とんかつ やまいち(Tonkatsu Yamaichi)

Special pork filet cutlet(Toku-hire), Y2100.

I love this tonkatsu place! Very small hole-in-the-wall restaurant with only a big round table for 8(need to share with strangers), a small table for 2, and 4 counter seats. The nearest station is Awajicho but it’s not far to walk from Akihabara. I’ve only been here for lunch and it is usually packed especially on Saturday, but there is no crazy lines. The chef fries everything himself behind the counter so during busy lunch hour, you may have to wait for some 15-20 mins. Watching the chef at his work with a very serious expression will make you patient though. The staff(chef’s wife and daughters?) are very friendly, and no matter how busy the chef is, he will always say thank you when you leave. Just love this sincere attitude of Japanese.

Anyway, the most expensive menu is Toku-hire but I think it really is the best. The meat is lean but soft and tender. The set comes with rice(refillable), soup and pickled vegetables.
Special pork loin cutlet(Toku-rousu), Y2000.
Regular pork loin cutlet(Rousu), Y1500.
Toku-rousu is much nicer than Rousu so I think it is worth the Y500 difference, but Toku-rousu is not as good as Toku-hire. There is more fat in Rousu than in Hire and normally I will prefer the former because I like fat….but this place is an exception.
ヒレかつ丼、¥1700。 合びきメンチ、¥1000。
Hire Katsu-don, Y1700. Menchi-katsu, Y1000.
カキフライ、¥1400。 車えびフライ(3本)、¥1900。
Kaki-fry(fried oyster), Y1400. Kuruma-ebi fry(3 pcs), Y1900.
Ebi-Shinjou-age(fried chopped prawn), Y1400.
Scallop croquette(cream inside), Y1400. Skewered pork and vegetable katsu, Y1300.
Rousu Katsu-don, Y1600. Love the katsu-don here.
You can order all the katsu by one piece. I ordered one kaki-fry(Y250), one bite-size Hire-katsu(Y250), one Ebi-shinjou(Y250) and one half-size menchi-katsu(Y300). For 400yen you can make it a set with rice and soup. Good idea if you want to try a bit of everything.

Menu(J) 1, 2.

とんかつ やまいち(Tonkatsu Yamaichi)
Add: 1-8-4, Sudacho, Kanda, Chiyoda-ku
Tel: 03-3253-3335

御茶ノ水 小川軒 (Ochanomizu Ogawaken)

A really nice yoshoku(western food) place in Ochanomizu that I’ve fallen in love with recently. In my first visit when I saw the price on the menu, I thought I would try once, but probably wouldn’t come back because there are so many yoshoku places in this area that are much cheaper. But after the first taste of the curry….I was immediately addicted. I ended up trying almost everything on the menu(Not in one day!) and everything I ordered was good. There is nothing fancy about the food, just basic yoshoku that is perfectly done.
Beef curry(Y1365). The curry that got me hooked. The sauce is so smooth.
Macaroni gratin(Y1575). Winter menu.
Seafood curry(1470). All the lunches come with salad and pickled vegetables.
デミカレー、¥1470。 トリュフショコラケーキ(自家製アイス添え)、¥525。
Demi curry(Y1470). Truffle Chocolat Cake & storemade ice-cream(Y525).
Omelette Rice(Y1575). Hayashi Rice(Y1575).
Raisin-wich. Souvenir that everybody seems to know about.
All the above were eaten in the first floor cafe where the lunch menu is mainly curry. I then ventured down to the basement restaurant which has a different lunch menu with the main item being hamburger. Basement restaurant is smaller and is a bit more expensive than the first floor cafe. All lunches come with a salad, a small soup, rice or bread, and coffee.
デミグラスソース ハンバーグステーキ(150g)、¥1680。
Chopped Beef(100% wagyu) Demi-glace Sauce 150g (Y1680). Super delicious! After the curry, I got hooked to the hamburger too…..damn.
Chinese cabbage and Cauliflower soup. Crabmeat Croquette(Y1995).
和風ソース ハンバーグステーキ、¥1680。
Chopped Beef Soy Sauce 150g(Y1680). The soy sauce is a house blend apparently. I spread a bit of wasabi on the hamburger and add the soy sauce….very nice!
Seasonal Chopped Beef 150g(Y1890). It is just the same Chopped Beef Demi-glace Sauce, plus some sauteed seasonal vegetables on the side.

Basically everything is nice. In particular Beef curry and Chopped beef Demi-glace sauce. The service is very friendly. And they give out 200yen discount coupons so well it is not tooooooo bad. Note that Hayashi rice(very good too) is available in both 1st floor and basement and the staff said it is exactly the same thing.

