Rubia1/5
Photo: Rubia
Chawari Gakugeidaigaku2/5
Photo: ChawariChawari Gakugeidaigaku
Kopikalyan 3/5
Photo: Kopikalyan Kopikalyan
Rubia4/5
Photo: Rubia
ビバコーヒー5/5
Photo: 組橋信太朗

New restaurants, cafés and bars in Tokyo to try this month

Tokyo's best and most exciting new openings, whether you're looking for a meal, coffee, dessert or even a drink after work

By Time Out Tokyo Editors
Advertising

Tokyo is one of the world's greatest food cities. But there's more to explore than just the tried and tested cheap eats, the Michelin-starred eateries and Tsukiji mainstays – no matter how good they are. Go on a food adventure and try out some of these new restaurants, cafés and bars now.

Note: these restaurants/cafés/shops might close early depending on the current Covid-19 measures imposed by the authorities. Please check with the individual outlets for the latest business hours.

RECOMMENDED: The top 10 things you must eat in Tokyo

Hot new openings

Satake
Satake
Photo: Satake

Satake

Restaurants Sushi Higashi-Ginza

Set a little away from Ginza’s hustle and bustle, this sushi restaurant reopened in May after a one-year closure. The sleek wooden façade ornamented with a navy noren (traditional Japanese shop curtain) at the entrance and lit by bamboo lamps is discrete and modern. Inside, a 6m-long white wooden counter, cut from a 250-year-old Yoshino cypress and finished by a Nara shrine carpenter, occupies most of the space. 

The cosy and warm atmosphere is perfect to fully appreciate Chef Takeshi Satake’s exquisite horse mackerel, boiled hamaguri clam and steamed tiger prawn sushi included in the omakase course priced at ¥33,000. There is also a private room with a counter for events and private bookings of up to five people.

The restaurant doesn't have a website, but bookings are available by phone.

Chawari Gakugeidaigaku
Chawari Gakugeidaigaku
Photo: Chawari

Chawari Gakugeidaigaku

Bars and pubs Izakaya Gakugei-Daigaku

Beers and lemon sours are the usual drinks on offer at an izakaya, but Chawari Gakugeidaigaku offers 100 different tea-based cocktails, known as chawari in Japanese. 

There are ten types of teas ranging from matcha and genmaicha, to like Earl Gray and butterfly pea, which will be mixed with your choice of liquor. Each drink costs between ¥400 to ¥600 depending on the combination you choose. If you want to skip out on the alcohol, no problem – the bartender will fix you up a delicious mocktail instead.

Not only will you find a plethora of drink choices here, there’s just as much choice in how you enjoy the venue’s karaage fried chicken. You can choose among ten different cuts of chicken including the thigh, skin and liver, and pick from condiments and flavours like soy sauce, ume plum, curry and wasabi to change it up.

Advertising
Rubia
Rubia
Photo: Rubia

Rubia

Restaurants Mexican Shibuya

Down a hidden alleyway in the heart of Shibuya, Rubia serves its creative modern Mexican cuisine from 8am daily. The venue opened in late 2020, a collaboration between Mexican restaurateur Edo Kobayashi, who is behind a host of Japanese restaurants in Mexico, and Sarasa, owner of Tokyo’s Casa De Sarasa. 

The stylish, relaxed setting is spread over two floors: the first floor is the restaurant, while the second floor is the ‘mixology lounge’ (open from 5pm). The breakfast set meals are a good deal for the calibre of food and location – a salad, soup and three tacos of your choice for ¥1,980. 

The soup base varies seasonally (ours was cauliflower) and is served with bright dots of herb and chilli-infused oils; the tacos are modern, Japanese twists on Mexican classics. We love the taco of juicy lamb barbacoa with red cabbage, and the taco that combines grilled manganji peppers with baby corn and onion-yuzu cream. 

Aside from tacos, you can opt for Flautas Ahogadas – filling of pork or chicken wrapped in tortillas and served in an aromatic mole sauce, or go for a more traditional brekkie with a hardy continental breakfast, or granola with yoghurt and fresh fruit.

