May 9, 2016

Code Name Mixology Laboratory (Tokyo)

by Kayoko Akabori

Mr. Shuzo Nagumo is a mad scientist behind the bar. With a twinkle in his eye and a firm stance when shaking, he has started a cocktail revolution in Tokyo that is a great departure from the cocktail bars we’ve become used to in Japan. That is: bartenders in tuxedos, gentle yet silent, each movement exacting and no detail missed. […]

April 4, 2016

Take-Chan Niboshi Ramen in Tokyo

by Kayoko Akabori

The best bowl of ramen we ate on our last trip to Japan was in the Chofu neighborhood of Tokyo. We were on our way for some R+R at an onsen nearby and stopped by Take-chan, which specializes in broth made with niboshi (dried infant sardine). It was highly rated on Tabelog, so we wanted to try it. Plus, […]

March 28, 2016

Yona Yona Beer Works in Tokyo

by Kayoko Akabori

Yoko and I were so excited to find that one of Yoho Brewery’s tap rooms in Tokyo was right in our hotel! We waited until our very last night in the city to go in for a beer, and looking back, I wish we wouldn’t have. Yona Yona Beer Works was so great — we […]

January 15, 2016

Dream of Sushi with Jiro Gastronomy

by Umami Mart Staff

A video posted by Umami Mart (@umamimart) on Jan 15, 2016 at 12:38pm PST  You’ve probably seen Jiro Dreams of Sushi and are dreaming of the day you’ll eat at Sukiyabashi Jiro in Tokyo. Getting a reservation at this 10-seat, 3-Michelin star restaurant run by 90-year old Jiro Ono, who some consider the world’s greatest […]

January 13, 2016

Tokyo JUNKtion: Oreno Dashi in Akasaka

by Yoko Kumano

For the past few years, I’ve been hoping to get into an Oreno restaurant in Tokyo. Established in 2011, their mission is two-fold: 1. Serve dishes prepared by Michelin-starred class chef, at one-third the price you would pay in a high-end restaurant; 2. Food costs make up 60% of expenses. To make up for the […]

January 11, 2016

Postcard from Tokyo: Tis the Season for Shirako

by Kayoko Akabori

It’s become Yoko and my tradition to stop into Tsukiji Sushiko, a popular chain that is littered all around Tokyo, serving superb sushi at a nominal pricepoint. We usually visit Japan in the winter so we are lucky to always get shirako, or better known here on the blog as fish jizz. That’s right, these are sperm […]

June 18, 2015

Yakitori Bunraku in Tokyo

by Kayoko Akabori

A good friend of mine is in Tokyo right now and he wanted a shortlist of places to eat. As a tourist, you usually do want to be armed with a list from someone you know of where to dine while traveling. You don’t want to get stuck in an awful, overpriced restaurant that caters […]

May 7, 2015

Tokyo JUNKtion: Entering the Womb at Bar Caesarean

by Yoko Kumano

The name Caesarean derives from all things related to Caesar, the Roman general whose actions led to the rise of the Roman Empire. It does not derive from the caesarean section, which might have been more fitting, given that entering the bar felt like entering an altered womb-reality à la David Lynch. To go into […]

April 2, 2015

Akio Watanabe of Bar EST! (Tokyo)

by Kayoko Akabori

Looking back on our trip to Japan in February, the most memorable cocktail was at Bar EST!. A short distance from the Yushima train station in Tokyo, EST! is a dark, tavernous space filled with men drinking a scotch on the rocks and smoking cigarettes. At the helm is Akio Watanabe, “master” aka owner of Bar […]

March 5, 2015

Togarashi Ginger Highball at Jicca (Tokyo)

by Kayoko Akabori

As you know by now, Tori-chan is a dear friend of ours who opened Jicca, a restaurant and wine bar in the Hatagaya neighborhood in Tokyo nearly two years ago. She is a native of Minami-soma in Fukushima prefecture; a town that was severely affected after the earthquake in 2011. She was in Tokyo at […]