Tonkatsu, other meat

Tonkatsu

!Narikura (Takadanobaba - Tonkatsu). 6380-3823
Four or five different heirloom breeds of pork are generally on offer at this popular tonkatsu specialist, with dinnertime teishoku set meals starting at around Y1400-2000 depending on the type of pork. The teishoku comes with a deep, rich tonjiru soup (Y100 if you want a refill), some nice potato salad and good pickles. The pork is covered in a light-colored coating that's flakier than average, with a good balance of meat to fat. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Takadanobaba 1-32-11, Ozawa Bldg B1F. Open 11am-2, 5:30-9pm (LO). Closed Thursdays.
Katsukura (Shinjuku - Tonkatsu). 5361-1878
Besides the usual tonkatsu they offer variations like deep-fried shrimp and scallops, yuba (tofu skin) croquettes, and nice side dishes like chawanmushi, tofu salad and kakuni stewed pork. The original shop is in Kyoto.
no smokingSunmapShibuya-ku, Sendagaya 5-24-2, Times Square 14F. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
Maisen (Omotesando - Tonkatsu). 3470-0071
Tokyo's second-most-famous tonkatsu restaurant, located in an unusually decorated former bathhouse. In addition to pork cutlets there's also a full menu of set meals and seasonal a la carte items.
SunmapShibuya-ku, Jingumae 4-8-5. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
!Butagumi (Nishi-Azabu - Tonkatsu). 5466-6775
Tonkatsu doesn't get much better than this. Butagumi showcases premium pork brands - Spanish Iberico, Berkshire, Tokyo X, Agoo from Okinawa and many others, with several choices on any given day. If you have trouble deciding, they offer specials with five small pieces of different pork varieties that you can compare (Y2800 and/or Y3800, depending on the day). [Show more]
SunmapMinato-ku, Nishi-Azabu 2-24-9. Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO). Closed Mondays.
Tonki (honten) (Meguro - Tonkatsu). 3491-9928
Japan's most famous tonkatsu restaurant has been called an institution, and indeed the atmosphere is institutional and utterly charmless, with a vast assembly-line kitchen surrounded by one large counter. The food is plain and simple -- plump, lean pork cutlets without an excess of flavor, served with a bland tonjiru (pork soup), rice and pickles for Y1,650. They must be doing something right, though, because there are usually lines waiting to get in.
SunmapMeguro-ku, Shimo-Meguro 1-1-2. Open 4-10:45pm. Closed Tuesdays, some Mon.
Hirata Bokujo (Roppongi - Tonkatsu). 5647-8329
The gourmet tonkatsu here is made from tasty premium hybrid pork from a small farm in Yamagata. Katsu sets are priced Y1400-2500, and full-course pork shabu-shabu dinners are Y4500-7500. Lunch starts at Y1000.
SunmapMinato-ku, Akasaka 9-7-3, Tokyo Midtown Midtown West EB108. Open 11am-9pm daily.
!Butagumi Shokudo (Roppongi Hills - Tonkatsu). 3408-6751
Tonkatsu at this branch of the legendary Nishi-Azabu Butagumi is made from premium grades of pork and heirloom breeds. The spacious counter surrounds an open kitchen area where you can watch your tonkatsu being prepared. Regular tonkatsu starts at around Y1000, while more exotic meats like Super Golden Pork range from Y2500-3000 for a set meal. Lunch is served until 4:30pm.
SunmapMinato-ku, Roppongi 6-2-31, Roppongi Hills North Tower B1F. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
Katsuzen (Ginza - Tonkatsu). 3289-8988
Gourmet tonkatsu-based cuisine is the unusual concept at "Tonkatsu Kappo Katsuzen." Lunch from Y2800, dinner from Y8500.
SunmapChuo-ku, Ginza 6-8-7, Kojun Bldg 4F. Open 11:30am-2, 5-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Yabaton (Yaesu - Tonkatsu). 3212-8810
One of Nagoya's most famous tonkatsu shops, Yabaton is known for their tasty miso-slathered cutlets and their cute pig-sumo wrestler mascot. The teppan tonkatsu (Y1365) is their best-selling dish - a hefty portion of fatty pork cutlet covered in a sweetish miso sauce, laid over a bed of cabbage and served on a metal platter that steams and sizzles at it arrives in front of you. The large and very meaty pork soup is highly recommended as a side dish. [Show more]
no smokingSunmapChiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 1-9-1, Tokyo Gran Roof B1F. Open 10am-10pm (LO) daily.