ビバコーヒー
ビバコーヒー
Photo: 組橋信太朗

Viva Coffee

Restaurants Cafés Takashimadaira

How do you usually drink your coffee? This coffee shop in Itabashi serves your favourite brew in wine glasses. It’s not as strange as it sounds – just as it does for wine, the glass is said to preserve the taste of the coffee and its shape accentuates the aroma of the brew.

The shop has about six different types of in-house roasted coffee beans with different levels of intensity: Ethiopia (bright fruity flavours), the house Viva Blend (light medium roast with a floral taste), Guatemala (medium roast with sweet, chocolate flavour notes), Kenya (medium deep roast with brightly acidic notes), Mandheling (deep roast with strong bitterness), and even café au lait blend mix.

In addition to regular coffee, the venue also has original drinks, brewing coffee with hot sake instead of still water, or mixing tonic water with iced cold brew. For those on the go, you can always order takeaway or buy some of Viva’s roasted beans at the counter.

Advertising
Koffee Mameya Kakeru
Koffee Mameya Kakeru
Photo: Kaila Imada

Koffee Mameya Kakeru

Restaurants Cafés Kiyosumi

Omotesando’s Koffee Mameya has become a mainstay in Tokyo’s coffee scene, serving up excellent brews while also selling coffee beans from around the world. The only downside of the shop, though beautifully designed, is that there is no seating, so you can’t linger over a cuppa.

Good news: Koffee Mameya has finally given its fans the proper café space they’ve been craving with Koffee Mameya Kakeru, a stylish coffee haven nestled amongst the cool cafés in Kiyosumi-Shirakawa, Tokyo’s self-proclaimed coffee town.

Koffee Mameya Kakeru isn’t your average coffee shop, though. While you can purchase beans and drinks for takeaway up front, the back of the store is reserved for serious coffee drinkers looking to explore and taste different roasts, coffee cocktails and even sweets. 

Kopikalyan
Kopikalyan
Photo: Kopikalyan

Kopikalyan Tokyo

Restaurants Cafés Harajuku

Jakarta’s Kopikalyan has opened its very first overseas branch right here in Tokyo, bringing its home-grown Indonesian coffee beans to Tokyo’s eager caffeine hunters. The café sits on prime real estate in the heart of Harajuku, and boasts a spacious seating area with soft pastel-accented interiors and large windows bringing in plenty of natural light.

The arabica beans are sourced directly from farmers and processed at Kopikalyan's own roastery in Indonesia. At the café, you'll be able to sample similar drinks to those on offer at the original shop in Jakarta, along with non-coffee beverages, snacks and light meals. 

Lattes are served on sleek wooden boards and come with a complimentary slice of pandan sponge cake. Other bites include crisp tempeh fries, honey butter toast and the café’s signature Kalyan coffee jelly. If you find a roast that you enjoy, you can also purchase beans to bring home with you.

Advertising
美味むすび uma
美味むすび uma
美味むすび uma

Bimi Musubi Uma

Restaurants Japanese Ginza

Ditch the convenience store onigiri rice balls for the ones at Bimi Musubi Uma, each made to order and served warm. The standard lunch set menu (¥900) comes with a small bowl of soup curry, two appetisers of the day, housemade pickles and one plain onigiri wrapped in seaweed. For an additional ¥100, you can make that two onigiri, or if you think you can eat three rice balls, just chip in an extra ¥200. 

You can also opt for fillings like tuna mayo, ume shirasu (plum and whitebait), and mentaiko (pollock roe) for an extra ¥50 if you want to change it up.

タコス ショップ 池尻
タコス ショップ 池尻
Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa

Tacos Shop Ikejiri

Restaurants Mexican Ikejiri-Ohashi

Kichijoji’s popular Tacos Shop has opened a second outlet closer to central Tokyo, just a few minutes away from Ikejiriohashi Station. Here you’ll find Mexican tacos being served as early as 8am, with traditional fillings like carnitas, suadero (beef) and shrimp as well as unique flavour combinations like ricotta cheese and passion fruit. Plus, there’s even a vegan-friendly option: maitake mushroom ‘chorizo’ wrapped inside a house-made tortilla.

