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katchan's Reviews

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  • Kenbokke (Indian & South Asian / Hiroo)
  • 2011/12/08
  • Just had lunch with girlfriends. It is definitely a cafe/diner atmosphere. Service was terrible. My girlfriends ordered one of the set curries, I opted to order a la carte (since there was no vegetarian option) and had to be charged for the nan I received. With a set menu, you get a small salad and nan OR rice for ?\900. My meal was ?\2600. I tasted everything, even some of my girlfriend's dishes and found everything pedestrian. I hope their dinner offerings are better than lunch. We all agreed, Indian cravings are better answered at Nirvana Midtown. Even as a vegetarian, I didn't feel shorted at their buffet. Living in a city with amazing food and service, this restaurant was severely disappointing.
  • La Colina (Mexican / Roppongi)
  • 2011/12/13
  • Not very authentic. Food was ok, nothing special. One of my friends is a vegetarian and when they brought her veggie tacos it turned out to be a thin tortilla with shredded lettuce and tomato. That's IT! before ordering our food we wanted to order drinks and asked about different specialty drinks on the menu and none of the waitstaff seemed to know what the drinks tasted like or how they were made. They had a man playing guitar and singing Spanish songs, and it was nice enough when he was at someone else's table. I find when people come over to sing to your table specifically and ask you to wear a big sombrero and then buy a CD they are selling to be a little more than I ask for on a dinner out. There has to be better than this in Tokyo.
  • Shakey's (American / Harajuku)
  • 2011/12/13
  • Let me first say I thought the pizza was fine... when we finally got it. The food is standard pizza/pub fare but the fatal flaw in this restaurant is in the horrible service. I swear, they must still be waiting for the dough to rise. If you are desperate for a pizza fix and have a LOT of time to kill, go for it.
  • Lauderdale (American / Roppongi)
  • 2012/09/30
  • Who: 1)10-year-old boy 2)Girlfriend & Me (A couple of chic chicks)
    When: 1)Sunday Brunch 2)Wednesday Lunch
    Wear: Roppongi Hills Casual
    Why: Her idea

    1)I've been to Lauderdale before with my son for brunch. Whenever someone recommends Lauderdale, I find that person is usually a round-eye. No offense. This place is definitely a gaijin hot spot. Fantastic brunchYou can get a good brunch here. I always equate brunch with a platter full of food, so in that respect brunch was a little disappointing but probably better for me. What wasn't disappointing were the croissants. Sooo yummy. If you are living in the area and need a brunch fix, head over. You'll definitely see people you know.

    2)Next trip, My girlfriend and myself. We got there at 11:30am and were asked if we had a reservation! I must admit I was very surprised to see the number of people eating already. Luckily, they were able to squeeze us in. Make reservations or get there early if you are dying to eat there. The other thing that annoyed us was we were both thinking about getting the salad set, and wouldn't you know? the salad is already out of stock....Hmmmm... Luckily, I was torn between that and the falafel pockets. My meal was fine. The set came with a pumpkin soup. I know the Japanese are supposed to have these extra sensitive delicate tastebuds, but I'm Korean, so when I order soup, coffee, practically any type of food in general, I expect it to be HOT. My falafel was yummy. Bread was soft and the flavors mixed well together. It was a little off-putting to be in the middle of our main course when we saw salads rolling out of the kitchen. Made me wonder if they were just reserving them for people with reservations or what, but I didn't appreciate it. Either way. Not nice.

    Verdict: This city spoils you with its food and service and certainly creates a higher standard for a person. With the number of fantastic restaurants and cafes available in Tokyo, there are better options.
  • Garden Fresh (Vegetarian & Healthy / Hiroo)
  • 2012/09/29
  • Who: 3 Girlfriends and Me!
    When: Thursday Lunch
    Wear: Nishi-Azabu Casual
    Why: Brand new and looked healthy

    So I walk by this place everyday and it's one of those locations where you blink and suddenly there's a new business. Well, the other day I walked by and suddenly I see a vegetable & fruit boutique. If you are familiar with the small grocery stands like Bikkuri, it's kind of the cleaned up, Gaijin-friendly version of that. I also noticed a couple tables (and I mean that literally.... 2) and a sectional with a coffee table. They actually serve food. Light fare like pasta of the day and salads. If I'm not mistaken, you can request more salad if you like. When I went, 3 of the 4 of us ordered the salad and I think we were all wishing we had ordered the pasta set when we saw our one friend get her meal. The set includes tea, but no coffee. Super Healthy! Lunch set 1000 yen.

