Top ChoiceSushi in Odaiba & Tokyo Bay

Sushi Dai

There is no better-value sushi in Tokyo than the omakase (chef's choice) course here. The menu changes daily (and sometimes hourly), but you're guaranteed to get 10 pieces of nigiri (hand-pressed) sushi made from...

Top ChoiceGastronomy in Kōrakuen & Akihabara

Inua

German-born chef and Noma alumnus Thomas Frebel leads an international team of young chefs here at Inua, one of Tokyo's most talked about openings in recent years. With its focus on sourcing the best local...

Top ChoiceTofu in Karatsu

Kawashima Tōfu

On Kyōmachi covered arcade near the station, this renowned tofu shop has been in business since the Edo period and serves refined kaiseki, starring tofu plus other seasonal specialities, around a 10-seat counter...

Top ChoiceKaiseki in Roppongi, Akasaka & Around

Tofuya-Ukai

Tofuya-Ukai

One of Tokyo’s most gracious restaurants is located in a former sake brewery (moved from northern Japan), with an exquisite traditional garden in the shadow of Tokyo Tower. Seasonal preparations of tofu and...

Top ChoiceKaiseki in Roppongi, Akasaka & Around

Kikunoi

Kikunoi is one of Japan's storied ryōtei, the high-class restaurants that serves kaiseki (Japanese haute cuisine). Its Akasaka branch is (relatively speaking) more casual and approachable. English-speaking staff...

Top ChoiceRamen in Sapporo

Menya Saimi

Sapporo takes its ramen very seriously and Saimi is oft-voted the best ramen shop in the city (and sometimes the country) – and it's not overrated. You will have to queue, which is annoying, but you will be...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Asakusa & Sumida River

Kappō Yoshiba

Kappō Yoshiba

The former Miyagino sumo stable is the location for this one-of-a-kind restaurant that has preserved the dōyō (practice ring) as its centrepiece. Playing up to its sumo roots, you can order the protein-packed...

Top ChoiceSushi in Harajuku & Aoyama

sushi m

There are sushi shops that pride themselves on hewing to tradition and then there is sushi m (and blessedly Tokyo has room for both). Here there are two counters: the front one where chefs, led by Nakamura...

Top ChoiceBistro in Harajuku & Aoyama

Eatrip

Eatrip is one of the big players in Tokyo's farm-to-table organic movement. Chef Shiraishi Takayuki works closely with domestic producers and his cooking is more about coaxing out the natural flavours than...

Top ChoiceRamen in Fukuoka

Ichiran

Ichiran

This Fukuoka-born chain (since 1993) has a nationwide following. That's as much for its serving style as for its fresh noodles and 15-second kitchen-to-table rule. Customers fill out forms (available in English)...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Shinjuku & Northwest Tokyo

Kozue

It's hard to beat Kozue's combination of exquisite seasonal Japanese cuisine, artisan crockery and distractingly good views over Shinjuku. As the kimono-clad staff speak English and the restaurant caters well to...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Asakusa & Sumida River

Asakusa Imahan

Asakusa Imahan

Among the oldest and most famous of Tokyo's wagyū (Japanese beef) restaurants, Imahan (in business since 1895), specialises in courses of sukiyaki and shabu-shabu, thin slices of marbled beef are cooked in hot...

Top ChoiceNoodles in Imperial Palace & Around

Kanei

A small traditional place not far from Funaoka Onsen, Kanei is for soba connoisseurs – the noodles are made by hand and are delicious. The owners don’t speak much English, so here’s what to order: zaru soba (cold...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Harajuku & Aoyama

Sahsya Kanetanaka

Sahsya Kanetanaka is the entry level offshoot of exclusive kaiseki (haute cuisine) restaurant Kanetanaka. At lunch (served until 2pm) choose two mains (maybe thin sliced Japanese beef or sea bream) to go with...

Top ChoiceSeafood in Hakodate

Kikuyo Shokudo

Inside Hakodate Morning Market, Kikuyo Shokudo got its start in the 1950s as a counter joint to feed market workers and is now one of the top reasons to come to Hakodate. The speciality here is the Hakodate...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Fukuoka

Hakatarou

If you can't visit the rest of Kyūshū, try regional foods at this elegant izakaya. Look for dishes like karashi renkon (spicy, deep-fried lotus root) and basashi (horsemeat sashimi) from Kumamoto, grilled...

Top ChoiceNoodles in Northern Higashiyama

Omen

Omen

This elegant noodle shop, a five-minute walk from Ginkaku-ji, is named after the signature dish – thick white noodles that are served in broth with a selection of seven fresh vegetables. Choose from hot or cold...

Top ChoiceKaiseki in Downtown Kyoto

Giro Giro Hitoshina

Giro Giro takes traditional kaiseki and strips any formality so you're left with great food but in a boisterous atmosphere and with thousands more yen in your pocket. In a quiet lane near Kiyamachi-dōri, things...

Top ChoiceJapanese in Ueno & Yanesen

Innsyoutei

In a gorgeous wooden building dating to 1875, Innsyoutei (pronounced 'inshotei' and meaning 'rhyme of the pine cottage') has long been a favourite spot for fancy kaiseki-style meals while visiting Ueno-kōen....

Top ChoiceSeafood in Kurashiki

Mamakari-tei

This traditional eatery, in a 200-year-old warehouse with chunky beams and long wooden tables, is famed for mamakari, the sardine-like local speciality. The tasty fish is supposed to induce bouts of...