Tacos start from ¥400 each, but the weekday lunch deal is also a bargain: from 11am-3pm, ¥1,200 gets you two tacos and your choice of salad or soup. A takeout taco box (¥1,000) is also available throughout the day.

But where the store really shines is its breakfast menu. Choose from a range of morning tacos, including grilled cheese and bacon and egg, from ¥300 each, or get the huevos rancheros – a classic Mexican breakfast of eggs and salsa on a tortilla (¥600). The hearty ¥1,800 Good Morning Set gives you a choice of two tacos or huevos rancheros, soup, salad, yogurt and a drink on the side.

Advertising
Yokohama Ichibangai
Yokohama Ichibangai
Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa

Yokohama Nishiguchi Ichibangai

Restaurants Yokohama Station area

If you can’t decide what to eat, visit this yokocho alleyway just minutes away from Yokohama’s main station. The seven izakayas here are all local favourites and the range is unbeatable. There’s Fish and Sake Hanatare serving seafood dishes, Maruki offers some of the best yakisoba in town with thick, chewy noodles and original sauce, plus yakitori from Motsushige, the famous Fukuoka-style motsunabe hotpot at Numata and wagyu yakiniku at Shigekichi

If you’re looking for somewhere to grab a drink and a light meal, we recommend Beef Kitchen, which serves up affordable small plates like beef steak for ¥290. For something more international, Kanbei is stocked with all the Korean staples like bibimbap (¥780), chijimi scallion pancakes (¥680) and samgyeopsal grilled pork belly (¥1,080 for one).

Horiuchi Kajitsuen
Horiuchi Kajitsuen
Photo: Kisa Toyoshima

Horiuchi Kajitsuen

Restaurants Cafés Oshiage

Nara’s famed and long-established fruit shop opened its first café in Tokyo as a follow-up to its small boutique inside Shibuya Scramble. It has plenty of fruit parfaits including chocolate banana (¥1,480) and grapefruit (¥1,530), as well as a Solamachi-exclusive double decker strawberry parfait (from ¥4,300), which comes with two parfaits stacked on top of each other. 

The fruit sandwich (¥1,000) is particularly unique here, using brown bread instead of white, with six kinds of fruit and, of course, a generous layer of whipped cream. If you’re willing to splurge an additional ¥280, go for the premium sandwich, which is packed with a seasonal fruit that changes every few months. There are also plenty of thirst-quenching fruit juices and smoothies on offer, too.

Advertising
伊勢廣
伊勢廣
Photo: Keisuke Tanigawa

Isehiro Kyobashi

Restaurants Kyobashi

Whether at lunch or at dinner, Kyobashi's Isehiro will never let a yakitori-lover down. This long-established yakitori shop in Ginza has been serving skewered meat for over 100 years. Some things have changed in that time – the restaurant recently moved across the street from its original building, upgrading its interior and ventilation system in the process – but the food remains as delicious as ever. 

The lunch bowl (yakitori-don, from ¥1,080) maintains the same high quality as the dinner courses (from ¥4,950), both of which allow visitors to taste several different cuts of chicken, all flavoured differently and showcasing different textures. You can choose anywhere from three to nine skewers, but we recommend the five-skewer bowl (¥1,900), which contains lean sasami breast, chicken thighs, tsukune meatballs, chicken skin and liver. You can also opt for a lunch set menu (¥3,950), which comes with nine different skewers and a side of chicken broth soup.

