salad, eel liver soup and pickled radish/cucumber to share. The double unadon is only 1000 yen, a total steal for 2 large and fat pieces of grilled eel over a generous serving of rice. The eel here is grilled using charcoal and with a special sauce which is sweet and salty.

The eel was succulent, tender with a bit of charred taste, seriously good! I ate more rice than I ought to, because it was just so yummy!

Day 2 - Dinner at El Torito, Shinjuku

This is one of our favourite restaurant in Tokyo, very convenient since it's located at the ground floor of Century Southern Tower. Surprisingly, the Mexican food served here is not bad, especially the fajitas with freshly made tortillas.

Complimentary nacho chips with a fiery salsa sauce.

Some salad to go with the meal.

We love this appetiser, Fried Cream Cheese and Avocado in Tortilla, served with a sour cream dressing. A must order every time.

Mixed seafood, chicken and beef fajitas.

And the freshly made tortillas which was soft and slightly chewy. Yums!

Just take some grilled vegetables like onion and capsicum, with meat of choice, top with some sour cream, avocado and chilli, wrap and eat!

Day 3 - Lunch at Jiyugaoka Burger (will be covered in another post)

Day 3 - Dinner at Gyu-Kaku Yakiniku, Shibuya

We had cravings for grill beef so decided to pop into Gyu-Kaku BBQ restaurant. See this chain of restaurants very often, finally had the chance to give it a try. The branch we first visited only sits 24 people and the queue was more than 2hrs, so the staff advised us to proceed to a bigger branch just a few minutes' walk away.

Even then, we had to wait for about 30 mins. The shop was popular with young adults as they had an eat-all-you-can buffet within 90 mins (2980 yen per pax/70 items, 3580 yen/100 items, 4280 yen/110 items) and we could see that they really ate a lot!

For us, old already, cannot eat buffet anymore lah. So we simply ordered a few types of meat and side dishes.
3 types of sauces to dip the grill meats.

Must have some greens to balance the heavy weights. We also ordered some kimchi, glad to see it on the menu.

Nowadays, we find Japanese BBQ a bit boring as compared to Korean BBQ. You see, for Korean BBQ, the meat could be eaten with kimchi, or wrapped in lettuce and eaten with ssamjang, as well as delicious banchan/side dishes. But Japanese BBQ is just meat and sauces, felt overwhelming after a while.

Day 4 - Lunch at Aoyama Flower Market Tea House (will be covered in another post)

Day 4 - Dinner at Katsukura, Takashimaya Times Square, Shinjuku

It's always a must for me to eat at least one meal of tonkatsu when I'm in Japan, simply love biting into a tender and juicy piece of pork cutlet fried to perfect crisp!

We were too lazy and tired (after a full day of shopping) so we just explored the restaurants opposite our hotel. There's always a tonkatsu restaurant at any shopping mall. Came across this Kyoto chain of tonkatsu restaurant and it looks good.

Single seats upon entering the restaurant, with partially open kitchen.

There are 3 different types of sauces to go with the cabbage and tonkatsu.

Also given a bowl of sesame seeds. I love grinding the sesame seeds to allow the oils and aroma to be fully released.
Barley rice was served in a container where we could help ourselves as and when we wanted. Perfect for me as I only took a few tablespoons of rice (didn't have to ask for less rice or waste any rice).

My set meal, came with pork cutlet and a special yuba rolled vegetable cutlet, unlimited servings of cabbage, rice, miso soup and tea.

Love this yuba veg roll, yuba (beancurd skin) wrapped with mashed yam, spinach, carrot, mushroom, konnyaku and deep fried. Yummy!

Day 5 - Lunch at Udon shop, Shinjuku

The hubby had a medical emergency and by the time we were done at a clinic, it was noon time. We just settled for a simple udon meal at the nearby eatery before sending him back to the hotel to rest.

This was an autumn special udon, Shippoku udon, basically just assorted vegetables like burdock root, carrot, shiitake mushroom, fishcake, yuba (beancurd) cooked with udon. I'm not a big fan of udon, so this was not so-so only.

The eatery also had an assortment of tempura items for customers to pick and choose to go along with the udon. We selected shrimp, eggplant and the ginger slices (yes the red colour one). Once again, nothing to shout about as the tempura were cold and a bit oily.

Day 5 - Dinner, takeaway soup and rice from Soup Stock Tokyo.

I'm a big fan of Soup Stock Tokyo. As the hubby was resting at the hotel, I ta-baoed some food back for him and for myself, my favourite Soup Stock Tokyo. This was the chicken and vegetable soup, with some multi-grain rice, nutritious and wholesome meal.

Day 6 - Lunch at Hantejiya Century Southern Tower

Have been eyeing this Korean restaurant, so decided to have our last lunch in Tokyo here.

This Korean restaurant seemed to be very popular among the office crowd.

Service was prompt and friendly.

We ordered a set meal which came with a noodle and a small rice bowl to share. With this set meal, one person could enjoy free-flow side dishes (only one pax since only one set meal ordered, sharing not allowed). There were lettuce, cabbage, beansprout, seaweed, potato salad, kimchi, sweet corn and pickles.

Hubby's noodles, which he said was very nice. I let him have the salad bar, as I didn't want to over-induldge.

My small size bibimbap which was already very fulfilling for me.

The food here was surprisingly good! I think we gonna return next time round to try their BBQ.

End of Part II. Stay tuned for Part III on Jiyugaoka!

Travel resources:

  • GansoZushi 元祖寿司 http://www.gansozushi.com/
  • Unatoto 宇奈とと http://www.unatoto.com/
  • El Torito エルトリート http://www.eltorito.jp/#_=_
  • Gyu Kaku 牛角 http://www.gyukaku.ne.jp/
  • Katsukura かつくら新宿高島屋店 http://www.fukunaga-tf.com/katsukura/index.html
  • Soup Stock Tokyo http://www.soup-stock-tokyo.com/
  • Hantejiya 韓豚屋 http://www.hantejiya.jp/
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