A small, casual Italian wine bar that serves around twenty wines by the glass, in all price ranges, along with light snacks. From a quiet location on the edge of Higashi 6-chome, Enoteca Implicito beckons lovers of Italian wine towards its soft amber lights. The daily wine list features eight reds, four whites, and about as many sparklers (Y750-1800 by the glass). Specials are showcased monthly, and winery representatives occasionally stop by to give talks. The staff frequently opens difficult to find bottles to offer rare, albeit expensive, samples (on a recent visit, a Gravner '00 Berg was Y3000 per 100ml taste).
Settle in among the well-heeled crowd and soak up some European ambience as you sip on your Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Food is limited to snacks of salami, cheese, and hors d'ouerves like marinated seafood - just enough to whet your appetite. If you're in the mood for dinner proper, walk down the spiral staircase to their sister restaurant Osteria Splendido for some thoughtfully prepared Italian fare to go with your vino. Menu in Italian and Japanese. [Show more] [Show less]
Good food served in a 1930s Shanghai junkshop interior.
Minami-Aoyama 7-8-1. (on Roppongi-dori, next to Ari's Lamplight) Open 11:30am-2, 6-10:30pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
300 single-malt whiskies, a couple of interesting Scottish ales (Dark Island and Black Cuillin, from Orkney and Skye respectively), and an interesting food menu, including haggis, Welsh rarebit and kipper herring. Open shockingly late.
A snazzy little grill-counter setup specializing in Japanese beef steaks and other grilled meats (lamb, Iberico pork), French teppanyaki style. The prix-fixe menus also include the shop's original curry-rice after the main course. The all-French wine list ranges from Y3000 - Y177,000 per bottle; dinners from Y4095.
Officially known as "Rhum et cafe Tafia," this bar's emphasis is more on the rum end of the spectrum, with a breathtaking variety (some 300 bottles) that includes limited-edition labels that you won't find in shops.
Nishi-Azabu 2-15-14, West Point Bldg 1F. Open 5pm-4:30am. Closed Sundays.
Excellent grilled fish and meats and friendly service in this lovely converted two-story house. Full-course dinnertime menus from Y2500. There are semi-private rooms on the ground floor and an open party space upstairs, but the counter seating offers the best view of the chefs at work on the grill. [See FULL REVIEW
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). 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).
The frying technique produces a light, crunchy coating, and they recommend trying the tonkatsu with just a pinch of salt rather than sauce. The pickles and soup are first-rate, and the excellent dressing for the cabbage had us asking for refills. The setting is a charming old converted house on a Nishi-Azabu back street. Drinks include Hakkaisan sake, a couple of shochus, Premium Malts beer and several wines. [Show more] [Show less]
Nishi-Azabu 2-24-9. Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO). Closed Mondays.
A convenient late-night Italian standby.
Top-notch creative seasonal Japanese cuisine from innovative young chef Naohiro Watanabe. The attitude towards the food and atmosphere is fun and relaxed rather than stiff and formal. While the ingredients are top-grade, there are welcome playful touches in both the cooking and decor. Top-notch creative seasonal Japanese cuisine from innovative young chef Naohiro Watanabe. The attitude towards the food and atmosphere is fun and relaxed rather than stiff and formal. While the ingredients are top-grade, there are welcome playful touches in both the cooking and decor.
The single prix-fixe menu is Y10,000; drink options include both French wines and Japanese sake. [Show more] [Show less]
Nishi-Azabu 2-26-21 B1F. Open 6-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
It's unusual to find high-quality sushi like this outside Ginza, but here it's presented in a modern dining room with late-night hours. They also serve French wines as an alternative to sake; wines from Y1000/ glass or Y10,000-Y150,000/ bottle. Budget around Y18,000 for dinner.
Good Peking-style food in a well-established neighborhood restaurant. Dinner averages around Y7,000.
Nishi-Azabu 2-12-1. Open 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO) daily.
Well-prepared, casual California-Mexican dishes and a variety of ever-popular frozen margaritas.
A stylishly decorated restaurant in a converted two-story house. The food is spicy and authentic, with plenty of original dishes to show off the chef's talents. There's a nice selection of Australian/California wines to go with the food. Reservations recommended. No smoking 6-9pm.
Nishi-Azabu 2-7-9. Open noon-2pm, 6-10pm (LO). Closed Sundays and holidays.
A very-late-night bar with a local crowd and a simple but fairly good food menu. Cover charge.
Nishi-Azabu 2-5-6. (on Gaien-Nishi-dori, near the overpass next to the cemetery) Open 8pm-8am daily.
Good sushi and other straight-ahead Japanese fare from the late-night Global Dining group (La Boheme, Zest, etc.). The massive, multi-story space is always buzzing with activity, and sometimes seems to be the center of an international social scene in Tokyo.
Excellent miso-style ramen. Gogyo blackens their miso in a kitchen-side fire show while preparing the soup.