    I would say the food is pretty standard. I left craving dessert and feeling like I had earned it.

    The high point of this place is the produce. It's beautifully presented, but not in that crazy Food Show kind of way. More like a Fresh Market (US Chain). The owner is very nice. They have an amazing selection of dried fruit (which I am addicted to).

    The staff doesn't speak English too good (on purpose), BUT! for all the Radiation Moms out there, all the produce is labeled with Locations in ENGRISH. ;)

    Verdict: Definitely go there for the store. Great location, prices are not Insane even for Nishi-Azabu, high quality. Stuff your face somewhere else.

  • Moti: Roppongi (Curry / Roppongi)
  • 2012/09/01
  • Who: Girlfriends & Me
    When: Thursday Lunch
    Wear: Casual- Casual Business
    Why: My girlfriend Nghi recommended it for our weekly lunch date.

    If you check through my reviews, you'll see, I'm a fan of Indian, and evidently their restaurants. I pretty much already have my default choices, but having just returned from the States, my girlfriends and I were itching to catch up and Nghi had tried Moti and she and her husband are hooked. We try a lot of food together so I'm always up for trying anything with her. I have actually been to Moti before in another life. I've been wanting to see if it is as I remembered. The interior is a little dark, but not so dark that one is suspicious of ingredients. It's dark in that Middle Eastern Tent kind of way. The service is mediocre. We were having to flag the waiter for refills on our water. The lunch sets are pretty good. I like that they include your option of beverages and you can have a lassi. You can select a curry and it will come out with a HUGE piece of nan or bowl of rice, some side crunchy vegetables. The nan is good. Nghi thinks it's the best, but I still think Priya in Hiroo has better nan although this nan may be healthier.

    I ordered the healthy set which is a selection of 3 curries (see photo). They were all good, but what doesn't taste good when it's made from gee? My girlfriends ordered the chicken curry set and the other vegetable curry set. Everyone ate heartily. None of us were able to finish our nans which is saying something because we all have bug appetites.

    The place filled up quickly. If you're in the neighborhood and looking for an Indian fix, go for it. It isn't spectacular but for being around as long as it has been, it must be dependable and consistent.
  • Tsukiji Tama-sushi: Ginza (Sushi / Ginza)
  • 2012/04/01
  • When: Friday night around 6:45pm
    Who: My Husband and 10 year old son
    Wear: Casual, business
    Why: It's near the station and near Hakuhinkan and Tsukiji

    Verdict: If I was craving sushi I might visit.
    I was curious to try the All-You-Can eat sushi. I figured it's near Tsukiji, so it has to be realatively decent. My son is obsessed with a video game which can only be played at Hakuhinkan so we decided to let him run down the street and play while we hunkered down in the waiting chairs. We got there around 6:45. There was already a line to the wall. We were evidently the end of the lookers because no one really came after us to wait. If you come anytime after 7:30pm you shouldn't have to wait too long. Service was friendly. The pricing is a little weird because they charge you in pairs like the previous reviewer mentioned. They charged 2100 yen for our son. They have an English menu available. The service can be a little slow, however, with the chef being usually within shouting distance from you at the counter, you can get your order started. Like any "All-you-can-eat" places, go with an appetite.

    I found the actual aesthetic of the nigiri to be mediocre, but the quality of the sushi was fine. This place didn't wow me, but I don't regret going.
  • Island Veggie: Hiroo (Vegetarian & Healthy / Hiroo)
  • 2012/02/04
  • Who: Myself & Girlfriend who is newly vegetarian
    When: Lunch
    Wear: Casual
    Why: Off the beaten path, looked interesting, trying to be healthy

    Verdict: I might go back. If you are in the area and feeling like "eating healthy" good choice

    Considering the fact that we have tried Eat More Greens and Yasaiya Mei, Nghi and I both agreed this was kind of average. You get a nice helping of brown rice if you ask for it. We both opted for the faux meat set and I got the "Nuggets", but I should have known better. I don't like pretenders and that includes food. The texture is never right for me. Island Veggie makes a god attempt at it and I didn't feel like it was a wasted lunch, but if I want this kind of food, I know of 2 better places.

