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2 Weeks in Japan: Tokyo-Kyoto-Takayama-Tokyo

Our trip was really amazing. We had high expectations and really all of them were met. We did go all out on this trip and had very, very few bad meals. This was our first time in Japan and I would definitely say our choices were geared more towards the greatest hits.

We did try to go to Sakana in Takayama, but it was closed the night we were there. We took Silverjay’s advice and ended up going to Maruaki instead. The meal was fine, but it was nothing I would go out of my way for. It was nice to go to a place where we were able to try several different cuts of Hida beef.

More than anything else, we loved how much emphases was placed on local and seasonal ingredients. Also, the amazing amount of care placed on presentation. During our meal at Kikunoi Roan, we watched one of the chefs in training spend well over an hour carefully cutting a single carrot into tiny identical matchsticks pieces. All the people we met and dealt with were just incredible kind and gracious.

The highlights of the trip for us were Tempura Ten-yu, Yumoto Chouza and Narisawa.

We would have liked to venture beyond Tokyo Station for Ramen, unfortunately, it didn't happen on this trip. We were very surprised by the intensity of the fish flavor in the broth at Rokurinsha. It was not something we were expecting although I know that Tokyo Ramen is know for the bonito content in the broth. We did try to go to Ikaruga on our last day, but it was a few days after New Years and they were closed.

We have lots of photos and I’m in the process of putting together a more in depth blog. Thanks again for everyone’s help. We can’t wait to go back and dig a little deeper under the surface.

Final Restaurant List:
Buchi
Sushi Dai
Kaikaya
Sushi Kanesaka
Birdland
Rokurinsha Tokyo – Tokyo Station
Tempura Ten-yu
Ryoanji Yudofuya
Kikunoi Roan
Le Bouchon
Honke Owariya
Tousuiro
Omen
Ryori Ryokan Hanaoka (Dinner and Breakfast)
Maruaki
Yumoto Chouza – Onsen-Ryokan (Dinner and Breakfast)
Tempura Rin
Maison
Les Creations de Narisawa
L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon
Daidaya
Osechi at Kozue
Yachiyo
Ryugin
Hirugao Ramen – Tokyo Station

Jan 30, 2011
lygamm in Japan

2 Weeks in Japan: Tokyo-Kyoto-Takayama-Tokyo

Thanks Silverjay. Your advice about Day 2 totally makes sense.

We made a reservation at Daidaiya for New Years Eve. They're definitely open and had availability. We just wanted to have something confirmed, but could always cancel it later.

Dec 17, 2010
lygamm in Japan

2 Weeks in Japan: Tokyo-Kyoto-Takayama-Tokyo

Thanks for your insight Jon. Its a big help. We are definitely planning on going for ramen, there's a lot of recommended place to sort through. But maybe we'll head up to Takadanobaba.
Cheers

Dec 11, 2010
lygamm in Japan

2 Weeks in Japan: Tokyo-Kyoto-Takayama-Tokyo

Hi:

My wife and I are leaving in two weeks for two weeks in Japan. We’ve never been before but after many weeks of studying the boards are very excited for what sounds like amazing food. Unfortunately, neither one of us speaks a word of Japanese (our French is perfect, if that would help somewhere – you never know) but we’re patient and hopeful that it won’t be that much of a problem.

Anyway, here’s our itinerary so far. I’d love some feedback. Not a lot of lunches listed, I figured we’d rely on Bento.com depending on what neighborhoods we’re in.

I know a lot is closed around New Years, we made a point of being back in Tokyo and made a few reservations around the holiday. We’d love some ideas in Shinjuku for NYE. Thanks so much.

Tokyo - Staying in Shibuya
Day 1
Dinner: Kaikaiya (if we’re not exhausted)

Tokyo - Staying in Shibuya
Day 2
Breakfast: Sushi Dai
Lunch: Somewhere in Ueno / Yanaka
Dinner: Fuku

Tokyo - Staying in Shibuya
Day 3
Lunch: Sushi Kanesaka*
Dinner: Butagumi or Maisen

Kyoto
Day 4
Dinner: Tempura Ten-yu*

Kyoto
Day 5
Lunch: Omen
Dinner: Kikunoi Roan*

Kyoto
Day 6
Lunch: Tousuiro
Dinner: Kyoto Spoon (or another Izakaya)

Kyoto
Day 7 - Christmas
Lunch: Tenjin-san Market
Dinner:

Takayama
Day 8
Dinner: Ryori ryokan Hanaoka*

Takayama
Day 9
Dinner: Sakana (is there a better option)

Onsen
Day 10
Dinner: Ryokan at Oku-Hida Onsen*

Tokyo – Staying in Shinjuku
Day 11
Dinner:

Tokyo – Staying in Shinjuku
Day 12
Dinner: Les Creations de Narisawa*

Tokyo – Staying in Shinjuku
Day 13 – New Year’s Eve
Dinner:

Tokyo – Staying in Shinjuku
Day 14
Dinner: Ryugin*

Tokyo – Staying in Shinjuku
Day 15
Final Lunch:

* - already have a reservation

Dec 07, 2010
lygamm in Japan

Skiing and Eating

Hi:

My wife and I will be in Japan for two weeks this winter. We'll be in Tokyo for one week and want to go skiing the second week. My wife is more interested in skiing. I'm more interested in eating. Any recommendations on ski resorts / towns with a good food scene.

Thanks

Sep 11, 2010
lygamm in Japan

Persian caterer / Iranian caterer for a wedding

Nazgol.... I'm curious who you ended up using and how they were. I'm having a casual party later this summer and wanted to hire a persian caterer to bring a grill and cook kabobs. Berookim is not available and I'm talking to Bahdor. Any other thoughts or suggestions?

Thanks!

Jul 02, 2009
lygamm in Los Angeles Area