Hirata Bokujo (Nihonbashi - Tonkatsu). 6214-3129
The gourmet tonkatsu here is made from tasty premium hybrid pork from a small farm in Yamagata. Katsu sets are priced Y1400-2500, and full-course pork shabu-shabu dinners are Y4500-7500. Lunch starts at Y1000.
SunmapChuo-ku, Nihonbashi 1-4-1, Coredo Nihonbashi 4F. Open 11am-2:30, 5-10pm (LO) daily.
!Takeda (Yotsuya - Tonkatsu). 3357-6004
This lively neighborhood shop does a brisk business both day and night, so it might be a good idea to avoid peak lunch and dinner hours if you don't want to wait. In addition to doing excellent tonkatsu, in both regular and premium grades, the kitchen also turns out deep-fried prawns, oysters, fish and chicken. One of the most popular items is a combo platter of menchi-katsu (ground-pork patties) and croquettes. [Show more]
mapShinjuku-ku, Yotsuya 1-4-2. Open 11am-3, 5-9pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
!Agezuki (Kagurazaka - Tonkatsu). 6265-0029
Located in an attractively furnished Kagurazaka basement, walls decorated with colorful sake and shochu bottles, Agezuki feels more like an upscale izakaya than a tonkatsu shop. And indeed they offer a well-curated list of more than a dozen craft sakes, in either standard 1-go flasks or 65ml tasting sizes, along with sake-appropriate snacks. Several types of shochu, a few inexpensive wines and the usual beer round out the drinks options. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Kagurazaka 3-2, Yamanouchi Bldg B1F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 6-10pm (LO). Closed Tues, 3rd Wed.
Bodaiju (Suidobashi - Tonkatsu). 3818-1020
OK tonkatsu, fried shrimp, and "Western-style" beef dishes in an eccentric, oddly appealing junk-shop atmosphere.
SunmapBunkyo-ku, Hongo 1-14-3. Open 11:30am-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Manpei (Awajicho - Tonkatsu). 3251-4996
Highly rated by Tokyo's tonkatsu cognoscenti, this pork cutlet specialist serves a cutlet with a thin but pleasantly crunchy coating and juicy meat on the inside. The accompanying tofu soup is above average; other options include menchi katsu, pork saute and oysters (in winter). [Show more]
mapChiyoda-ku, Kanda Sudacho 1-11. Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-7pm. Closed Sundays and holidays.
Marugo (Akihabara - Tonkatsu). 3255-6595
Great tonkatsu served in a nice old traditional house smack in the middle of Akihabara's "Electric Town." (near the Livina lamp megastore.)
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Soto-Kanda 1-8-14. Open 11:30am-3, 5-8:25pm (LO). Closed Thurs., 3rd Wed.
Katsukura (Kichijoji - Tonkatsu). 0422-23-8651
One of the best of the tonkatsu chains, Kyoto-based Katsukura offers nice side dishes like yuba (tofu-skin) croquettes and excellent Kyoto-style pickles. And they're open all afternoon if you need a late lunch.
SunmapMusashino-shi, Kichijoji Honcho 2-3-1, Tokyu Dept. Store 9F. Open 11am-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Hirata Bokujo (Futago-tamagawa - Tonkatsu). 3700-1729
The gourmet tonkatsu here is made from tasty premium hybrid pork from a small farm in Yamagata. Katsu sets are priced Y1400-2500, and full-course pork shabu-shabu dinners are Y4500-5500.
SunmapSetagaya-ku, Tamagawa 3-17-1, Takashimaya Honkan 6F. Open 11am-9pm (LO) daily.
Katsusen (Yokohama Minato-mirai - Tonkatsu). 045-664-1200
The tonkatsu here features the shop's own special brand of Touzan pork, a premium breed with a well-balanced flavor. Dinnertime teishoku meals start at around Y1300. Lunch is served until 5pm.
SunmapSakuragicho 1-1-7, Colette-Mare 6F. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.

Other pork specialties

Riki (Ikebukuro - Yakiton). 5957-5529
Located just a minute or two from Ikebukuro station, this bustling izakaya is an easy stop for a quick bite and a drink on the way home, and the crowded ground-floor counter is full of solo diners as well as groups. Unlike most yakiton shops, they also have a take-out window in front where you can pick up skewers of grilled pork to go. [Show more]
SunmapToshima-ku, Nishi-Ikebukuro 1-15-3. Open 3-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!!Teruteru (Takadanobaba - Yakiton). 6908-8351
The first-rate grilled pork at Teruteru is matched by a serious selection of craft sake, including many seasonal choices. Pork skewers start at just Y100, with more than a dozen different organ meats. The tsukune (minced-pork patty) is outstanding, a perfect balance of meaty flavors with a good amount of fat, and the shiro (intestines) and harami (tender diaphram meat) are also highly recommended. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Takadanobaba 3-22-4. Open 5pm-midnight (Sun -11pm) daily.
!Garni (Wakamatsu-Kawada - Japanese). 6457-4145
Yakiton (charcoal-grilled pork on skewers) is the main dish here, but instead of a smoky izakaya the atmosphere is closer to a stylish wine bar, with a selection of wines by the glass (Y680-1000) to go with your skewers - a great combination. [Show more]
no smokingSunmapShinjuku-ku, Ichigaya Nakanomachi 4-28. Open 5pm-midnight. Closed Tuesdays.
Ebiton (Ebisu - Yakiton). 3280-0017
Also known as Tetsugen Tonki Ebiton, this shop serves outstanding pork dishes - charcoal-grilled pork on skewers, pork steaks, pork horumon-ni (stewed organ meats) and grilled pigs' trotters - along with a selection of well-prepared izakaya-style small dishes. Two-hour party plans are Y3500 for several food dishes and all you can drink, or you can order a la carte.
mapShibuya-ku, Ebisu 4-1-18. Open 11:30am-3, 5pm-1am. Closed Sundays.
Shimbashi Yakiton (Shimbashi - Yakiton). 3539-4838
This after-work standing bar serves up excellent charcoal-grilled skewers of pork and chicken plus cheap drinks in an extremely casual setting. The ceiling is festooned with paper lanterns advertising beer and liquor brands. Patrons - mostly Shimbashi office workers stopping in for a drink on the way home - can stand at upturned barrels, communal tables or a long counter in front of the grill. There's also some outdoor standing room, which may be somewhat less smoky depending on your luck. [Show more]
mapMinato-ku, Shimbashi 1-14-8. Open 4-11pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
!Vin Picoeur (Ginza - Japanese). 3567-4122
"French barbecue" is the specialty here - basically kushiyaki with French names. Charcoal-grilled pork and chicken parts on skewers are served alongside excellent pate, foie gras, and pot-au-feu (amusingly described as French oden). The respectable in-house French wine list is supplemented by the book-size menu from sister restaurant Aux Amis des Vins just around the corner. Wine prices range from budget-friendly to stratospheric, and the multi-course set dinners (Y2800/Y4000) are a good deal. Seating is at the counter, with one small table in the back.
mapChuo-ku, Ginza 4-3-4. Open 6pm-midnight. Closed Sundays.
!Sasamoto (Ginza - Yakiton). 3564-5881
The specialties of the house at Sasamoto are grilled skewers of pork and beef, with an emphasis on organ meats. They're also known for their kushi-nikomi - pork giblets on skewers in a rich miso-based stew. You can order a la carte (there are around fifteen different grilled skewers), or take the easy approach with one of the set menus that feature a variety of grilled items plus one small portion of stew. [Show more]
SunmapChuo-ku, Ginza 4-3-7, Hanabishi Bldg 1F. Open 4:30-11pm. Closed Mondays.
Vin Picoeur Marunouchi (Marunouchi - Japanese). 6212-1011
French-style Japanese kushiyaki (or is it the other way around?) - charcoal-grilled pork and other meats, with some French dishes like pot-au-feu. The French wine list is very large.
mapChiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 3-3-1, Shin-Tokyo Bldg. B1F. Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Makotoya (Yotsuya 3-chome - Yakiton). 6380-0829
Charcoal-grilled pork on skewers is the big draw here, and they serve a good variety of organ meats as well as the usual cuts like pork belly. They prepare some very nice yakitori, and they offer good sake and shochu selections, all at very reasonable prices. The old-school izakaya atmosphere is comfortable, although the air can get a bit smoky at times depending on where you're sitting.
mapShinjuku-ku, Arakicho 1-1. Open 5pm-midnight. Closed Sundays.
