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Food/Harajuku

Thursday, July 18, 2013 Category : FOOD

As every other district in Tokyo, Harajuku and Omotesando are full of cafes, restaurants and coffee shops which are usually very crowded at weekends. Some places are particularly good but the lines to get in can be very long. Here are some of the best places to eat:

Maisen

This restaurant serves one of the best tonkatsu in Japan. Tonkatsu is breaded, deep-fried pork cutlet usually served with a tangy sweet/salty sauce, shredded cabbage and miso soup. The average price here is around ¥1680.  Besides deep fried pork, you can treat yourself with deep fried shrimps, chicken, nikuman (steamed meat buns), sushi and udon. However tonkatsu is the restaruant’s specialty. Especially popular is korobuta tonkatsu (“black pork”), which is known for its juicy taste and high content of fat. Maisen tonkatsu is the tonkatsu, which you can cut with chopsticks because this deep fried meat is so soft and melts in the mouth. The place has an English menu as well. And if you are lucky to make it there by lunch time (around 11.00-13.00) you can get lunch set for ¥1000 only but be careful their lunch sets sell out very fast.

Another interesting thing about Maisen in Omotesando is that the building is a former World War II public bathhouse. The main dining room used to be changing room.

ADDRESS:  4-8-5 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku (11.00-22.00)

ACCESS: 5 minutes walk from Omotesando Exit A2 on Ginza Line.

WEBSITE: http://mai-sen.com

Harajuku Gyoza Ro

This place is so famous that it became another sight of Harajuku. Harajuku Gyoza Ro serves only gyoza (dumplings) but of excellent quality and amazing taste. You can order two types of gyoza: fried and steamed, with garlic and without. Besides, good quality this place offers food at a very good price: 6 gyoza will cost ¥290. Due to all these benefits Harajuku Gyoza is an extremely popular place and you may have to wait up to one hour to be seated. But it is definitely worth it. Another interesting point about this place is its opening hours. Unlike the majority of restaurants in this place, Harajuku Gyoza closes at 4 o’clock in the morning. Keeping in mind the close location of Shibuya with its vibrant clubs, it might be a good spot to go after partying or drinking. The restaurant also has an English menu.

ADDRESS: 6-4-2 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku (11.30-4.30)

ACCESS: 15 minutes walk from JR Yamanote Line to Harajuku

Kaffir Lime

Kaffir Lime is an authentic Thai restaurant located in Harajuku (right next to the already mentioned Gyoza place). Even if you are not a fan of spicy food this place will impress you with the range of great dishes. Green curry, Indonesian fried rice and chicken with nuts are of special recommendation. No need to mention salads are fresh here and portions are generous so you can share it with your friends. The Japanese menu has an English translation. The only drawback is that the place is rather small and you may have to wait in line for a while. The price starts with ¥1000 per lunch and from ¥2500 for dinner course.

ADDRESS: 6-4-2F Jingumae, Shibuya-ku. Tel: 03-3400-2918 (11.30-15.00; 17.30-23.00 )

Starbucks

There are plenty of Starbucks shops around Harajuku and Omotesando but the one on the 6th floor of Tokyu Plaza is simply splendid. This is because of the awesome rooftop terrace. On a sunny day this is a perfect spot for parents with kids- the terrace is spacious and there is a little performance with clowns every day. In the afternoon the terrace is illuminated and lounge music starts is played in the background. The menu in this shop impresses as well. Besides, regular coffee and cake menu, they serve savory and sweet pastry and a huge variety of sweets.   A perfect place for lazy chill-out with friends or a date. Another advantage of the terrace: this place is popular but most of the time it’s easy to get a seat.

ADDRESS: 4-30-3 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku 150-0001 7F Tokyu Plaza Omotesando Harajuku

ACCESS: 4-minute walk from JR Yamanote Line Harajuku Station; 1-minute walk from Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line Meiji Jingumae Station

Bills

The Australian restaurant based in Sydney is known to serve “the best breakfast in the world”.  The restaurant is located on the 7th floor of Tokyu Plaza in Harajuku. The signature dish of Bills is ricotta pancakes but many people praise the scrambled eggs served in this restaurant for their soft and fluffy texture. Anyway if you have time and do not mind spending some money on great food, this is the place to visit. But keep in mind that as for any good place in Tokyo this restaurant is extremely popular and you may wait up to 3 hours. However, the food is going to be worth the wait!

ADDRESS: 4-30-3 Jingu-mae, Shibuya-ku, 150-0001 7F Tokyo Plaza Omotesando Harajuku (8.30-23.00)

ACCESS: 4-minute walk from JR Yamanote Line Harajuku Station; 1-minute walk from Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line Meiji Jingumae Station

 

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