From the 7/11 in Narita Airport onwards, our time in Japan is largely centered around what we're munching on. Here are just a few of the things I always look forward to getting my hands on:

Egg sando

Egg sandwich from efish, Kyoto dining in Japan

Across Japan the egg sandwich is elevated to a fine art form, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the 7/11 standard. Or having more than one of those every day. Not being able to read the nutritional information is a blessing. But one of the finest examples can be found at efish in Kyoto. The setting is great, and you can enjoy while overlooking the river.


Breakfast tofu

Tofu for breakfast dining in Japan

My favourite breakfast to have in Japan isn't too fancy, but it's something I have trouble replicating at home. I can buy all of the things, but I can’t make it taste right. There’s not much to it- a block of silken tofu, soy sauce, bonito flakes, a little spring onion, and it's perfect. I buy three blocks of tofu for around a dollar.


Mochi

Mochi dining in Japan

This is the most special piece of mochi I've eaten- fresh from being made and then grilled by the lovely team at Sou Sou in Kyoto. Making mochi is a Japanese New Year tradition, and a surprisingly violent process. It's also a killer- mochi infamously chokes people to death every holiday season. Proceed with caution!

I love the texture of mochi, and will also always stop for Mitarashi Dango- a surprisingly filling skewer of sweet miso-dipped rice dumplings.

Mitarashi Dango Nakano Broadway dining in Japan

Ice-cream mochi is also a winner with me, specifically 7/11 vanilla ice cream mochi. I’ve tried other flavours but the vanilla wins out. The mochi coating is delicious chilled, and becomes soft and chewy as you eat it.


Ramen

Ramen Nezu dining in Japan

If he had the option, Chris would eat ramen every night. My noodle preference is 'not all the time, but I'd like it to be great when it happens'. Luckily, this spot in Nezu serves up exemplary bowls, and it's something I can always look forward to.

When I need some comforting after a long night of karaoke, this chicken ramen in Kyoto has been the answer.

Chicken ramen Kyoto dining in Japan


Gyoza

It's easier for me to play favourites with gyoza, because as far as I'm concerned, there's a clear winner. Gyoza Chao Chao is noisy, messy, busy and turns out totally divine dumplings. I mean, just check out this menu.

These pork gyoza are the house standard, and turned out perfectly every time.

Gyoza Chao Chao Kyoto dining in Japan

And yes, this is a gyoza INSIDE a chicken wing. True innovation.

Gyoza Chao Chao Chicken Wing Kyoto dining in Japan

It's important to note that this list is by no means exhaustive, and I will embrace almost all Japanese food equally.