Buta Ichiro (Asakusabashi - Yakiton). 3863-9550
Charcoal-grilled skewers of pork and chicken are the main draw at this very informal after-work drinking spot, along with some decent sake and quite a bit of shochu. While there's some tatami seating upstairs, it's mainly a standing bar, well suited to dropping in for a quick drink and snack on your way home or to another bar. [Show more]
SunmapTaito-ku, Asakusabashi 1-9-9. Open 5pm-midnight (LO) daily.
Le Porc de Versailles (Kinshicho - Izakaya). 5624-0320
An amusingly themed "Royal Pork" restaurant serving pork dishes from around the world: charcoal-grilled skewers, shabu-shabu, dim sum, pot au feu, etc. There's also a "celebrity pork" section of premium small-farm brands from around Japan and Spain. Budget around Y4000 for dinner.
SunmapSumida-ku, Kotobashi 3-13-6, Kinsia Bldg 5F. (directly in front of Kinshicho station) Open 5-11:30pm (to 4:30am Fri/Sat) daily.
Kurobutaya (Tachikawa - Izakaya). 042-524-7635
Gourmet pork from Kagoshima is the specialty here - charcoal-grilled, and served as shabu-shabu, dumplings and cutlets. The drinks menu includes a good selection of shochu from that part of Kyushu as well. [Go to branch review]
SunmapTachikawa, Akebonocho 2-1-1, Lumine Tachikawa 8F. Open 11am-10pm daily.
Kurobutaya (Kyodo - Izakaya). 5426-3080
Gourmet pork from Kagoshima is the specialty here - charcoal-grilled, and served as shabu-shabu, dumplings and cutlets. The drinks menu includes a good selection of shochu from that part of Kyushu as well. [Go to branch review]
lateSunmapSetagaya-ku, Kyodo 1-21-22, Shop Kyodo 2F. Open 5:30pm-1am (LO) daily.
Aen (Jiyugaoka - Japanese). 5731-8251
Good, healthy cooking based on organic vegetables and high-quality seasonal ingredients. The menu ranges from vegetable sushi on brown rice to parma ham and rucola pizzas; they also serve a number of gourmet pork dishes. Budget around Y4500 at dinnertime.
SunmapMeguro-ku, Jiyugaoka 2-8-20. Open 11am-5, 5-9pm (LO) daily.
Kurobutaya (Machida - Izakaya). 042-524-7635
Gourmet pork from Kagoshima is the specialty here - charcoal-grilled, and served as shabu-shabu, dumplings and cutlets. The drinks menu includes a good selection of shochu from that part of Kyushu as well. [Go to branch review]
SunmapMachida-shi, Hara Machida 6-1-11, Lumine Machida 9F. Open 11am-10pm daily.
Kurobutaya (Yokohama Sta. - Izakaya). 045-441-2919
Gourmet Berkshire pork is the specialty here, made into everything from Kyushu-style kakuni stews to homemade sausages to Chinese dumplings. Drinks include shochu, assorted plum wines and one or two decent sakes. [Go to branch review]
SunmapTakashima 2-16-1, Lumine Yokohama 7F. Open 11am-11pm daily.

Gyukatsu (beef cutlet)

Iroha (Ikebukuro - Gyukatsu). 3971-2838
Iroha's gyukatsu is covered with a thin, crunchy coating that softens quickly when dipped in sauce. Each diner is supplied with a miniature brazier with which to heat up individual slices of beef that may have cooled off on the plate. The meat is quite tasty after ten seconds on the grill and a brief dip in freshly ground salt, but a splash of the intensely flavored onion sauce makes it even better. [Show more]
SunmapToshima-ku, Higashi-Ikebukuro 1-9-7, Tomoaki Bldg B1F. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
Aona (Takadanobaba - Gyukatsu). 6908-9779
The beef cutlet here has a lovely, extra-crunchy coating, and it's accompanied by a well-constructed vegetable salad and a tasty, peppery soup. Condiments include artisanal rock salt and oil with red pepper, and for an extra Y100 you can order a knob of fresh wasabi and a grinder. [Show more]
no smokingSunmapShinjuku-ku, Takadanobaba 3-2-5. Open 11:30am-10:30pm daily.
!Motomura (Shinjuku - Gyukatsu). 3354-0171
There are lines to get into Motomura day and night, and it's easy to understand why once you've tasted their very popular gyukatsu (deep-fried beef cutlet). Served rare in the middle with a thin, crunchy layer of breading around it, the lightly marbled beef is tender and very flavorful. Season it to taste with rock salt, pepper, onion sauce, soy sauce and wasabi; you can even grill it for a minute on the small hibachi at your table or counter. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 3-32-2 B1F. Open 11am-10pm daily.
