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Restaurants in Tokyo

To the surprise of many visitors, dining out in Tokyo doesn't cost the earth. With an estimated 60,000 restaurants in Tokyo, there is something for every tastebud and budget, from gastronomic delights (Tokyo has more Michelin stars than anywhere else on the planet) to fresh and delicious sushi, served from a stall at the city's famous Ameyoko Market.

Lunch is the perfect time to try new restaurants, particularly in areas like Ginza, Omotesando and Harajuku, as menu prices are often set cheaper than their night-time equivalent. Don't miss the 'bento boxes': great-value lunch boxes filled with a selection of rice, shellfish, and vegetables.

Tokyo is a city which loves food, boasting some of the best restaurants and food markets in the world. However, like its nightlife, Tokyo's restaurants are often tucked away down alleys, on the top of high rises or down in basements. Don't let this put you off as the interiors of many of these restaurants are beautiful. Service is impeccable and every diner is made to feel special.

The Tokyo restaurants below have been grouped into three pricing categories:
Expensive (over ¥10,000)
Moderate (¥5,000 to ¥10,000)
Cheap (up to ¥5,000)

These prices are for a three-course meal for one, including half a bottle of house wine or equivalent, tax and service. An 8% consumer tax is added to restaurant bills and luxury restaurants may also add a 10-15% service charge. Tipping is not customary and might offend.

Expensive

Daigo

Cuisine: Japanese

The rich and discerning still adore this top-end restaurant, a Tokyo institution since 1950, blessed with two Michelin stars, where the chef follows the strict vegetarian Buddhist rules of shojinryori (Buddhist vegetarian cuisine). Diners relax in one of the restaurant's private tatami rooms, each elegantly designed in traditional Japanese style.

Address: Minato-ku, 2-3-1 Atago, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 3431 0811
Website: http://www.atago-daigo.jp

L'Effervescence

Cuisine: French, Japanese

A key part in Japan's Michelin star boom, L'Effervescence represents Tokyo fine dining at its best. Chef Shinobu Namae made his name at Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck restaurant in the UK, but is influenced by French and Japanese dishes. Chawanmushi (Japanese egg custard) with abalone or wild boar with yuzu are the style of food to expect.

Address: Minato-ku, 2-26-4 Nishiazabu, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 5766 9500
Website: http://www.leffervescence.jp/en

Takazawa

Cuisine: French, Japanese

With just 10 seats, this tiny restaurant is one of the hottest places to eat in town. Chef Yoshiaki Takazawa cooks up stunning traditional Japanese dishes infused with French flavours, making this a culinary experience not to be missed. Seafood is the main draw with the menu changing depending on seasonal ingredients.

Address: Minato-ku, Floor 2, Sanyo Akasaka Bldg, 3-5-2, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 3305 5052
Website: http://www.takazawa-y.co.jp

Moderate

Bamboo Grassy

Cuisine: Japanese

Teppanyaki means stir-fried meat and vegetables cooked on a large grill, and this is one of the best restaurants in Tokyo to give it a try. Grab a front-row seat to watch the chefs at work - their dexterity never fails to amaze. Okonomiyaki (Japanese savoury pancake) and yakisoba (stir-fried noodles with meat and vegetables) are also available.

Address: , 3-9-29 Biahausu Ebisu, Shibuya-ku,
Telephone: +81 3 5739 0527
Website: http://www.roundtable-tky.com/ebisu/

Gogyo

Cuisine: Japanese

For a great variety of traditional Japanese food, a splash of chic with a down-to-earth vibe and a great plate of ramen, head to Gogyo. Squeeze along the benches and watch the flames of the kitchen from afar while tasting a range of shochu (a clear spirit) and yakibuta (barbecued pork). Let the lantern hanging outside the door guide you in.

Address: , 1-4-36 Nishiazabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 5775 5566
Website: http://ramendining-gogyo.com

Sushiyori Inose

Cuisine: Japanese

Tokyo has thousands of excellent sushi restaurants to choose from, but this spot has gained an impressive reputation thanks to its winning hospitality. It's refreshingly unpretentious, utterly unique and won’t leave you penniless either. There is no menu though; the chef makes what he pleases and you eat as many plates as you like.

