My favorite restaurants after 6 weeks in Japan

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My very personal selection… The restaurants where on top of being welcomed like friends we made our bellies very happy !

We usually think that Japan is super expensive and it’s true… Except for food which is very cheap for the quality and quantity. You can easily find very simple dish like ramens anywhere and for less than a 1000 Yen and very elaborate gastronomic set menu with several services for around 3000 yen.

In the countryside (where I mostly was) it’s not very common to see foreigners wandering around, especially not when those said foreigners are actually europeans. You definitely might also receive prensents if you can tick the boxes and if you tell the chef that you love his food.

But before going to one of those very crowded and typical restaurant like sushis, Izakaya or yakitori, there is one secret you NEED to know. “Omakase” will be the word that will make you a crazy and happy food adventurer in any little restaurant where you can’t find an english menu. With this word you can actually ask the chef to make for you a selection of his best dish for 2000 Y per person (for example) by just saying “Omakase 2000 Y”. But make sure you define clearly with the waiter what you mean by 2000…. 2000 per person or for the table, drinks included or not ?

And if you really don’t know where to start in Japan, here are my 6 favorite places all over Japan (May/june 2016)

Tokyo : Tsukada Noujou

(shinjuku, above the macdonald’s like on the map)

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Izakaya – this one is a chain but it’s worth trying anyway. Nice atmosphere, nice staff. You can defintely try :  Misachi and bonito tataki, my two favorites “tapas”.

here, another blog who loves it.


Kyoto :

No idea what the name would be but it’s impossible to miss it if you follow the map. And a special bonus on this map, my favorite japanese Onsen (and trust me I tried a LOT of them).

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Izakaya, gatsronomic style, no english menu. You can try omakase 3000 Y per person (7 services per person), less wouldn’t be enough.


Matsumoto : Hikage

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Izakaya, very nice atmosphere, traditional, japanese only, no english menu. If you feel like trying Omakase, 3000 to 4000 yen for the table (the tapas are shared) will be enough (drinks not included).


Omachi : Hannanoki

My favorite place on earth ! I can only recommend to visit my japanese family to anyone ready for a bit of wild and green adventures in Japan. You’ll be welcomed like kings, especially if you say that you know “Emma & Max from Belgïe”. This family has been the most welcoming with us, treating us like old friends, waving at the train the day we left and always sharing a bottle of sake with us as soon as the restaurant doors would close… They are the best ! And the view of kizaki lake definitely is worth the train ticket from Matsumoto.

#kizaki #lake on a sunny day… ❤??

Une photo publiée par Eats To West (@eats2west) le

  Omachi_Japan_Best restaurant_Top 10_Bento_Traditional japanese food_Sashimi_Beef_TempuraHannanoki special traditionnal Bento Omashi_Hannanoki_Hananoki_Restaurant_Best restauerant in japan_Top 10_Beef cutlet_Miso soup_pickles Hannanoki beef cutlet (Wagyu tonkatsu… the best ever !)  

Yabu :

No idea what the name could be but there is no way to miss it if you follow the map as it’s the only place, a bit lonely on the side of the road… And you shouldn’t hesitate on the walk in the mountain to the temple, it’s goergeous !  Yabu_Kobe prefecture_Best restaurant in japan_Top 10_Traditionnal japanese bento_Fish_Panko_Miso Traditionnal restaurant with Bento type of meal. Between 1100 and 2500 yen per person. The panko fish is to die for… just saying !   

Okinawa (nakijin) :


Hello mister yakitori ?? Une photo publiée par Eats To West (@eats2west) le

#yakitori party ???

Une photo publiée par Eats To West (@eats2west) le

Yakitori ! Don’t hesitate to try chu-hi ume (Plum alcool with soda) to drink, and to eat : jidori tataki (chicken (raw) sashimi), Hatsu (chicken heart), Sunagimo (chicken gizzard) or the very traditionnal and well known yakitori sauce yakitori