This is the Tokyo outpost of the famous restaurant in Alsace, which has been awarded three Michelin stars for forty years in a row. The rather grand building was once home to the Georgian Club restaurant. Managed by the Hiramatsu group. Weekday lunches from Y4200, and prix-fixe dinners from Y10,500.
Nishi-Azabu 1-6-4. Open 11:30am-2, 5:30-8:30pm (LO). Closed Mondays.
Yes, this cafe would be worth knowing about for their dessert souffles alone. But they also offer a full menu of remarkably high-quality French cooking, from straightforward starters like scallop salad and foie gras to substantial meat and fish dishes. Plus, some dozen savory souffles. [See FULL REVIEW
Nishi-Azabu 3-13-10. Open noon-10pm (LO). Closed Mondays.
The tandoori items here are excellent - succulent, beautifully spiced chicken tikka, enticing kebabs and prawns; even the nan is a flavorful surprise. Dinner around Y3,000 - 4,000 per person.
Nishi-Azabu 4-11-28. Open 11:30am-2:30, 5:30-10:30pm. Closed Sundays.
Serious Italian cooking from Tuscan native and sometime TV chef Mario Frittoli (formerly of Luxor and Il Pinolo). Signature dishes include pistachio gnocchi with scampi and asparagus, and pappardelle with wild-boar ragu. Full-course dinners Y7,500 - 10,000 or a la carte; lunches (weekdays only) Y1,000 - 5,000.
Nishi-Azabu 4-1-10. Open 11:30am-1:30, 6-11pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
Although it's best known in its convenience-store and yatai manifestations, oden can be a cuisine of great subtlety and refinement, and Konbuya in Nishi-Azabu is an excellent place to investigate the mysteries of gourmet oden preparation. There's also a very nice selection of sake and shochu to go with it. [See FULL REVIEW
A casual, medium-priced bistro on Nishi-Azabu's "bistro-dori"; the food is excellent.
Nishi-Azabu 4-2-10. Open noon-2, 6-10pm (LO). Closed Mondays.
The sign outside of Elevage reads simply, "Rare wine and spirits," but one look inside and wine lovers will swoon, whiskey connoisseurs will drool. Prices aren't cheap, but Elevage is one of the few bars in Tokyo where you can order wines like Clos des Lambraye Grand Cru and Chateau d'Yquem by the glass. The sign outside of Elevage reads simply, "Rare wine and spirits," but one look inside and wine lovers will swoon, whiskey connoisseurs will drool. Racks stocked with hundreds of bottles of whiskey, brandy, and Calvados flank the entrance, while an army of wine bottles stands proudly behind the glass wall to the right. Hidden away in Nishi-Azabu, this quiet little bar is a great place for aficionados and novices alike to broaden their drinking horizons.
The Wagner-loving Yoshida-san will be more than happy to guide you through the daily-changing list of wines by the glass. It typically features around fifteen wines - reds, whites, sparklers, and dessert wines, as well as a couple of sake selections, ranging in price from Y600 - Y4000.
Park yourself at the bar to learn the proper way to open a wine bottle from Yoshida-san, or relax with your drink at the table by the window. Snack on assorted charcuterie (Y2000) while you thumb through the extensive menu and contemplate your next selection. Prices aren't cheap, but Elevage is one of the few bars in Tokyo where you can order wines like Clos des Lambraye Grand Cru and Chateau d'Yquem by the glass. [Show more] [Show less]
Nishi-Azabu 4-2-13, Hachiman Bldg 2F. Open 7pm-1am. Closed Sundays.
This long-running Nishi-Azabu standby is one of the pioneers in tapas-style "mukokuseki" (no-nationality) dining. The service can be moody at times, but the food is usually quite interesting.
Nishi-Azabu 4-2-15. Open 6-9:45pm (LO). Closed Sundays, Mondays.
Fondue-centered full-course dinners from 5000 yen.
Nishi-Azabu 4-4-5, APA Hotel 1F. Open 11:30am-2:30, 6-11pm daily.
The ground-floor bakery includes a cafe area where you can enjoy fresh-baked bread and pastries with your morning coffee from 7am.
Minami-Azabu 5-1-6, La Saccaia Minami-Azabu 1/2 F. Open 7-10am, 11am-4pm, 5-10:30pm (LO) daily.
Organic grocer Daichi wo Mamoru Kai supplies this smart Japanese bistro with organic fish and meat, pesticide-free produce, and even organic alcohol. Organic grocer Daichi wo Mamoru Kai supplies this smart Japanese bistro with organic fish and meat, pesticide-free produce, and even organic alcohol.
Lunch (Y900 - ) is a great value here. A fillet of grilled mackerel himono - fish that's been gutted, salted and then dried overnight - is juicy and rich in umami, and comes with an assortment of small side dishes such as soy-simmered potatoes, savory pickled greens tossed with chirimen baby sardines and smoky dashi-steeped spinach. One of the highlights is the free-range short horn beef croquette, a golf-sized ball of tender but lean minced beef mixed with Japanese leeks and fried. [Show more] [Show less]
Hiroo 5-4-11. Open 11:30am-2, 6-11pm (LO) daily.
