Akihabara, Ueno, Asakusa
Cafes, bars and casual dining
Boo - Cafe: Akihabara
[Open 11:30am-11pm (LO). Closed Wednesdays.]
One of the rare non-chain restaurants in Akihabara, this charming cafe serves an eclectic evening menu of Italian-inspired dishes at very reasonable prices. At lunchtime it's more of a standard cafe menu (served until 1:40pm), and in the afternoons...
Asan Cafe - Cafe: Akihabara
[Open 11am-6:45pm (LO). Closed Wednesdays.]
Part of the Aki-Oka complex of artisan shops and studios, this offbeat cafe features hammocks to swing in and tablet computers to fool around on while you enjoy a coffee; unfortunately they close rather early.
Kuramoto Stand - Bar: Akihabara
[Open 11am-8pm daily.]
A small but stylish bar run by Kikusui Brewery and attached to the Chabara antenna shop, Kuramoto offers sake tasting sets as well as sausages, pancakes and other foods made with sake lees.
Tokyo Curry-ya Meitenkai - Curry: Akihabara
[Open 10am-9pm daily.]
This tiny counter shop inside Akihabara Atre has assembled five famous Japanese curry shops from this curry-strong neighborhood - mini-branches of Kyoeido, Ethiopia, Delhi, Topca and Hongo Petit Feu. For Y2500 you can try a sampling of curries from...
Cafe Obscura - Coffee shop: Akihabara
[Open 11am-9pm (Sun -8pm) daily.]
Sangenjaya-based coffee purveyor Obscura sell around ten varieties of fresh-roasted coffee beans - both single-origin and custom blends - starting at Y600/100g. Located inside an old converted train station, the tiny shop offers a handful of stools...
Hitachino Brewing Lab - Beer bar: Akihabara
[Open 11am-10:30pm (LO; Sun -8:30pm) daily.]
Occupying one of the most stylish settings for a taproom in Tokyo, this brewing laboratory from the ever-popular Hitachino Nest beer offers seven beers on tap, including some experimental lab-only brews that they're trying out. The brewery's hoppy...
Afternoon Tea - Cafe: Ueno
[Open 10am-9pm daily.]
Light, casual meals are served all day starting from 10am (an hour earlier than most other restaurants in the neighborhood). One of our favorites is the vegetable and chicken platter - an assortment of grilled and steamed seasonal vegetables served...
Vinuls - Spanish: Ueno
[Open 11am-4:30am daily.]
Spanish food and reasonably priced French and Spanish wines, with convenient late-night hours. Budget around Y3000 for food and drink at dinnertime. (From the same management as the Aux Amis des Vins chain of French wine bars.)
Konaya - Udon: Ueno
[Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.]
Oddly compelling udon noodles in curry-flavored broth, served with shrimp tempura, bananas or mochi (rice cakes).
Wired Cafe Atre Ueno - Cafe: Ueno
[Open 8am-11pm daily.]
Coffee, wireless internet access and good food from the popular Wired Cafe chain. Located in a basement corridor next to Ueno station's Retro Gate, this oddly laid-out shop features a cozy balcony area.
Tamaya - Bar: Okachimachi
[Open 11:30am-2, 5-11pm. Closed Sundays.]
Tamaya has all the makings of a great neighborhood wine bar: a lively but relaxed atmosphere, a well-chosen selection of reasonably priced wines; and tasty, tapas-sized dishes. The only problem is getting in. The bar, which can accommodate a mere...
23 Banchi Cafe - Brewpub: Asakusa
[Open 11:30am-11pm daily.]
This casual cafe is run by Asahi Beer, on the grounds of their Philippe Starck-designed headquarters. Drinks include coffees, wine, and various Asahi and Asahi-imported beers, including three microbrews from the on-premises Sumidagawa Brewery. ...
Kamiya Bar - Bar: Asakusa
[Open 11:30am-10pm. Closed Tuesdays.]
Founded in 1880, this historic bar is best known as the originator of Denki Bran ("electric brandy"), a strangely compelling, rather sweet brandy-like liquor that's used in a variety of cocktails served here. Cheap prices and communal tables...
Bar Six - Bar: Asakusa
[Open 6pm-2am. Closed Mondays.]
Located at the top of the very cultural Amuse Museum, Bar Six offers a nice evening view of the illuminated pagoda and temple buildings of nearby Sensoji Temple. Weather permitting, the outdoor terrace seats offer the best view. Drinks include...
Asakusa Gyukatsu - Gyukatsu: Asakusa
[Open 11am-10:30pm (LO; Sat -9:30, Sun -8:30) daily.]
This tiny, nine-seat counter shop just may serve the best deep-fried beef cutlet in Tokyo. The meat is beautifully marbled, encased in a thin, softly crunchy coating and quite tasty with just a bit of grated rock salt. Do try the onion sauce...
Ef Cafe - Cafe: Asakusa
[Open 11am-11pm (LO). Closed Tuesdays.]
Ef Cafe isn't a cat cafe, it's simply a cafe with a resident cat which also happens to exhibit cat-centered artwork on the walls, serve drinks in cat-themed glassware, and sell a small, tasteful collection of feline-focused knick-knacks. During the...
Tiger Gyoza Hall - Gyoza: Asakusa
[Open 11:30am-10:30pm (LO) daily.]
Tiger's menu is devoted to gyoza dumplings, both fried and boiled. The signature dish is their extra-large Banana Gyoza, so named because of their elongated shape - these come with a voluminous pork filling wrapped in a thick, chewy, lightly...