The 24 hour shops have a range of pre-cooked options, with the possibility to cook or re-heat some of the dishes they sell (including noodles and rice).
Although it's not quite as ancient as China's, nor as world-renowned as French food, Japanese cuisine has conquered the world.
Among the most important dishes in Japanese gastronomy are:
- Sushi: boiled rice with a variety of different ingredients. It most commonly comes with raw fish or seafood, but this is not the only variety.
- Sashimi: A kind of raw fish or seafood carpaccio
- Ramen: Japanese noodle soup. This soup has various different types, (salt, soy, or miso) and comes accompanied by different accompaniments (such as chicken, pork, eggs etc).
- Okonomiyaki: Some compare this dish to pizza, others to omelette - it's a fried egg, onion and cabbage mix with various spices, fried.
- Yakitori: Although this is traditionally defined as grilled chicken skewers, these days you can find beef yakitori, fish yakitori, seafood yakitori and more.
- Gyoza: a steamed dumpling that is then fried - similar to Chinese Dim Sum.
- Yakisoba: Stir-fried noodles with pork and finely chopped vegetables.
- Teriyaki: This is more a cooking technique than a dish in itself. It's cooking with a soy sauce, mirin and sugar glaze.
- Tempura: Breaded and fried
- Fugu: The famous pufferfish, as expensive as it is poisonous, only for preparation and consumption in authorised locations.
Eating in Tokyo, and in Japan in general, can be surprisingly cheap. In the majority of places you can find dishes from ¥ 600 (US$ 4.20), and trust us, one dish is usually enough!
As well as the cheapness of the dishes, all restaurants have free water and tea. And you don't have to leave a tip.
However, if you're looking to spend a little more, you'll find plenty of restaurants where you can satisfy that desire.
Best places to eat in Tokyo
What might be clear in other cities, in Tokyo it's not so obvious where to go to eat. In most areas of the city you'll find similar spots, but if you want to go for the most typical, the Tsukiji Market is where you'll find the best sushi, or if you're feeling risky you can try the Fugu in Shinjuku.
If you're tired of Japanese food and you don't have too much time, there are also plenty of fast food joints you can head to. Local brands that compete with McDonalds and Burger King are Lotteria, First Kitchen (as well as hamburgers they have pasta and other dishes) and Mos Burger.
Bento Boxes are boxes of food to go. It's normal that, when travelling by train, Japanese people bring their own food.
These bento boxes are very reasonably priced, and you can find boxes from 500 yen. The majority of the supermarkets and restaurants serve food to go.
If you want to try delicious and authentic Japanese food, learning all about their culinary tradition, you should reserve a food tour in English. On our website you can book ahead of time, and ensure your place., with two different tours to choose from: