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Shibuya restaurants - Asian food
 
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secret-japan
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Nov 18, 2006 7:32 am Back to top

Shibuya area - Asian food





C YELLOW

Chikei - Hong Kong Men - Chinese **



S RED

Saigon - Vietnamese



M WHITE

Mandala - Nepalese



R WHITE

Reikyo - Taiwanese **/*****



J WHITE

Jembatan Merah - Indonesian food ***



K WHITE

Kantipur - Nepali ****



T WHITE

Tainantamii – Taiwanese ****



T WHITE

Siam - Thai ****



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fvz
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Sat Nov 18, 2006 8:44 am Back to top

Chikei - Hong Kong Men - Chinese **

Address - Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Shibuya PARCO PART1 7, 8F
Opening hours - Every day from 11:00am to Midnight
Telephone - 03-6415-7510
Menu - In Japanese, with pictures
CC - OK

An old friend of mine works for a ramen shop which has been recently turned by its Chinese owner into a Hong Kong Men restaurant because profits were in his view insufficient. Something as tasty as Hong Kong Men, a kind of thin ramen Hong Kongers are known to love, will surely prove irresistible, he thought, but sales have since plummeted even further, leaving him puzzled and in the middle of a vast pool of red ink: how come, he wonders, his clever plan has so miserably failed?
The question assailing my friend is instead: "How on earth does he expect this kind of crap to sell? Is what we make real Hong Kong Men? Surely something this bad cannot be the real thing.
His impression was supported by the fact that Mainland Chinese didn't seem to find it all that hot either. Yet customers from Honk Kong loved the stuff.
Resolved to get to the bottom of the story, he found another Hong Kong Men joint, called Chikei, in Shibuya (at the seventh or eight floor of Shibuya's Parco, Pt. 1), and invited me along. Since I am always curious to try new stuff, I went.
I must say that I believe that, as a rule, no self-respecting restaurant wants to be in a department store or, worse, of a supermarket like Seiyu, but since there are numerous exceptions to the rule, I suspended my judgement. He soon commented "Uchi to onaji mazusa." or, in plain English, "As bad as ours." It seems to him therefore likely that, to enjoy it, you must be born in Hong Kong.
I fear I must concur, even though, more than bad, it's just very bland stuff, simply thin noodles in some sort of thin soup not worth even the 580 yen Chikei wants for it. Edible, but not more.There's more to the menu than noodles, and decent stuff by any standard, but not enough in quantity (portions are minuscule) and variety to merit a visit and save Chikei, or Hong Kong Men, from the ax of this critic. If you want to eat Chinese, go somewhere else.




Saigon - Vietnamese

Address - Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Tokyu Toyokoten B1 F
Opening hours - Same as the Tokyu Department Store
Telephone - 03-3477-4684
Menu - In Japanese
Credit Cards - No

In the basement of the Tokyu Toyokoten Department Store (the one right next to Hachiko: how convenient ...), Saigon is no more than a corner among the many food stalls, and has just five seats. Although it even has a name, more than a restaurant it's just a place where you can have a quick but tasty bite while shopping around, but it's very good, cheap and fun, so that I don't mind at all eating there. The menu includes five or six different sets and nothing else, each of them costing around 900 - 1000 yen. The Vietnamese cooks take your orders and prepare the food right in front of you, something I have always liked here in Asia and that you never get in Europe.
I can't think of a better alternative to a hamburger at MacDonald's: it's almost as fast, almost as cheap and way better.




Mandala - Nepalese

Address - DK Shibuya Bldg 3F, 16-9 Sakuragaoka-cho, Shibuya-ku
Opening Hours - From 11:00 am to 2:30pm and 5:00pm to 1:00am
Telephone - 03-3463-5181
Credit Cards - OK

A second Nepalese restaurant (the first being the much older Kantipur) in Shibuya can't possibly hurt. Especially when it's as good as Mandala.

