The holidays are just around the corner, and with all the city's bright illuminations and colourful autumn leaves, this is also a time for feasting. This weekend (November 15-17), there are at least six food and drink festivals to satisfy your appetite. Here are our top picks, including a fisherman's fest, a bread extravaganza as well as Japan's largest whisky gathering.
Japan Fisherman's Festival (Nov 14-17)
Fill up on a sumptuous spread of fresh seafood at this popular Hibiya Park festival. Think fresh sashimi and chargrilled crab to uni (sea urchin) pasta and seafood paella – all sourced from local fishermen. It's the kind of food you come to Japan for, right?
Tsukiji Hashigo Zake (Nov 16)
Eat and drink your way around Tsukiji for one night this Saturday as 50 selected restaurants in the area are offering ¥500 and ¥1,000 special meals and drinks. You'll get to try everything from pan-fried gyoza and grilled yakiniku to bowls of ramen and teishoku set meals at reasonable prices. Buy your tickets in advance (¥600) for better savings. Otherwise, you can still get tickets on the day for ¥1,000.
Aoyama Bread Festival (Nov 16-17)
Here's your opportunity to sample baked goods from some of Japan's best bakeries. The festival takes place over at the weekly Farmers' Market @ UNU and will be hosting more than 80 bakeries, cafés and shops selling their best buns, pastries and loaves.
Whisky Festival (Nov 16-17)
Get your fill of single and blended malts at Japan's largest whisky festival. The event is set to feature over 80 booths pouring a mix of whiskies, cocktails and beers. There will also be a good selection of pairing food like cheese and ham. Look out for the cocktail lessons led by world-acclaimed bartenders.
Katsushika Food Festa (Nov 16-17)
Make a beeline for the Katsushika Food Festa in the charming surrounds of Shin-Koiwa Park, where approximately 50 stalls will be serving up a variety of cuisines including Chinese, Thai, and of course, Japanese. The adorable Monchhichi character is the mascot of the event and so you can pick up limited-edition Monchhichi festival merchandise here, too.