In Tokyo, you can skip from sushi, to fine French-inspired dining, to the most modern of modern cuisine.Before you blow some cash, know that the best restaurants in Tokyo aren't necessarily the most expensive. That game-changing bowl of ramen shouldn't run you more than $10. But if you're looking to enjoy a meal in super-luxe style or a perfectly refined setting, Tokyo is the place to do it.
There are a bunch of places that you'll be told are impossible to book for. They probably are! If you have the inclination you can find a concierge service and give it a bash. But, we recommend not getting too hung up on these unicorns. There are lots of places where it's not too tricky to book, and where you'll enjoy an incredible evening (or lunch time!)
This new restaurant isn't so much Nordic-influenced, as directly transplanted. Chef Thomas Frebel headed up the research and development team at noma for almost 10 years. “There is so much of Noma in me — and a certain amount of me in noma, too,” he says. The two restaurants sport very different menus but share an underlying philosophy. Frebel will source the majority of his ingredients from Japan.
Go if: you like your seaweed foraged, or if you've given up hope of getting to noma.
Chef Shinobu Namae has created a lovely experience that's buried in the heart of Omotesando. This is a sedate dining experience, with the emphasis on seasonal flavours, inventively presented. Booking online is straightforward, making this an especially good choice if you don't speak any Japanese.
Go if: you like your fancy food served with a fun touch of quirk.
No longer in Jimbocho, you'll now find Den in upmarket Jingumae. This restaurant is legendary Chef Zaiyu Hasegawa's tongue-in-cheek take on traditional kaiseki. Bookings are taken two months from the reservation date, and don't try your concierge here, bookings are only taken directly (English is no problem).
Go if: the very idea of 'Dentucky' Fried Chicken has your mouth watering.
No matter when you're in Tokyo, there will be something wonderful to see at the Mori Art Museum, and now you can extend your visit into an evening meal. While cafe The Sun is open during the day, restaurant, The Moon, comes out to play at night. We'd try and time our visit for early evening to enjoy sunset from the 52nd floor.
Go if: you're not afraid of heights.
A French seafood specialist, Minato's Abysse is a good choice if you're dining with pescatarians. The menu uses seafood only to serve up umami-rich flavours. Chef and owner Kotaro Meguro has combined his French training with the local love of seafood to create something quite novel.
Go if: you're keen on seafood but you've had enough sushi (if that's possible).