Five stew champs on Hoppy Street
Although not technically located on Hoppy Street, this small shop easily rates as the best stew joint in the neighbourhood. The beef stew is seasoned in the old Edo style with a kicking sweet-and-sour sauce, and the contents include supple beef tendons, richly seasoned 'devil's tongue' (konyaku), mildly sweet onions, and tofu. These simple ingredients produce a rich, flavourful dish that'll have you coming back for seconds. They even do take-out, allowing you to sample the greatness at home, perhaps combined with a nice bottle of red wine.
Tanuki is located in a narrow corner of Hoppy Street and is famed for its beef tendon stew, cooked simply in soy sauce for a down-to-earth, unfussy taste. The tendons are parboiled slowly to give them a distinctive, chewy texture, going perfectly with the konyaku yam cakes. The meat here contains very little fat, making Tanuki's dishes perfect for those who prefer a lighter snack with their drink. Locals like to ask for a raw egg served over rice to go with the stew – try it if you dare.
Koji, a perennially popular joint that's hosted its share of TV crews and other media, sits smack-dab in the middle of Hoppy Street. Very few customers come here for anything else than the stew – a rich, hearty concoction complete with juicy beef tendons and chewy konyaku yam cakes.
Run by Tsukushi, a popular monja joint, this eatery is a relative newcomer to Hoppy Street. Popular items include the beef tendons seasoned in soy sauce, salted beef giblets, and miso-steeped pork giblets – try the three-dish stew sampler (¥950) for a bit of each, yielding a delicious combo of tastes and textures.
Sitting pretty in the middle of Stew Street, Suzuyoshi's main draws are stews and yakitori chicken. Order the Japanese-style beef giblet stew for a bowl of tenderly stewed meat in a miso-based, aromatic garlic broth. We also recommend the nice and spicy beef tendon stew.