First floor menu here. Basement menu can be found in the homepage.

御茶ノ水小川軒 (Ochanomizu Ogawaken )
Add: 1-9-3 Yushima, Bunkyo-ku
Tel: 03-5802-5420

夢茶房 (Yumesabou)

A very local udon shop near Kikukawa station(Toei Shinjuku line). I eat here often because, 1) it is delicious, 2) it is cheap to start off with and you get a 50yen discount coupon everytime, 3) it opens everyday and all day, 4) even when it is crowded, they won’t ask you to share tables with strangers, 5) I live (sort of) nearby. ^^;;; There are many good udon shops in central Tokyo so I guess there is no need to come all the way here just for the udon(there is nothing to see in Kikukawa), but anyway….
Udon with chicken dipping soup. Tori no Kara-age(fried chicken). Both are good.

For udon with dipping soup(which this place has a large variety), you can choose the udon from cold, atsumori(hot), or kama-age(see below).
Motsu-nikomi(giblet stew) udon. Fried aubergine.
力うどん、¥800。 もつ汁うどん(大)、あつもり、¥780。
Chikara udon(udon with mochi).
Motsu-jiru Udon(udon with giblet dipping soup).
Lunch set with motsu-nikomi, zaru-udon, and rice cooked with vegetables. Curry udon.
天丼、¥1000。 カレーとり汁うどん(並)、¥680。
Tendon(not so recommended). Udon with curry chicken dipping soup.
Kamojiru(duck soup) udon (kama-age). Simmered squid and satoimo.
Chicken wing stuffed with minced pork. Very good!
Udon with sesame and spring onion. Udon with aubergine dipping soup.
天ざるそば、¥1200。 とろろ昆布うどん、¥650。
Tenzaru soba(tempura is so-so). Tororo-Kombu(shredded kombu in vinegar) udon.
Motsu-nikomi. Tastes better when you order it on its own.
Yumesabou udon.
Udon with prawn dipping soup. Gyoza(don’t recommend this).
焼肉丼、¥750。 肉じゃが、¥490。
Yakiniku don(the beef a bit tough). Nikujaga(portion quite small).
Udon with salt and chicken dipping soup. I like this one the most out of all the udon with dipping soup. Buta no kakuni(the pork is not simmered enough and the portion is small for the price).
Lunch set with shumai and kitsune(aburaage) udon.
Kimchi udon, and I asked for natto and raw egg topping. I think this combination would be better for cold udon without soup. ^^;;;

Menu(J): 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

夢茶房 (Yumesabou)
Add: 2-6-16, Kikukawa, Sumida-ku
Tel: 03-3846-8196

九段 斑鳩(Kudan Ikaruga)

Tokusei ramen(shoyu base), Y880.
Tokusei noukou wafuu tonkotsu(pork bone broth).
(June 6, 2009)
Chashu(roasted pork) Garlic Abura-soba, Y1120.
061224 003061224 002
(Dec 27, 2006)
Hongatsuo(some fancy version of dried bonito?) soup based ramen. Usually bonito soup never works for me but I really like this one. Thought it would have been nicer if the soup were piping hot, but after reading other people’s reviews, seems like the lukewarm temperature is deliberate. Noodles are perfectly cooked, the pork and the eggs are both soft and tasty. No wonder there is always a long queue. I went twice before but gave up because of the queue. This time I went early, around 11:30am, and I got in pretty quick. I sat at the counter and the staff in front of me(not the guy in pic) has his head quite interestingly shaved…seems like he is the owner. He is all smiley and softly singing(literally) irashaimase the entire time.
九段 斑鳩(Kudan Ikaruga)

I-Kousya (アイコウシャ)

Blue cheese burger with fried onion(R), Y1522.

Very nice American eatery near Tokyo Dome. Both the burgers and the sandwiches are good but I think the burgers are better in terms of taste and value. I like the Blue cheese burger and the Mushroom Burger the most – they are also the most expensive.Try not to go at peak hours cos it is just the chef in the kitchen and the quality suffers when the restaurant is packed, especially on weekend lunchtime.