    Really small space, so don't go in there after shopping all afternoon. The nice thing they'll do is take your name and nnumber and call you if a table opens up.
  • Monsoon Cafe: Daikanyama (Thai / Nakameguro)
  • 2012/01/19
  • Who: Me and 6 other girlfriends
    When: Lunch
    Wear: Business-casual
    What: We all tried the lunch set, myself I had the pad thai.

    Verdict: For 1000 yen not bad.

    This review is for the Monsoon located in Azabu Juban near exit 7 from the station. The site doesn't allow for "adding businesses" and no one has answered my email for help doing this.

    This restaurant is very conveniently located. The moment you step onto the elevator there is kind of an old feeling about it. Not necessarily bad, more like old Kung fu movie. When I stepped out I was greeted by the host and let him know I had made a reservation. He did not have it. I will let you all know, I made the reservation through their website AND received a confirmation which I showed him, but alas, somehow it did not exist. Luckily, it wasn't a problem and they had a big enough table to spare.

    Normally, I don't believe in "fusion" and I don't believe in restaurants that promise an "eclectic" menu. I like restaurants that tout 1 thing and do it really well, but a friend recommended the place so I thought we would give it a shot. The food was fine. Nothing special. You order the entree and for a little extra you can add a salad/drink/dessert buffet. It was pretty self-serve and basic. The whole lunch set was 1000 yen so that puts it all in perspective.
  • Roti (American / Roppongi)
  • 2012/09/06
  • Who: Me and 4 other girlfriends
    When: Thursday Lunch
    Wear: Nice to Roppongi Hills Casual
    Why: Lunch date

    Nico provided really nice pictures so I didn't bother uploading any. I ended up ordering the cajun Swordfish burger. It came with a side of fries. The fries were "Meh..." but the burger was fantastic! Lots of red onion (which I shouldn't eat but did anyhow). I was so pleased to find just right level of spiciness in the burger. The bread was fine. My friends had salads and other "set" options and they all commented that their food was good.

    I didn't understand the name Roti because it sounds so Indian to me, but then someone said it might be a derivation of "Rotisserie" and then I got it.

    For standard American fusion food, I definitely recommend this place. Will probably try to check it out for Brunch given Nico's review. The only annoying was feeling like I was being nickel and yen'd to death. The "set" only included the main. To get a soup, or dessert, or coffee even cost extra. Most sets were 1000-1200 yen. Staff was nice.

    Nothing to regret here. Would definitely recommend and revisit.
  • Shinagawa Aquarium (Aquariums / Gotanda)
  • 2012/04/01
  • Who: My girlfriend and 2 4th Grade boys
    When: Saturday around 12:00
    Wear: Casual comfortable clothes and shoes you don't mind getting wet.
    Why: It was a rainy windy day

    Verdict: I recommend going

    The previous reviewers have gone into more details, so I will just mention a few things. get the 2000 yen ticket for 4 rides. Especially if you have older kids. We ended up doing this twice for each boy. They actually have one of those pirateboat rides inside the complex. The shows are terrific. If you sit within the first 3 rows, I would suggest purchasing a plastic poncho for 100yen from concessions. The shows are really terrific. Even though we were there on a Saturday afternoon it wasn't so crowded. You should go at least once.
  • Nanxiang Steamed Bun Restaurant (Chinese / Roppongi)
  • 2012/02/06
  • Who: 10 Year old boy and Myself
    When: Saturday Lunch
    Wear: Casual/ Business
    Why: It's my son's favorite restaurant for dumplings
    Verdict: Will be going back

    Living near Roppongi Hills is a good and bad thing. When you first move here, you are lured into dining at the Hills quite often because it's just convenient. After about 3 restaurants I started feeling like everything in the Hills tasted the same no matter what the cuisine. I can't put my finger on exactl why, it just was my feeling and so I took a break from it and started having the policy of eating out in the neighborhoods more and I can't say I am sorry. This restaurant, I must admit is one that we have continued to visit. As stated my son LOVES the soup dumplings. The lunch set is nice, perhaps not as filling as one might like. I agree with Dominic that the dumplings are the star here. Myself being flexitarian, I do not order the pork dumplings but they have "vegetable" dumplings which are fine, but are unfortunately steamed bread and not the wonderful wonton skin of the pork dumpling. I have tried their other dishes and they are heavy-handed with the salt, but as a lay diner, sometimes I just have to turn the other cheek and succumb to it. It is a very popular place so don't be surprised if there is a wait. Just know that it does go quickly.