Motomura Miyamasuza-ten (Shibuya - Gyukatsu). 3406-3530
Excellent deep-fried beef cutlet is the draw at this popular beef specialist; prices start at Y1200 for a single portion of meat, or Y1900 for a double portion, with rice and side dishes.
SunmapShibuya-ku, Shibuya 2-19-17, Gloria Shibuya B1F. Open 11am-10pm daily.
Motomura (Yaesu - Gyukatsu). 3231-0337
Excellent deep-fried beef cutlet is the draw at this small (nine-seat) counter restaurant. Prices start at Y1200 for a single portion of meat, or Y1900 for a double portion, with rice and side dishes.
SunmapChuo-ku, Yaesu 1-6-14. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO; Sat -10, Sun -9) daily.
!Ippoippo (Yotsuya - Izakaya). 6273-1669
The lunch menu here is quite simple - gyukatsu teishoku (fried beef cutlet) is all they serve. It's a nice version too, properly rare in the middle, crunchy on the outside, with a bit more fat than usual, to add some extra flavor. Salt, ponzu and soy sauce are provided for dipping, along with a mound of wasabi. The side dish - fried tofu ball with vegetables - makes this a well-balanced meal. [Show more]
mapShinjuku-ku, Yotsuya 1-20, Koizumi Bldg B1F. Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Katchan (Jimbocho - Gyukatsu). 5577-6050
The recommended dish here is the double-size portion of gyukatsu (beef cutlet) with menchi katsu (deep-fried minced-meat patty) on the side (Y1180). The beef is tender and served rare in the middle, with wasabi and an excellent sauce that's both spicy and a bit sweet. The menchi katsu is the perfect counterpoint - very juicy with lots of onion bits adding texture and flavor, wrapped in a crunchy fried shell. [Show more]
no smokingmapChiyoda-ku, Kanda Jimbocho 1-8. Open 11am-3:30, 5-10:30pm. Closed Sundays.
Katsugyu (Ogawamachi - Gyukatsu). 3292-7802
The gyukatsu (deep-fried beef cutlet) at this Kyoto-based shop has a nice thick, crunchy coating, and the beef has a decent amount of fat attached to it, but somehow the flavor of the meat itself is more subtle and less assertive than is typical for this dish. Condiments include the usual wasabi, a salt and pepper mix (probably the best match), an original sauce, soy sauce, and a curry-flavored dip that's tasty but somewhat overpowering. [Show more]
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Kanda Mitoshirocho 9-7, Chiyoda 21 Bldg 1F. Open 11am-9:30pm (LO) daily.
Katsugyu (Akihabara - Gyukatsu). 3251-0090
Deep-fried beef cutlet is the specialty at this branch of the Kyoto-based restaurant. Set meals are priced Y1180-1580.
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Kanda Hanaokacho 1-1, Yodobashi Akiba 8F. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!Asakusa Gyukatsu (Asakusa - Gyukatsu). 3842-1800
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 though - this is also one of our favorites in town, assertively pungent with a bit of peppery kick to it. [Show more]
no smokingSunmapTaito-ku, Kaminarimon 2-17-10, Kaminarimon Uemura Bldg B1F. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO; Sat -9:30, Sun -8:30) daily.

Beef tongue

!Rikyu (Ikebukuro - Yoshoku). 5952-0404
One of several Tokyo outlets of this popular Sendai-based beef-tongue specialist, this branch offers an especially wide menu. The more than a dozen dishes range from tongue sausages, meatballs, and deep-fried tongue to curries, European-style stews and tongue sushi. The piece de resistance though is the excellent charcoal-grilled tongue - a popular regional specialty of Sendai, where this small chain restaurant originates. The menu is rounded out by creative and original izakaya fare, with a nice selection of Sendai-area sake to wash it all down. [See FULL REVIEW.]
SunmapToshima-ku, Nishi-Ikebukuro 1-12-1, Esola Ikebukuro 7F. Open 11am-10pm (LO) daily.
!Vector Beer (Shinjuku Gyoen-mae - Izakaya). 6380-0742
It may look like just another Tokyo craft-beer bar, but Vector serves up an appealing menu of beef-tongue dishes and other solid izakaya fare, making it a popular dining destination as well as a bar. The charcoal-grilled sumibiyaki tongue (Y980) in particular is a crowd favorite - slightly chewy and cut a bit thinner than average, with a nice charcoal-infused flavor that's complemented by the accompanying wasabi and crunchy pickled hakusai. [Show more]
mapShinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 1-36-5, Hotel Park Inn 1F. Open 5pm-1am (LO, Sat -11:30). Closed Sundays.
Rikyu (Shinjuku - Yoshoku). 5312-6211
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. [Go to branch review]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 3-38-1, Lumine EST Shinjuku 7F. Open 11am-11pm daily.
Rikyu (Shibuya - Yoshoku). 3486-2351
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. [Go to branch review]
SunmapShibuya-ku, Shibuya 2-21-1, Shibuya Hikarie 6F. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!Rikyu (Akasaka - Yoshoku). 3568-7787
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. [Go to branch review]
SunmapMinato-ku, Akasaka 3-14-8, Akasaka Sagamiya Bldg 2F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 5-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!Date no Gyutan (Marunouchi - Japanese regional). 6256-0810
Charcoal-grilled beef tongue is the specialty at this branch of a Sendai-based chain. You can choose from miso or salt-grilled, or you can get a combination of the two - we recommend the salt as it brings out the charcoal flavoring better. The tongue itself is pleasantly chewy, and comes in thick-cut and extra-thick-cut versions, in regular and extra-large portions, all with excellent pickles on the side. [Show more]
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 2-7-2, JP Tower Kitte B1F. Open 10am-9pm (LO; Sun -8pm) daily.
Rikyu (Yaesu - Yoshoku). 5220-6811
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. Located in the North Court dining area in the middle of Tokyo Station (within the gates). [Go to branch review]
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 1-9-1, JR Tokyo Station 1F North Court. Open 7am-10pm (LO) daily.
Kisuke (Yaesu - Japanese). 3215-2050
Beef tongue cuisine is a specialty of Sendai, and this is the first Tokyo branch of a famous Sendai shop. The grilled tongue teishoku is a good place to start (Y1300); it comes with a hefty portion of tongue, oxtail soup, and nice spicy pickles. Seating is a bit tight, but prices are correspondingly budget-friendly.
SunmapChiyoda-ku, Marunouchi 1-9-1, Kitchen Street (1F). Open 11am-11pm daily.
!Shinobu (Yotsuya - Japanese). 3355-6338
We've tried our share of beef tongue - a culinary specialty of the Sendai area - and this unprentious Yotsuya izakaya serves some of the best that we've ever had. It's not exactly a secret though - there's almost always a line outside, so call ahead to reserve your spot. [Show more]
mapShinjuku-ku, Saneicho 16. Open 5-10:30pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Rikyu (Oshiage - Yoshoku). 5610-2855
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. [Go to branch review]
SunmapSumida-ku, Oshiage 1-1-2, Tokyo Solamachi 6F East Yard. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!Rikyu (Kichijoji - Yoshoku). 0422-23-8141
Good charcoal-grilled beef tongue from this Sendai-based chain. You'll also find beef-tongue curries, stews, sausages and other yoshoku-style dishes, along with regional sake from Miyagi Prefecture. A set menu with grilled tongue, curry, oxtail soup and salad is Y1575. [Go to branch review]
SunmapMusashino-shi, Kichijoji Minamicho 1-1-24, Atre Kichijoji B1F. Open 11am-10:30pm (LO) daily.

Other meat specialties

!Numata (Shinjuku - Izakaya). 3350-5029
Fans of gyumotsu nikomi can choose three different varieties of stew at this popular specialty izakaya. The soy sauce-based version probably best shows off the individual flavors of the various organ meats, while the miso and extra-spicy miso versions will satisfy those who like a richer, deeper sauce. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 3-6-3, 2F. Open 5pm-midnight daily.
!Bakuro (Ebisu - Kyushu). 5459-8348
If you're not well acquainted with the subtleties of horsemeat cuisine, Bakuro can be a revelation. The food here is fantastic, showcasing a surprisingly wide range of flavors and styles. The atmosphere is lively and fun, the drinks list is well put together, and prices are very reasonable for this level of quality. [Show more]
mapShibuya-ku, Ebisu-Nishi 1-7-12. Open 5-11:30pm. Closed Sundays.