Mandala is defined as a Nepalese restaurant and bar, and this second attribute must be taken into serious consideration: the menu contains seven pages of drinks, a cornucopia including sake, vodka, whisky, bourbon, tequila, gin, rum ... there's no end to it. Strangely enough, there are no wines, even though they are in raging fashion at the moment.
The place is small, quiet and pleasant, if a little too typical with its wooden carvings and mandalas on the walls, and prices moderate, never over 1400 yen, but usually well below that limit.
I found the menu to be less rich than Kantipur's or Saultee Mode's, whose menus offer more traditional Nepali stuff, but excellent nonetheless. We had Masala Papadums, Tandoori Chicken Grill, Dahl Mutton, Chicken Hot Hot (fairly spicy, but eatable mutton curry), sekuwa and choyela, all good. More, even on a Friday night we had a beautiful table at the window all to ourselves for the whole evening, and so had all the time we needed to unwind. The bill (forget the bottom line at your peril) was just three thousand yen apiece including several beers.




Reikyo - Taiwanese ***** (sanji : **)
Shibuya and Okubo

Addresses -
Shibuya : Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Dogenzaka 2-25-18
Shinjuku : Shinjuku-ku, Hyakunincho 1-11-18
Opening hours - 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm and to 5:00 pm to 12:30
Telephones -
Shibuya : 03-3461-4220
Shinjuku : 03-3365-4357
Menu - In Japanese
Credit Cards - OK

see sanji comments below

Reikyo in Shibuya is, together with Tainantamii, which it strongly resembles, my favorite Taiwanese restaurant. Same atmosphere, same wonderful, tasty morsels, same reasonable prices, it's cute and an excellent idea for an evening in Shibuya. They also have a branch in Okubo (see address above), but I have never been there. To get there in Shibuya: turn left from 109 and go up Dogenzaka, then turn right at the first alley and you will see a red brick building. That's it.




Jembatan Merah - Indonesian food ***
Akasaka, Shibuya, Shinjuku

Opening hours - All are open every day from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm
Telephones -
Shibuya : 03-3476-6424
Shinjuku : 03-5323-4214
Akasaka : 03-3588-0794
Menu - In Japanese and English
Credit Cards - OK

November 11, 1996
Yesterday I met my friend David Mills, who has worked four years in Indonesia. He tells me that in his opinion I have it completely wrong. Jembatan Merah is the best Indonesian restaurant in town, he says, and Bengawan Solo the worst. I thought it fair to tell you, particularly because I haven't visited Bengawan Solo in a while. This is pluralism in action.

According to an Indonesian man I have met, the best Indonesian restaurant in town was the now defunct Jembatan Merah's Ikebukuro branch in the Sunshine City Building. To me, though, Jembatan Merah is the least impressive of the trio, but it is an Indonesian restaurant after all, so by definition worth mentioning. Besides, it really isn't bad. Good stuff, and decently priced.

Christmas 2001, a letter from Claus P. Regge:
Upon reading your very positive review of Jembatan Merah, Akasaka branch:
David Mills and I together with two young women, one of whom had lived in Indonesia for several years, went to Jembatan Merah a couple of weeks ago. To describe it in one word: atrocious. Some dishes like you'd expect at a cheap ramenya. Nothing, apparently, even close to an Indonesian original. Ice-cold red wine, almost freezing. Ask David -- he, too, was massively disappointed and felt the place had really gone downhill since his last visit.
Sic transit gloria mundi.




Kantipur - Nepali ****

Address - Shibuya-ku, Sakuragaokacho 16-6
Opening hours - Closed on Sunday
Open from 10:30 am to 11:00 pm
Telephone - 03-3770-5358
Menu - In English and Japanese
Credit Cards - OK

Nepali food might not be particularly original, but Kantipur is definitely worth your attention. It is much more elegant than Yeti, and the food just as good. You of course will pay for this elegance, but not too much. Plus, they do have lots of things you will not find at Yeti, some in the Indian Curry section, others (the most interesting) in the more purely Nepali part of the menu. Their Choyela, for example, are a very tasty cold meat dish.

Thukpa, which is completely unlike anything I had expected from Nepal, is a surprisingly Italian looking noodle soup which, in my opinion, one absolutely must try. I also love a spicy appetizer they make with roasted soy beans and raw onions, but unfortunately they only have it once every while.




