Typically, yokocho are ramshackle streets filled with small bars and restaurants. The most popular in Tokyo are Nonbei Yokocho in Shibuya, Omoide Yokocho in Shinjuku, but yokocho have also been a popular theme for some of the town’s new developments. From this relatively new space in Shin-Okubo serving Korean food to this retro food aisle in Yoyogi.
The latest addition to the range of new yokocho in Tokyo East Kotora Komichi at Toranomon. Located in the basement of the Urban Toranomon office building, the 430 m² space houses 12 new restaurants.
the yokocho is decorated with elements resembling traditional Japanese festivals — think colorful umbrellas, lanterns, and windmills — to create a nostalgic and relaxing atmosphere in the usually straight business district.
Admission is free, and beer and highball prices are the same at all 12 restaurants. To get an idea of the food and drink you can enjoy at Kotora Yokocho, check out our four picks below.
By the way Okinawa restaurant Churayoi Shangri-la, go for homemade oden and a refreshing Shikwasa Sour. The drink is made with lots of frozen shikwasa, also known as citrus depressa, a tart green citrus fruit native to Okinawa.
This yakiniku restaurant hails from Sendai in Miyagi Prefecture and serves thinly sliced beef tongue yakiniku. It may not sound delicious, but grilled beef tongue is a local delicacy in Sendai.
Take a seat at the counter and enjoy jingisukan, an oddly-named Japanese dish, where slices of mutton and vegetables are grilled on a slotted domed cast-iron grill right in front of you. Particularly popular in Hokkaido, the name of the dish is the Japanese pronunciation of the name of Mongolian Emperor Genghis Khan.
This izakaya specializes in seafood, and all of its fish and shellfish are caught fresh every morning in the coastal town of Manazuru in Kanagawa Prefecture. To provide the freshest seafood available, the restaurant teams up with local fishing and ama (shellfish collecting divers). You can expect sashimi and a variety of grilled dishes. Accompany your meal with the boutique’s signature sour made from Manazuru citrus fruits like lemons and oranges.
Kotora Yokocho holds a special Noodle Yokocho promotion every day at noon, with all 12 stores offering different noodle dishes at lunchtime.
For more information, see Kotora Yokocho’s official site.
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