!Tetsugen (Ebisu - Izakaya). 5768-5537
The wide menu here covers a lot of ground, but particularly notable are the top-quality meat dishes featuring Hokkaido lamb, game birds and gourmet pork. The cozy dining room has mostly counter seating, with two small hori-kotatsu tables. Budget around Y4000.
lateSunmapShibuya-ku, Ebisu-Minami 1-2-8. Open 6pm-3am (LO; 10pm Sun) daily.
Dandan (Kayabacho - Izakaya). 3551-4920
This very old-fashioned izakaya has a genuine shitamachi feel to it - sumo paraphernalia on the walls, a TV set going in the corner, and three big communal tables for customers. The shop is known for their beef motsu nikomi (organ-meat stew), a salty, intensely flavored miso-based stew featuring a variety of organ meats. [Show more]
no smokingmapChuo-ku, Shinkawa 1-8-20. Open 5-10pm. Closed weekends.
!Abuzo (Akebonobashi - Izakaya). 3341-3214
A cozy neighborhood izakaya, Abuzo specializes in charcoal-grilled beef, pork, chicken and ocean trout, with a decent sake list alongside. The white chicken livers, fresh every day, are a revelation, as is the grilled vegetable salad. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Sumiyoshicho 8-20. Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-10:30pm (LO) daily.
!Nikuzushi (Iidabashi - Japanese). 3260-6789
If you don't mind the informal setting, this unpretentious back-alley izakaya is a great place to explore the mysterious delights of horsemeat sushi and other raw-meat delicacies. The ten-piece Kagurazaka sushi platter (Y3200) is a good starting point - it includes a few different cuts of horse along with lightly seared chicken and raw wagyu beef, all prepared as sushi. [Show more]
SunmapShinjuku-ku, Kagurazaka 1-14, Michisaku Yokocho. Open 5pm-5am (Sun 4-12) daily.
Bakuro (Kanda - Kyushu). 3253-8348
The food menu at this casual izakaya is built around horsemeat - you can enjoy it raw, grilled yakiniku-style, stewed, smoked or served as sausages. There's also standard Kyushu-style izakaya fare - raw and grilled seafood, satsuma-age fishcakes and so on - and a menu of sake and shochu to go with it all. Budget around Y3000 at dinnertime. [Go to branch review]
mapChiyoda-ku, Uchi-Kanda 3-4-8. Open 5-11pm. Closed Sundays.
!Bakuro Kanda South (Kanda - Japanese regional). 3516-8348
Some of the best horse sashimi and grilled horse in town are served at this lively after-work spot, all at very reasonable prices. The assorted sashimi platter featuring five different cuts of meat is most highly recommended (Y1080 for two) - all the cuts are very tender, and this is a great way to compare the different flavors. Yukke, minced raw horsemeat mixed with raw egg, onions and soy sauce, is sweeter and less spicy than your typical Korean beef yukke, and also worth a try. [Show more]
mapChuo-ku, Nihonbashi Hongokucho 4-4-12. Open 5-11:29pm (Sat 4-10). Closed Sundays.
!Momonja (Ryogoku - Nabemono). 3631-5596
They've been serving wild boar for 280 years now, and their signature boar stew is Y4000 a pot. Other dishes include venison stew and venison sashimi.
mapSumida-ku, Ryogoku 1-10-2. (across the street from Ryogoku koban, about 5 min from JR Ryogoku W exit) Open 5-9pm. Closed Sundays.
Hikaru (Nakano - Izakaya). 3388-8778
A very informal drinking spot, Hikaru serves cheap beers and cocktails along with a small but focused selection of snacks to go with your booze - grilled fish, grilled vegetables, deep-fried heirloom-breed chicken and an intensely flavored beef-tripe stew (motsu nikomi). The nikomi stew is a standout, showcasing five different beef organ meats in a rich miso-based broth. [Show more]
SunmapNakano-ku, Nakano 5-47-3. Open 5pm-1am daily.
Gyuhachi (Koenji - Izakaya). 3310-0555
Located under the JR railroad tracks, this very casual drinking spot serves great charcoal-grilled beef on skewers, including a variety of organ meats. Surrounded by similarly inexpensive and informal shops, it makes a nice stop on a bar-hopping tour of the neighborhood. Budget around Y2000 for food and drink.
SunmapSuginami-ku, Koenji-Minami 3-69-1. Open 4pm-midnight daily.