    Just one more note, I love walking in and seeing the chefs preparing all the dumplings fresh. It's really fantastic to watch. So fresh!
  • Fukuzushi (Sushi / Roppongi)
  • 2012/10/09
  • Who: Double Date Night
    When: Saturday Night
    Wear: Roppongi weeknight. There is a sign that reads: No sleeveless for men.
    Why: Craving sushi

    I love how this place is set back in almost a warehouse-type district. It is behind the Hard Rock and trust me, you would be better off skipping HR and just continuing on back to Fukuzushi. They offered course menu as well as ala cart. We all ordered the Ronji Set. The pictures show the courses for 4 persons consolidated onto platters for sharing. All the sashimi and nigiri was reall fresh. The scallop was delicate and sweet. I love miso that stares back at you. The atmosphere itself is a little dated/tired. I was surprised as the night went on that so many foreigners were here. The service was attentive.

    After finishing the courses, they request that you move to the lounge area to have your dessert and coffee/tea.

    I would definitely go back and recommend. The price is excellent as well as the quality of fish.
  • Tinun: Aoyama (Thai / Omotesando, Aoyama)
  • 2012/09/21
  • Who: Myself and Girlfriends
    When: Friday Lunch
    Wear: Casual or Tourist-y
    Why: Friend's choice & who doesn't like Thai food?

    I passed this place the first time I looked for it. It is sort of lost in it's own advertisement and it is one of those restaurants where the signs are on the street while the restaurant itself is "Chika Ikai" or 1 floor down. I always like walking down into restaurants because it makes me feel like I'm going somewhere secret. It's nice to see the kitchen through the glass as you get to the bottom. Beware of steps as you walk through.

    The restaurant is surprisingly open considering you are in a basement. Staff is helpful and nice. Get there by noon because shortly after we arrived there was a long line up the stairs to the street. There is a terrific side items buffet. I would suggest checking that out before ordering so you aren't being redundant.

    The food was good basement food. I would definitely recommend this place for anyone looking for a Thai fix. I definitely plan to return.
  • Suji's (American / Azabu-juban)
  • 2012/08/20
  • Who: Myself, Gentleman, & 10 year old boy
    When: Sunday Brunch
    Wear: Casual
    Why: I wanted Brunch: Plain & Simple

    I don't know where those last few reviewers were eating because I was just there and the food and service were terrific. The last "New York Brunch" I ate was at Bubby's in Tokyo and it was really over the top and a little too trendy for me. If I am doing brunch, I'm either in church clothes with my parents, or I'm recovering from something. This weekend found me still in the throes of bad jet lag so Sunday morning I felt like I wanted some comfort food.

    We got there around noon and there was no wait.I ordered the North Pacific Benedict and the boy ordered fish and chips. My only gripe is the dishes didn't all come out together, but I have found this to be the case with other Japanese restaurants so I am inclined to think this is a cultural thing. They just bring out food as soon as it's ready and expect you to dig in. Ironically, my eggs benedict and the other eggs benedict came out about 5 minutes before the fish and chips, but I'm a sucker for setting an example so I waited for my son to be served. The food was hearty, and huge in portion. I'm a little embarassed to admit we cleared our plates like the good gaijin. No shame people. Just shovel. I'm not going to say this is a Michelin experience, but if you are looking for a good breakfast in a cozy environment I'd definitely try Suji's. I know I'll be back to try some other dishes.

    PS: I don't remember being alarmed at the prices, but then again, I didn't pick up the bill. I passed a sign for their lunch set and it was advertised as 1000 yen for 3 courses, so nothing crazy there. I think the plates came out to 1500-1800 yen a plate. I wanted to order more, but thank goodness someone stopped me.
  • Natural House (Organic Food / Omotesando, Aoyama)
  • 2012/04/15
  • I'm only adding my rating for Natural house because it has been awhile and I was just there this week. This place is the Japanese version of Whole Foods and has a wonderful feel to it. Their prepared foods section is terrific and prices were not any crazier than Meidiya or other such supermarkets. I was expecting higher. There is an area if you feel like eating in the shop towards the back and adjacent to the front entry there is a juice bar. If you are in search of all things organic, definitely make this one of your stops.
  • Crayon House (Organic Food / Omotesando, Aoyama)
  • 2012/04/15
  • Who: My Girlfriend & Myself
    When: Thursday Lunch
    Wear: Casual
    Why: Her idea, it's "organic" / veggie friendly