Conveyor belt hot pot restaurant
Conveyor belt hot pot restaurant
Photo: Hitori Shabu Shabu Ichi

Hitori Shabu Shabu Ichi

Restaurants Japanese Nishi-Shinjuku

Ever had trouble finding a hotpot for one? Now you can order a solo shabu shabu meal and enjoy a plethora of ingredients at Hitori Shabu Shabu Ichi in Shinjuku. You’ll receive a small personal pot with your choice of broth, which include flavours like the restaurant's standard dashi-based broth, mega spicy broth, sukiyaki broth and more. This isn’t your typical hotpot place, though – all the ingredients are delivered to you on a sushi-train-style conveyor belt, so you can grab whatever takes your fancy and get dipping.

There is a wide range of meat on offer, including beef, chicken, pork, lamb and duck which cost around ¥150 to ¥300 per plate. There’s also a veggie medley (¥200) as well as numerous daily side dishes – rice, noodles and even dumplings – which cost just ¥100 per plate.

We recommend going for the all-you-can-eat deal (¥2,500), which allows you access to everything on the menu for 90 minutes. An additional ¥1,500 will get you unlimited alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, too.

Advertising
イート フォー イー
イート フォー イー
イート フォー イー

Eat for E

Restaurants Shibuya

This creepy crawly restaurant specialises in dishes made with insects. That may not sound appealing at first, but we know it’ll be gourmet, considering that the meals at Eat for E are created by Shusaku Toba, owner of Michelin-starred restaurant Sio

The food here is all about sustainability, and each dish is topped with finely ground insect powder or dried insects. Try the gapao rice (¥1,322), salad bowl (¥1,210) or a warm cup of soup (¥330), all of which are high in protein from those dried insects, and wash it down with a side of hoji-kocha tea (¥599) steeped with dried crickets.

Milk Bakery
Milk Bakery
Photo: Operation Factory

Milk Bakery

Restaurants Bakeries Harajuku

Milk is a popular Japanese dessert shop serving sweet treats featuring rich, decadent cream. The bakery has locations in Osaka, Yokohama and Tachikawa and its signature fluffy, cloud-like fresh cream buns (¥380) sell out daily. 

Aside from the famed cream bun, the pie cornet (¥380), vanilla-flavoured fresh cream stuffed inside a cornet made from buttery pastry, cannot be missed. Don’t forget about the maritozzi, sweet milky bread concealing a generous amount of whipped cream , which come in plain (¥390) and strawberry flavours (¥430). The shop is takeout only, but there’s a space next door shared with other venues that you can use if you want to sit down.

Advertising
四川火鍋しゃぶしゃぶ専門店 賢合庄
四川火鍋しゃぶしゃぶ専門店 賢合庄
Photo: Kisa Toyoshima

Shinsen Hinabe Shabushabu Ken Gosho

Restaurants Takadanobaba

Sichuan-style shabu shabu chain restaurant Ken Gosho from China has opened its first location in Japan just outside the hustle and bustle of Takadanobaba station. Pick from tomato, ginger, and red hot spicy soup broths, then add in your choice of ingredients like coriander, chili, spices and oil to create your perfect hot pot.

As for meat, there are the classic pork (¥590) and beef slices (¥690) and even lamb (¥590), but you can add all kinds of more exotic meat to your custom shabu shabu, including duck gizzards (¥520) and pig brains (¥690). There's also a wide selection of veggies including mushrooms, lotus root and chinese cabbage (¥690), as well as deep fried tofu (¥390) and duck blood jelly.

If the hot pot isn’t enough, order some classic side dishes including the mala spare ribs (¥690) and sichuan-style chicken feet (¥490), and maybe a bowl of iced rice dumplings (¥520) topped with fruit for dessert too.

WR
WR
Photo: WR

WR

Restaurants Cafés Meguro

Tucked into the ground floor of a small apartment block at a street corner, coffee shop WR has transformed the awkward space into an asset – somewhat of a sleek, stylish bunker. The industrial-looking concrete walls and floor are combined with wooden tabletops and fresh seasonal flowers for a cool, welcoming vibe. Then there’s the coffee and craft beer, which are both excellent. 