A comfortable neighborhood place with attentive service and reliable pasta dishes. The pasta or pizza lunch is Y1200.
Minami-Azabu 5-15-25. Open 11:30am-2, 6-11pm daily.
The second branch of the Shiroganedai-based burger shop, serving gourmet sandwiches as well as American-style burgers. The pastrami sandwich (Y1100) is exclusive to this branch.
Minami-Azabu 5-15-25 2F. Open 11:30am-10:30pm (LO) daily.
A large selection of French and Italian wines, many at the higher end of the price scale. There's a 5% discount if you join their "club".
Minami-Azabu 5-14-15, Arisugawa West Bldg 1F. Open 11am-8pm daily.
The very talented Chef Ueki serves up contemporary international cuisine with a French base; it's the kind of place where the staff lovingly describe every ingredient on each plate as it arrives at your table. The separate bar area is open till 4am (except Sundays); Y500 table charge. The very talented Chef Ueki serves up contemporary international cuisine with a French base; it's the kind of place where the staff lovingly describe every ingredient on each plate as it arrives at your table. The beautiful organic vegetables are especially impressive.
The dining room is elegantly decorated and quite spacious, with plenty of light at lunchtime. Lunch starts at Y1500, with prix-fixe dinners from Y4800. The separate bar area is open till 4am (except Sundays); Y500 table charge. [Show more] [Show less]
A casual, open-air, dog-friendly cafe on a back street behind Hiroo station. The food menu tends toward Hawaiian and Asian fusion, with above-average prices.
This simple, cheerfully decorated spot serves authentic and tasty Mexican food at friendly prices. Formerly located alongside the tracks in Ebisu, they now occupy slightly larger quarters near Hiroo station.
Minami-Azabu 4-5-65, B1F. Open 11:45am-1:45, 5:30-10:30pm (LO) daily.
One of the best of the international supermarkets, with the widest range of imported foods in Tokyo (along with Nissin in Azabu-Juban). You'll find good selections of wines, cold cuts and imported cheeses, muesli and other breakfast cereals, canned soups, cake mixes, candies and many other European and North American products. They deliver within about a 20-minute radius of the store.
Minami-Azabu 4-5-2. Open 9am-8pm daily.
Run-of-the-mill "Mexican"-flavored American food. Often crowded, and popular with American families. No smoking.
Ibiza calls itself a "fisherman's diner," and this unpretentious neighborhood spot offers a great selection of fresh-caught fish and seafood. Simple home-style recipes rely on the high quality of the ingredients rather than showing off any dazzling cooking tricks. Ibiza calls itself a "fisherman's diner," and this unpretentious neighborhood spot offers a great selection of fresh-caught fish and seafood. Simple home-style recipes rely on the high quality of the ingredients rather than showing off any dazzling cooking tricks.
On a recent visit we enjoyed kisu (whiting) fritters flavored with ume and shiso; big portions of miso-simmered ginmutsu (bluefish); and first-rate grilled salmon belly. The hone-sembei (toasted mackerel bones) were crunchy and very tasty, and the cold chunks of cucumber in miso-meat sauce provided nice contrasts of flavor, texture and temperature.
If you're a fan of craft sake you'll probably find something to your liking on the extensive list; they also stock various Chinese liqueurs and ten kinds of umeshu. Budget around Y4000 with drinks. Note that the menus and service are in Japanese only, and the restaurant is quite busy, so bring a Japanese-speaking friend if you're not comfortable negotiating the menu. [Show more] [Show less]
Hiroo 5-16-16 2F. Open 6pm-midnight.
A wide range of Okinawan standards and unusual original dishes (like aloe sashimi), plus plenty of awamori.
Terrific overstuffed sandwiches and great burgers in a pleasant cafe-style setting. They also provide thirty-minute delivery within the area.
A trendy but comfortable cafe where you can enjoy the open-air front section during the warmer months. The back area is set up like a very large living room, with plenty of sofas for lounging. (Note that after 6pm there's a table charge in some areas of the cafe - Y500 per person at tables in the back, Y1000 per person on the sofas.) The desserts are especially recommended (they also run a wholesale cake shop from the basement).
Serious, modern Italian dining in a very tasteful setting. The extensive pasta section includes items like home-made pici with duck ragout and home-made tagliolini with anchovies and mushrooms. Starters average around Y2000; pastas Y2500, mains Y3000. The extensive wine list covers all of Italy and includes a handful of bottles for Y6800 and under, with most in the Y8000-15,000 range. Prix-fixe lunches (starting at Y1800) are an especially good deal.
Minami-Azabu 4-2-42. Open 11:30am-2, 6-10pm. Closed Sundays.
Ebisu 2-22-10. Open noon-2, 6-9:30pm (LO). Closed Sundays.
This cozy bistrot serves hearty French country cuisine - cassoulets, blood sausages - and many reasonly priced wines by the glass or bottle. The late-night hours are convenient, and perhaps the best time to visit; the counter can get a bit cramped and smoky earlier in the evening.