Tokyo’s Must-Try Restaurants and Bars: A Gourmet Guide for Food Lovers

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By Cher

Tokyo, one of the world’s most vibrant cities, continuously adds exciting dining options and bars to its already rich culinary scene. With many new establishments opened it can take time to keep track of all the buzz-worthy spots. Our selection features a range of innovative venues headed by award-winning chefs, Michelin-starred gourmet experiences, unique rooftop bars, and groundbreaking sustainable dining concepts. So here’s a comprehensive guide to some of the most intriguing places to dine and drink in Tokyo.

Maz: Where Peruvian Meets Japanese Cuisine

Chef Virgilio Martínez from the award-winning restaurant Central in Lima, Peru, opened his first overseas restaurant, Maz, in Tokyo in July 2022. Focusing on a fascinating fusion of Peruvian and Japanese culinary traditions, Maz creates an engaging dining experience featuring an altitude-themed menu organized by sea level and ascending courses. Creative Chief Santiago Fernandez masterfully combines exotic herbs with tender Wagyu beef and a vast assortment of tubers, herbs, and grains found throughout Japan’s landscapes.

Nihonbashi Tonkatsu Hajime Hanare: Savour Delectable Pork Delights

With demand skyrocketing at its original location since May 2022, Nihonbashi Tonkatsu Hajime expanded with a second venue known as Hajime Hanare just minutes away. Known for its delicious deep-fried pork cutlets served with omelette on rice, the second location offers premium pork options such as ten-days aged Yongenton pork from Hokkaido and Kobe premium pork raised on bread and mineral water.

Hashiri Shimokitazawa: Michelin-Starred Sushi Meets Artful Kaiseki

Formerly an exclusive member-only sushi spot, Hashiri Shimokitazawa has opened its doors to all, blending delectable sushi with kaiseki-style dishes in thoughtfully curated omakase courses. Chef Tokunori Mekaru skillfully crafts sushi from Toyosu Market, while an impressive selection of around 120 wines is available for purchase.

The Jade Room and Garden Terrace: Luxury Dining with Panoramic Rooftop Views

The Tokyo Edition in Toranomon unveiled its signature restaurant, The Jade Room and Garden Terrace, in October 2022. Helmed by Michelin-starred British chef Tom Aikens, the restaurant features a blend of Japanese and Western flavors, including dishes like slow-cooked pork belly with pickled pineapple. The alfresco Garden Terrace provides captivating views of Tokyo Tower and houses around 200 potted plants in a vibrant vertical garden.

Ash: Pioneering Sustainable Mixology

Determined to promote sustainability, the SG Group established Ash (stylized as ‘æ’), a groundbreaking no-waste cocktail bar that combines minimalist design with eco-conscious practices. From recycled denim interiors to digital menus and loyalty cards, the café showcases unique coffee cocktails and repurposes spent coffee grounds into ingredients or fertilizers.

The Hisaka: A Craft Gin Wonderland

Opened in April 2023 near Takadanobaba Station, The Hisaka offers over 150 types of craft gin while honoring Bar Hisaka’s original designs. Owner Hirokazu Ogura expertly curates a cocktail menu featuring creative concoctions like the Bears Book Gin-based Bear’s Honey.

Bacon: An Art-Inspired Music Venue and Bar

Opened in summer of 2022 by Jae Won Koo in Tokyo’s Koreatown neighborhood of Shin-Okubo, Bacon is a bar and music venue that artfully combines Koo’s familial samgyeopsal restaurant connections with his love for Francis Bacon-inspired designs. Patrons can enjoy conversation-friendly noise levels on weeknights, while DJ events liven up the weekends.

Palle: The Rooftop Bar with a Korean Twist

In August 2022, Hanurlee opened Palle, a rooftop bar infused with Korean aesthetic. Distinguished by its casual atmosphere and affordable drinks starting from ¥700, Palle offers diverse flavors of chamisul, mojito of fruits, beers, and soft drinks alongside an assortment of visually stunning light bites.

No matter your cravings or interests, there’s something for everyone on this list of must-visit restaurants and bars in Tokyo. From exquisite dining experiences to novel drinking establishments, don’t miss out on the exciting culinary adventures that await you in the city.

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