The coffee menu (¥450-¥500) covers the essentials, from crisp and complex cold brew and long black to milky latte and flat white. The coffee here is reminiscent of the styles you get in Australia, which is not surprising considering the managers of WR used to live and work there. If you like the roasts, which come from Haneda-based Swim Roastery, you can purchase bags of the coffee beans here, too. (Just a quick primer: a flat white is espresso topped with steamed milk and microfoam; a long black is like an Americano but less diluted and with the espresso shot added after the hot water, not before.)  

There’s ample seating here, and that’s a good thing since the relaxed environment is perfect for lingering. You’ll find standing tables as well as bench seats inside and out. Oh, there’s also free wifi and electrical points if you feel like changing up your remote work scenery for the day. 

The selection of craft beer on tap (starting from ¥900) changes regularly, with a good mix of homegrown and imported brews.

Advertising
Photo:The Little BAKERY Tokyo
Photo:The Little BAKERY Tokyo
Photo:The Little BAKERY Tokyo

The Little Bakery Tokyo

Restaurants Harajuku

This Western-style bakery in Harajuku has recently moved to a bigger space, just two minutes away from its original location. It now has an eat-in area in the back decorated with  a vintage interior, so you’ll feel like you’ve just stepped into a café in Brooklyn.

You’ll find 30 types of bread and pastries, all freshly baked every morning, including classic chocolate croissants (¥310), cinnamon rolls and loaves of bread (from ¥280), plus special items such as the red bean paste and butter ball sandwich (¥420) and sausage and prosciutto rolls (¥450). Doughnuts from sister shop Good Town Donuts are also in stock, as well as vegan baked goods that are egg and dairy-free.

Those who opt to eat in will have a wider menu to choose from, including new breakfast items like granola and avocado toast, more lunch appropriate brioche sandwiches and even New York-style pizza. We recommend coming here for lunch (11am-2pm daily) and getting a set deal, which comes with a side of salad and your drink of choice.

Aka Ichigo Daifuku
Aka Ichigo Daifuku
Photo: Sisty Co., Ltd

Aka

Shopping Chocolate and sweets Gakugei-Daigaku

You’ll find only one thing at this specialist confectionery near Gakugeidaigaku Station – plump, premium ichigo daifuku. This is a popular Japanese sweet, where a whole fresh strawberry is encased in a ball of sweet bean paste and wrapped in a thin outer layer of chewy mochi.

Aka doesn’t use any additives in its ichigo daifuku and all the ingredients are sourced locally, so expect it to taste better than the ones you get from your local supermarket. There are two or three kinds of ichigo daifuku on offer daily, ranging from about ¥390 to ¥580 a pop depending on the type of strawberry. Plus, only 200 of each kind are made per day, so get there early or call and reserve before heading over.

Advertising
Façade of Lindt Chocolate Boutique & Café Omotesando
Façade of Lindt Chocolate Boutique & Café Omotesando
Photo: Lindt & Sprungli

Lindt Chocolate Boutique & Café Omotesando

Shopping Omotesando

Swiss chocolatier Lindt has opened a shiny new flagship store in Omotesando, introducing visitors to both the brand's history and its chocolate.

Scented with sweet chocolate notes, the showcase store is divided into two areas. The Heritage Area details Lindt’s 175-year history, as well as innovations it pioneered that changed the chocolate industry. Meanwhile, the Lindor Moment Area, exclusively designed for Japan, is dedicated to the iconic, creamy Lindor chocolate balls. 

There’s even a vending machine where you can insert a special Lindt coin, choose your preferred Lindor flavour, and see a chocolate ball slide down the chute. Plus, you’ll see a short-film about the story of the chocolate you chose.

The store also has a café with more than 20 chocolate drinks, which are all available for takeaway, including limited seasonal flavours like Lindt Strong Iced Chocolate Matcha. If you can’t make it to the store in person, take a virtual tour online from June 15.

Still hungry?

Advertising
Menko Ushio
Photo: Kisa Toyoshima

Best ramen in Tokyo

Restaurants Ramen

From old-school noodles and tonkotsu classics to soupless tsukemen and spicy favourites – you'll be bowled over by these ramen

Recommended

    You may also like

      Advertising