TIPS FOR TOKYO: EATING AND DRINKING
Irrashaimase! A few years ago I went to Tokyo to visit my best friend Jenny. We ate a lot. (Like a lot.) I totally recommend it. Although I can't be super specific at this point, I can nudge you towards the right things to eat and drink while in Tokyo. Itadakimasu!
- Eat kare-raisu. Curry and rice was brought to Japan by the British when India was under their rule - it's a sweet, sticky and delicious affair. I like it with ebi or tonkatsu, prawn or pork!
- Go to the delightfully nicknamed Shomben Yokocho (Piss Alley) in Shinjuku for yakiniku (grilled meat) and beer. Get skewers of delicious yakitori and a glass or three of delicious Sapporo.
- Go to a pastry shop, the Japanese do fine pastry, dare I say it, better than the French.
- Get sushi for breakfast in the outer market at Tokyo's Tsukiji Fish Market. And get melt in the mouth salmon and toro on rice.
- Order takoyaki (octopus balls) and okonomiyaki (cabbage pancakes).
- Fast food cravings? Get a rice burger at Mos Baagaa.
- Or get donburi (rice bowls) at a chain like Matsuya. Mmm gyudon. (beef bowl)
- Eat soba (buckwheat noodles in a lovely broth sprinkled with nori) standing up at a train station.
- Get waffles on Takeshita St or even better, get taiyaki someplace. Taiyaki are delicious fish shaped waffles filled with chocolate or custard.
- Like seeing your meat and veg cooked to perfection in front of you? You need teppanyaki.
- Want to cook it yourself? Get shabu-shabu.
- Go to an izakaya for sake, sawa (sour cocktails) and salted edamame.
- Visit a supermarket and stock up on gyoza (dumplings), green tea KitKats, mochi cakes, ridiculously good ramen and yakisoba with wasabi mayonnaise and other treats.
A few words about:
Ordering - You may have to place your order at an electronic coupon vending machine even at restaurants.
Sitting charges - Beware of these at some bars. Sitting charges only be revealed on your bill so ask before you sit down.
Freebies - That tiny plate of glass noodles your waiter set down at your table? It's not free. If you eat anything that's put in front of you, you're essentially accepting to pay for it.
Part two: Things to do in Tokyo can be found here.