Green salad, Y367. Onion rings(half), Y210.
Potato Wedges, Y367. Grilled Marinated Mushroom Burger with Swiss Cheese(R), Y1417.
Chili Burger(L), Y1260. Salsa Burger(L), Y1207.
BBQ Burger(L), Y1207.
Bacon burger(R), Y997. You can tell the burger is quite burnt. I had this at peak lunch hour on a Saturday.
Avocado Burger(L), Y1207. Cheese Burger(L), Y1207.
American Club House(Grilled chicken, ham, bacon, lettuce, tomato, Tartar sauce), Y1522. Huge portion.
Reuben(Pastrami, Swiss cheese, Sauerkraut, mustard, Tartar sauce), Y1365. A bit too sour for me.
Grilled Shrimp and Avocado, Y1207. Pastrami, Y1102.
The amount of main ingredients for the sandwiches isn’t always so generous(just filled up with lettuce) and sometimes there is too much sauce. But well I still like them.
Corned Beef, Y945. Honey Sesame Chicken, Y1050.
Colesaw, Y252. Fried Cajun Chicken, Y1050.
Hot Dog, Y525. Chili and Potato Wedges, Y682.

Menu: 1, 2.

I-Kousya (アイコウシャ)
Add: 1-4-8 Misakicho, Chiyoda-Ku
Tel: 03-3291-4102

Topca (トプカ)


Murugi(chicken) curry – Indian style. Comes with a free boiled egg if you order the “Today’s recommended curry”.

A really nice curry shop about 10 mins walk from Akihabara(nearest subway station is Awajicho). There are two types of curry – European and Indian – each with a variety of menu options. In general Indian curries are much spicier and in my opinion much nicer than the European ones. Though I have this thing about curry with deep-fried things as toppings…which they have many options to offer from the European curry menu so I ended up trying them all. The shop is opened everyday of the week; I often go on Sunday when the Japanese owner chef is in the kitchen, while in other days an Indian(?) chef will be in charge. Not every item on the menu is available on Sunday though. There is a branch in Ikebukuro which I had visited a long time ago(see tag).
Menchi curry – European. Cabbage salad.
マトンカリー、¥900。 欧風ポーク野菜カリー、¥950。
Mutton curry – Indian. I couldn’t eat the RAW onion on the rice…
Pork and vegetable curry – European.
Katsu(fried pork) curry – European.
Keema curry – Indian.
Hayashi rice. Croquette(potato) curry – European.
白身魚のカリー、¥1000。 牛すじ野菜カリー、¥950。
Fish curry – Indian. Hmm don’t like the fish so much.
Beef tendon and vegetable curry – European.
Chicken katsu curry – European. Pork curry – Indian.
スパイシーバターチキン、¥900。 ザ・ビーフ、¥1300。
Spicy butter chicken. Beef curry. These two are new menu and are both very good.

Menu(J) here.

Topca (トプカ)
Add: 1-11 Sudacho, Kanda, Chiyoda-ku
Tel: 03-3255-0707

かつ吉 水道橋店 (Katsu Kichi Suidoubashi)

A favourite lunch spot near Tokyo Dome. Lunch includes salad, plain rice or rice with green shiso(aojiso), miso soup – all refillable. Other than the yuzu soy sauce dressing on the table, you can ask for other flavours: 1) sesame, 2) onion, 3) umejiso(sour plum shiso) and mayonnaise. Dressing menu here.
焼肉丼、¥1100。 盛り合わせフライ定食(串・海老かつ)、¥1500。
Yakiniku rice bowl. Pork is stir-fried with onion.
Assorted fry: Kushi-katsu(kushi means skewer) with pumpkin, shishitou pepper, onion and pork. and Ebi-katsu(prawn chopped and deep-fried).
Chicken and leek rice bowl. Grilled chicken with ginger soy sauce.
Grilled pork loin with ginger soy sauce. Fried chicken with grated raddish and ponzu.
Yanagigawa style katsu-don. Fried pork with tororo(grated mountain yam) in soup.
Ganso katsu-don. Fried pork with egg.
海の幸フライ定食(海老かつ、白身魚フライ)、¥1300。 とんかつ ロース、¥2100。
Assorted fry: Ebi-katsu and fried fish.
Tonkatsu(2100yen) from the regular menu. Hmm I think the lunch menu has better value for money. (Lunch menu for each month can be found in this page.)

This is a sister restaurant of Bodaiju(entry here) and is in the same location. The menu is quite similar but I really like the non-deep-fried menu in Katsu Kichi. At lunch time, Katsu Kichi is non-smoking which is great, despite the fact that there is this old furniture smell, probably from the wooden decor, that always takes a few mins getting used to. Service is good in both places.

かつ吉 水道橋店 (Katsu Kichi Suidoubashi)
Add: B1, 1-4-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku
Tel: 03-3812-6268