    Verdict: Would definitely recommend and revisit

    It was a beautiful day and I was in the mood for trying something new. My girlfriend and her husband are new vegetarian/juicing/organic enthusiasts and she had found this place and asked that I check it out with her. The restaurant is conveniently located just a couple blocks from the Omotesando station. the restaurant is located below street level, but still manages to be incredibly open and airy. I read the last review and I would not consider the store's selection as small or inadequate. The buffet itself was very tasty and comprehensive. They had some dessert options that you would have to pay separately for and the slices looked huge. I probably wouldn't come here for dinner, but it is definitely a terrific place for lunch if you feel like stuffing your face full of healthiness.
  • Kan Nichi Kan - Azabu (Yakiniku / Azabu-juban)
  • 2012/02/07
  • Who: 4 ex-pat girlfriends (2 Japanese, 1 Asian-Australian, 1 Taiwanese-French) and Me!
    When: Friday Lunch
    Wear: Business casual / nice casual and nice socks because you will probably have to take off shoes.
    Why: Felt like getting some Korean food
    Verdict: I'd go again

    I have often expressed this view about Japanese forays into outside cuisines. I feel like the Japanese do a lot of things really well. That being said, I don't feel like they do poor people food aka soul (Seoul) food well. However, my friend Alexandra and Fox News would argue that there are weathier people in Korea nowadays. But I digress.

    The restaurant is located on a 2nd floor. It is in a convenient location in Azabu Juban. Very clean and respectable on the inside. They have a very affordable lunch set. Some of my girlfriends opted for the bulgogi, myself and another friend opted for the fish and someone else ordered the stone bowl bi bim bop (one of my favorites). All the food was beautifully prepared. Plates were clean by the time we were finished. I still haven't found a place that comes close to my place Buford Hwy, Atlanta, Georgia, but this place was good and worth trying. I would put this in the "white-tablecloth Korean" category. My girlfriend said it is great for dinner and their naeng-myun (cold buckwheat noodle dish with vinegary broth) is wonderful. Will have to try that when weather gets warmer.
  • Tokyo Disney Sea (Amusement Parks / Kinshicho)
  • 2012/01/01
  • When: December 30th 2011
    Who: Me, my 10 year old son, his friend and his mom.
    Wear: Lots of warm clothing including hats, mittens, scarf. Bring electronic devices for distraction.
    Why: It is winter holiday and we had a free day. We thought the crowds might be smaller due to impending New Year's tradition preparations.
    Verdict: We were terribly wrong.

    Overall I will say, if you haven't been go. The prices are higher than indicated and I have uploaded a picture of the actual ticket window. IF you go this time of year, dress warmly. It was freezing and my friend and I were VERY tempted to purchase a plush character hat. BTW Disney Sea should be Disney See because the people watching is incredible. I have never seen so many grown mend and women walking around in character hats and earmuffs and carrying teddy bears. You should also make an effort to catch shows on the lake. The Theatrical shows are all in Japanese so that might be tedious, but the day and evening shows on the lake are spectacular. Disney Sea is known for catering more for adults and older kids than DisneyLand. I think this is a fair call.

    We were there from 10am to 10pm and got in 3 rides (whirlpool, 20,000 leagues, Temple of Doom), 1 scavenger hunt, 2 shows and lunch and dinner. The day went quickly. The rides can be anywhere from 50-90 minute wait and if you get a fast pass, you are only allowed 1 every 2 hours.

    FYI: those plastic buckets dangling around everyone's necks are for popcorn refills. :)
  • Udon Kurosawa (Udon / Roppongi)
  • 2011/12/29
  • Just had lunch here today with girlfriend and boys. As you can see, everyone was enjoying their bowl. Staff is not so English friendly, but the menus are and the food is wonderful. It was a perfect meal on a cold winter day. It's a small popular establishment, so go on the early side to get a seat. Offer vegetarian options too which is nice. I had the deep-fried tofu udon and my son had the duck udon. One disappointment was the lack of tempura option.I would go back.
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