Ginza: Bulgarian
Troyan (Ginza: Bulgarian)
Open 7-9:30, 11:30am-2, 5-10pm (LO) daily.
Sun: Open Sundays
no smoking: No smoking

Central Tokyo's only Bulgarian restaurant, Troyan offers an exotic menu of eastern Mediterranean dishes like moussaka, kofta meatballs, and cheese-filled filo pastries along with Bulgarian wines. The fare here may be closer to home-style cooking than fine dining, but there are a few standout dishes waiting to be discovered. Portions are impressively large, prices are reasonable, and the atmosphere is relaxed and casual.

The weekday buffet lunch is a good place to get acquainted with Bulgarian cuisine. In addition to one main dish of your choice, you can sample a nice variety of side dishes like tarator (creamy herb-infused cold yogurt soup), snezhanka (a thick yogurt salad studded with chopped vegetables), and shopska (a chunky cucumber-tomato salad).

More filling buffet items include curry-flavored meatballs, stewed vegetables, cold cuts and a few noodle dishes. The self-service drinks bar features ayran yogurt drink, various juices, rose water, iced coffee and tea, but unfortunately there's no dessert buffet. (You can order dessert a la carte if you still have room.)

At dinnertime the voluminous assorted meat platter (Y900 per person) is a tempting option. It comes with venison sausage, kofta meatballs, stewed pork, white beans and stewed vegetables, although the kofta is by far the best of the assortment so you might want to stick with that if you don't mind a bit less variety.

The Banitsa pastries stuffed with sirene cheese are surprisingly delicate, and well worth a try. If you get here early enough you can take advantage of Happy Hour (4:30-7pm) and enjoy Bulgarian wines for Y390 a glass. If you're intrigued by the sound of the "Bulgarian Highball" (as we were), it turns out to be fairly bland and tastes mainly of ginger ale.

The restaurant's ambience is very much that of a budget-hotel dining room, with video monitors showing local TV programs and European pop music playing in the background. Service is friendly and competent. (Troyan, by the way, is the newest incarnation of Tokyo's long-running Sofia restaurant, which was located in Yaesu.)

Budget around Y3000-4000 for dinner with drinks, Y1100 for the weekday lunch buffet, and around Y1500-4000 for fancy weekend prix-fixe lunch menus.

Chuo-ku, Ginza 1-9-5, Hotel Uniso Ginza 1-chome.
東京都中央区銀座1-9-5 ホテルユニゾ銀座一丁目1F

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Venue listing from Bento.com5 Star Rating: highly recommended