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Creative Cuisine Spots in Japan

  • Shari the Tokyo Sushi Bar
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Tokyo Chuou-ku Ginza 2-4-18 Albore Ginza Building 8F
    A hideaway-style restaurant and bar serving creative sushi which overturns traditional Japanese cuisine concepts and makes bold use of new cooking techniques and ingredients. Shari offers around 30 varieties of colorful, original sushi rolls combining fresh, seasonal organic vegetables and fruits with seasonal seafood delivered from Tsukiji Market. The restaurant also serves creative Japanese cuisine which takes inspiration from traditional regional cuisine from areas around the country as well as cooking techniques from around the world, such as the signature mascarpone tofu, strained tamago-dofu egg tofu mixed with mascarpone cheese. You can also enjoy select sake and wine here. Lastly, Shari offers seasonal bento box meals (reservation required).
  • Sakamaru Bettei Yunagi
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Hokkaido Kushiroshi Suehirochou 5-7 Nakataville 3F
    Sakamaru is a popular Hokkaido Japanese izakaya bar chain. The bar's design gives it a hideaway feel, and all of the seating is in private dining areas. The bar uses a convenient iPad-based ordering system. In addition to an extravagant party menu consisting of dishes made with an abundance of seafood, the bar also has a snack menu perfect for an after party-type situation. The bar's signature Sakamaru Oroshi Zantare sauce-covered fried chicken topped with grated daikon has taken the gold prize four years running in the Karaage Grand Prix fried chicken contest sponsored by the Japan Karaage Association.
  • Hanamame
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Hokkaido Obihiroshi Nishichijouminami 10 - 7 Ichinoku Dori First Street
    A Japanese izakaya bar in the Kita no Yatai area on Ikinuki Dori. Harnessing 25 years of chef experience, the owner of Hanamame has created a menu designed never to tire. Hanamae is famous for its miso dishes made by stewing and baking seasonal Tokachi ingredients with Tokachi miso and Kyoto white miso. You can also enjoy beef sinew stewed in miso, a local specialty from the owner's home area of Osaka; homemade shimesaba lightly pickled domestic mackerel; Tokachi beef rib roast steak; and a special dashi yakitamago omelet with which you can choose toppings such as Welsh onion, walleye pollack roe, and cheese.
  • Suntory's Garden Sora
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Hokkaido Sapporoshi Chuou-ku Kitagojounishi 5JR55 Building 8F
    A restaurant located a three minute walk from JR Sapporo Station where you can enjoy creative cuisine made with seasonal seafood, meat, and fresh vegetables in an interior which represents the vast natural beauty and four seasons of Hokkaido. Particularly recommended is the popular three meat cheese jingisukan, a unique take on this popular Hokkaido comfort food mixed with Korean-style cheese dak-galbi. The dish consists of lamb meat marinated in a special jingisukan sauce together with chicken thigh meat and pork loin marinated in a salty-sweet sauce baked together with tasty vegetables. Diners are encouraged to enjoy the dish by covering each bite in the two varieties of accompanying rich cheese sauces.
  • Kinoko Okoku (Otaki Main Shop)
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    4.0
    111 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Hokkaido Dateshi Otaki-ku Sangaitakichou 637-1
    Store and restaurant with local Hokkaido items on National Route 276, Otaki City, Hokkaido. The Kingdom Restaurant offers dishes made from local Otaki district mushrooms such as mushroom miso soup and mushroom tempura. In Kingdom Souvenirs you can find local products like Mentai Name-take (salmon roe with mushrooms) and other mushroom based items that are made only in Hokkaido.

    Great mushroom soup for 108yen. Great to warm up and have a lunch break. It was a stop for the Chuo lake tour.

  • Takaragaike Yubasen
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    4.0
    41 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Iwakuraminamimiyakechou 70-1
    This restaurant offers a French style dining experience for the traditional Kyoto food of yuba and is located around a five-minute walk from subway Karasuma Line Kokusaikaikan Station. The warm wood of the interior gives off a relaxed atmosphere. The yuba (tofu skin) on offer is made at their in-house workshop with domestic soybeans, and is distinctive for its “melt in your mouth” tastiness. The French-style course featuring fresh drawn yuba and other seasonal ingredients is particularly popular. The drawn yuba has an especially simple yet tender taste, served warm with grated ginger and diluted soy sauce.

    Just walking around to find somewhere around the Kokisai Kaplan Station, we found Yubasen by chance. It was rather expensive than we budgeted but the decor and atmosphere were so attractive that we...