Tainantamii – Taiwanese ****
Various Locations

Opening hours - Open every day from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm and from 5:00 to 11:00 (Ikebukuro and Suidobashi), 2:00 or 4:00 am (Shinjuku Kabuki-cho)
Telephones -
Shinjuku Shokuan Dori : 03-3232-8839
Shinjuku Kabuki-cho : 03-3209-5488
Shibuya : 03-3464-7544
Ikebukuro : 03-3988-1158
Suidobashi : 03-3262-4530
Suidobashi Big Egg : 03-3263-4007
Roppongi : 03-3408-2111

Menu - In Japanese and Chinese with pictures
Credit Cards - OK

This is a chain of really good restaurants in convenient neighborhoods. The food is not the Chinese stuff you are used to: fried peanuts with shirasu (tiny white fish), fried balls of squid paste, rotten eggs, red steamed rice and the like in diminutive amounts. You will like it, especially because it is on the cheap side, and really lovely. The menu seems endless, with always something yet to be discovered. In short, even if Tainantamii is always busy and one needs therefore patience (booking is impossible) I cannot recommend it enough. Satisfaction guaranteed.




Siam - Thai ****
Shibuya, Ginza and Yurakucho

Addresses -
Shibuya : Shibuya-ku, Jinnan 1-15-8, B1F
Ginza : Chuo-ku, Ginza-Nishi 3-1, Ginza INZ #1, 2F
Ginza : Chuo-ku, Ginza 5-8-17, World Town Bldg 8F
Opening hours - 11:30 am to 11:30 pm
Telephones -
Shibuya : 03-3770-0550
Ginza : 03-3572-4101
Ginza : 03-3563-3106
Menu - In Japanese and English
Credit Cards - OK

A Thai restaurant in Shibuya I trust is Siam. I used to be a very frequent customer of their Akasaka Mitsuke branch, which was very original in that it was the Thai equivalent of a Japanese Akachochin: you could eat lots of small dishes meant to accompany drink more than to feed you. I liked that. But it closed, so now I go to the Shibuya branch, reliable and reasonably priced. The food is the same we already know, nothing original or anything. From Hachiko, go ahead towards Harajuku and take the second street to the left, the one going up to the Olympic Pool and NHK. Walk on the right side of the street and, after the donut shop (I don't remember the name, but it's not important) start keeping your eyes open because your goal is near. There is a branch also in Ginza and one in Yurakucho, but I have never been there.

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sanji
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Thu Mar 08, 2007 11:27 am Back to top

Reikyo - Taiwanese ** (fvz : *****)
Shibuya and Okubo

Addresses -
Shibuya : Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Dogenzaka 2-25-18
Shinjuku : Shinjuku-ku, Hyakunincho 1-11-18
Opening hours - 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm and to 5:00 pm to 12:30
Telephones -
Shibuya : 03-3461-4220
Shinjuku : 03-3365-4357
Menu - In Japanese
Credit Cards - OK

see fvz comments above

I went to this restaurant yesterday, and since for the first time I had a completely different opinion than fvz, I thought I would raise it here...
The restaurant has a very typical design, with large tables accommodating around 10 persons. Which means that most of the time, you will be sitting with other groups. While this is not per se a problem, the fact that the restaurant has no non-smoking area is rather an issue: for me, it was difficult to enjoy my food when the person sitting 10 centimeters on my left was smoking during the whole evening!
But let's have a look at the food. I was rather disappointed by the similar taste found in several dishes - the classical glutamate sauce rendering the food quite sticky. The "five vegetables" plate and the "grilled noodle with shrimps" (5 small shrimps) had therefore exactly the same taste. You probably would better try their specialities, which include for example the "chicken with nuts", a tasty but terribly heavy dish where sesame oil was obviously overused. Or Chinese sausage.
Most dishes cost between 800 - 2000 yens, making that place a rather expensive one; as a matter of fact, it was overpriced for me.
Drink are reasonable. The nihon-shu is extremely cheap (300 yens for 1 go), but is almost undrinkable...
My final comment will be on the service - or rather, the lack of. Entering the restaurant (which was full on Wednesday night), no waiter came to guide us to a table; after 5 minutes, we had to go by ourselves to the second floor to find someone willing to show us some empty seats. When food was brought to our table, no extra plates were provided, and we had to ask 3 times to get some. Same with some sauce, missing on our table.

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Hank Freid
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PostYou have posted in this forum: Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:02 am Back to top

Hi,
Part of the Foodshow complex below Shibuya Station, this shop specializes in imported foods and liquors and offers a pretty wide selection.

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