Address: Shinagawa, 2-20-2 Higashigotanda, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 3443 1719

Cheap

Afuri

Cuisine: Japanese

Set alongside the Shibuya River, Afuri is famous for its signature yuzu-infused ramen (which adds a lightness to the broth). Queues often form outside, but service is fast. Select your order from the vending machine at the entrance (there's English labelling too) and then collect your dish. 

Address: Shibuya-ku, 1-1-7 Ebisu, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 5795 0750
Website: http://www.afuri.com

Chinya

Cuisine: Japanese

This popular Tokyo restaurant has been running since 1880, and there is a touch of old Japan from the moment you relinquish your shoes at the door. After being led to your table by the kimono-clad waitress, choose from shabu-shabu (thin slices of beef and pork served raw for you to cook in a boiling broth) and sukiyaki (thin slices of beef, vegetables, tofu and noodles cooked in warishita, a special stock of soy sauce, sweet sake and sugar).

Address: Taito-ku, 1-3-4 Asakusa, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 3841 0010
Website: http://www.chinya.co.jp

The Pink Cow

Cuisine: Western

The Pink Cow is a firm favourite among ex-pats and locals into western food and drink. The atmosphere is colourful and relaxed, with funky furnishings and a maze of rooms hung with the work of local artists. The list of Californian wines is excellent, and the simple, home-style cooking (from burritos and bagels to fudge brownies) makes for an affordable, yet comforting meal.

Address: Minato-ku, 5-5-1 Roppongi, Tokyo,
Telephone: +81 3 6434 5773
Website: http://www.thepinkcow.com

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Claska Hotel

Modern minimalist design and classic Japanese aesthetics brush shoulders in this hip hotel, just outside of the city centre. There’s the chance to choose between a western–style room or traditional tatami space. Each option comes with plenty of home comforts, including beautiful toiletries and access to a huge CD and DVD collection. There’s even an in–house gallery, plus a French/Japanese fusion restaurant.

Hoshinoya Tokyo

Opened in the summer of 2016, Hoshinoya is a unique urban offering for Tokyo, a hotel with a contemporary take on Japan’s legendary omotenashi hospitality, set right at the heart of the city's Otemachi district. Leave your shoes at the door and unwind into spacious quarters, designed with a tasteful nod to the traditional Japenese aesthetic. The 19-floor hotel with stylish lattice exterior forms a bijou enclave in this bustling business district, just a 10 minute walk from Tokyo Station. You won't want to leave your ochanoma lounge area, allocated exclusively to guests staying on each floor and decked in traditional tatami mats, it has a library, sofas and kitchen space. But if you do the rooftop onsen spa is a truly unique Tokyo experience. The hot spring waters are the perfect cure for urban fatigue and will help you revitalise your body and mind, all the while staring up at the open Tokyo skies above.

Hotel Gracery Shinjuku

Set only a few minutes' walk from Shinjuku train station and in easy walking distance of a dizzying array of shops and restaurants, Gracery Shinjuku is something of a landmark - it's set in a modern high rise building that's 30 stories high, and there's a giant replica godzilla head peering out the side. If you're willing to pay extra, you can stay in a godzilla-themed room too. Though the rooms are compact, the bathrooms are larger than the norm and the higher rooms have scenic city views; there's also a convenient Italian restaurant on-site and a cinema on the ground floor.

Park Hyatt Tokyo

The Park Hyatt Tokyo's role as muse and backdrop to Coppola's Lost in Translation pushed it onto the world stage in 2003. Towering over fashionable Shinjuku, guests enter on the 41st floor and gaze across the neon-lit Tokyo sky. Art blends with sleek architecture and spacious rooms, and even the spa combines tradition and modernisation with impressive success. Plus, there's something to be said for working out in the gym that tormented Bill Murray.

Hotel Asia Center of Japan

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Imperial Hotel

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