  • Mimasuya MONAMI
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kyoto Prefecture Kyoto shi Izumiya cho 160 Ramblas hall 1F
    This restaurant for creative Japanese dining along the Kamogawa River of Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture is known for its delicate Kyoto cuisine with integrated French essence. Kyoto obanzai and Kyoto vegetable dishes, tofu cuisine and wheat starch cuisine are some of the unique Kyoto foods popular with tourists. The rice cooked on an old okudosan kitchen range and the local sake are also popular. Inside there are stylish Western style table seats and counter seats, as well as platform seats overlooking the Kamogawa River in summer.
  • Zenkoji Temple Pilgrim’s Lodging Retreat Konokombo
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Nagano Prefecture Nagano-shi Motomachi 463
    This is a lodging house in the grounds of Zenkoji Temple. You can spend a relaxing moment in this space which is warm and dignified while feeling the breath of the Buddhas. As well as being used for accommodation, this facility also offers meals and shakyo sutra copying workshops (both incur a charge and require prior reservation). Using seasonal ingredients, the shojin vegetarian cuisine is prepared carefully taking plenty of time and using plenty of skill to offer colourful dishes with sophisticated flavours.
  • Araiya Bankokubashi Branch
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kanagawa Pref. Yokohamashi Naka-ku Kaigandori 4-23 Sagami Building 1F
    Located a three minute walk from Bashamichi Station on the Minatomirai Line. A long-standing and local Yokohama gyu-nabe (beef hotpot) restaurant which was established in 1895. The hall from the front entrance to the reception desk is walled in with a Japanese cedar lattice, creating a fairy tale-like atmosphere. Inside the restaurant’s elegant atmosphere, you can enjoy nabe course meals, a la carte items such as kushi-yaki skewers, steaks, gyu-meshi beef rice bowls, and more. The lunch kaiseki course, changed monthly, is limited to 30 customers per day. The restaurant buys its domestic kuroge wagyu beef by the head, enabling it to offer a variety of cuts of meat for enjoying in gyu-nabe, shabu-shabu, gyu-nikomi, and other dishes.
  • araiya Honten
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kanagawa Pref. Yokohamashi Naka-ku Akebonochou 2-17
  • ARAIYA NEST
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kanagawa Pref. Yokohamashi Kanagawa-ku Tsuruyachou 2-19-3
  • Kamakura Rokuyata
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Kanagawa Pref. Kamakurashi Onarimachi 13-38 Ogiwara Building 1F
    This is an original Japanese style restaurant about one minute's walk from Kamakura Station, in Onari-cho, Kamakura City. Their menu centers around the Kamakura Burg hamburger steak, made with Kamakura tofu, chicken, and pork, and cooked in their own original sauce. Their lunch menu includes the Kamakura Burg Plate, or a set matching the hamburger steak with a rice bowl, and in the evening they offer the Kamakura Burg with obanzai Kyoto-style boiled and marinated vegetables, or rice.
  • Tofuya
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Mie Pref. Iseshi Ujiurata 1-4-1
    Tofuya is a prime example of the art of classical Japanese building technique and you can soak in the weight of history emanating from the building. Here they sell silky smooth handmade tofu and natural fresh-water eel. The Tofuya Bento (lunch box) which changes every month is highly recommended. Using seasonal ingredients to present an image of the season it will be more delicious than any other tofu. From the Ise West Interchange on the Ise Expressway it’s about a three-minute drive.
  • Hamayo Main Store Geku-mae Branch
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    4.0
    13 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Mie Pref. Iseshi Honmachi 14-3
    With a long history that spans 250 years having been founded in 1760 during the middle of the Edo period, Hamayo Main Store Geku-mae Branch is a shop where guests can enjoy the most lively fish on Toshijima, shirasu (whitebait). The popular choice is the Nama-Shirasu-Don rice bowl that is flavored with vinegar miso and dashi soy sauce. The Hamayo original of Shirasu steamed dumpling which contains chirimen (dried young sardines) and shrimp and the Kuro-Chirimen Shoyu Ice (ice cream) are also popular. It is located approximately five minutes on foot from JR Iseshi Station.

    外宮表参道真ん前の信号渡って左手。 生しらす丼。秘かなおススメは、お酢(お願いしました)と生姜だけで頂きます。とても美味しかった。

  • Usagiya
    rating-image
    4.5
    5 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Aichi Pref. Handashi Horisakichou 2-1
    This Japanese restaurant located in Horisaki-cho, Handa City in Aichi Prefecture operates out of an old Japanese-style house built in the Meiji period. The interior is an enchanting Japanese space, remnant of the lives of the former residents. Spend some quiet moments among retro-modern furnishings with a glamorous atmosphere, overlooking a Japanese garden. They use locally sourced and seasonal ingredients in their wide variety of dishes. Try their popular “Yuki” course meal with six small dishes and two side-dishes, including rice, miso soup, pickled vegetables, desserts and coffee.

    和風の落ち着いたお店です。懐石で少しずつの量なので食べやすく、美味しく友人を連れて行きましたが喜んでもらえました。

  • Naya Cucina Creativa
    rating-image
    4.0
    8 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Aichi Pref. Chitagunmihamachou Noma Hongou 55
    This restaurant sits in a great location right in front of Ise Bay in Mihama Town, Chita County, Aichi Prefecture. The restaurant has a modern Japanese style with a very relaxed atmosphere. On the west side is a large window from where you can relax and enjoy your meal while looking out over the calm Ise Bay. Their fine, creative Japanese cuisine has an Italian flavor using freshly caught seafood from Mihama, local vegetables and koshihikari (high-quality rice) from Mihama. Popular dishes include their koi-no-mizu set meal complete with eight dishes such as sashimi, appetizers, and their signature kamameshi (rice, meat, and vegetables boiled together in a small pot), as well as their seafood pizza of Mihama.

    釜飯がおいしいと知人に聞いて行きました。海の幸を中心に、いろんな具材の釜飯があります。たこの釜飯を食べましたが、たこがやわらかく、おこげもあって、すごくおいしかったです。駐車場が少ないのか、車の置き場に困りました。

  • Kamakura Shoten
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Wakayama Pref. Nishimurogunshirahamachou 2992
    This long-established store is close to the historical hot spring Saki-no-Yu in Shirahama Town, Nishimuro District, Wakayama. Their “Ideyu hantai Tamago” (hot spring soft-boiled eggs) are famous for being introduced on a TV show about exquisite hot spring gourmet. This soft-boiled egg is cooked in 86°C hot spring water, cooking the yolk hard but making the white runny, opposite to what you might expect. You can take-out or eat inside.
  • Akishino-no-Mori Nazuna
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    4.5
    17 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Nara Pref. Narashi Nakayamachou 1534
    Nazuna is the name of the restaurant within the Akishino-no-Mori complex in Nakayama Town, Nara City. The restaurant serves a variety of course dishes made with seasonal ingredients for both lunch and dinner. Advanced booking is required for lunch and dinner. At lunchtime guests sit and eat at the same time and once finished the next set of diners sit down for their meal.

    11月のコースのお料理を楽しんできました。毎月お料理内容が変わるので楽しみです。 我が家の前に会計を済ませた方は会計と同時に次月の予約をしていました。月に1度の楽しみに良い方法だと感心しました。

  • Kazahana
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Nigata Pref. Nigatashi Chuou-ku Yoneyama 2-7-20
    A Japanese food bar located along Keyaki-dori Avenue a five minute walk from Niigata Station. Dedicated to the concepts of local consumption and farm-fresh, Kazahana serves creative Japanese cuisine made with Niigata ingredients such as pesticide-free Koshihikari rice and vegetables (picked just that morning) provided by contracted farmers, fresh eggs and seafood. The bar’s meat and fish dishes fried on lava stone in the open kitchen visible from the customer tables are particularly popular. Kazahana’s sashimi and abalone steak are also well-reviewed and go well with the bar’s selection of local sakes. Kazahana has a casual, Western-style atmosphere that makes it easy even for customers on their own to come in.
  • Niigata Jiba-mon Koshi Tantan (Niigata Station Front)
    rating-image
    4.0
    14 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Nigata Pref. Nigatashi Chuou-ku Higashiodori 1-1-10 Participating building 5F
    This Japanese-style restaurant is approximately one minute on foot from the JR Niigata Station. Customers can enjoy cuisine which makes use of plenty of the bounty of the sea and mountain vegetables from Niigata. In addition to the expertly purchased fish caught freshly that same morning, the menu also includes locally grown vegetables from contracted farms and brand-name beef, Echigo Mochi-buta pork, Hakkaisan Salmon and Murakami Beef, all from Niigata. The earthenware pot-cooked Niigata Koshihikari rice is also very popular. The restaurant is proud to serve more than 20 types of local sake. The interior of the restaurant is a Japanese space arranged warehouse in a contemporary style, where customers can relax and enjoy their meals.

    職場の飲み会で利用しました。個室が良かったのでこちらに決めました。4000円のコースでしたがお刺身、揚げ物、鍋にうどん、デザートがつきました。量は5人にしては少なめに感じたかな。ANAマイルが貯まる店です。マイラーにはオススメですね。

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