Fugu (pufferfish) is one of Japan’s most famous delicacies. If not precisely prepared, the resulting meal could be delicious but deadly. Before being allowed to prepare the fish, chefs must be specially licensed – so you should be safe and in for a real treat.
Tentake, 6-16-6 Tsukiji, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0045, +81 (0)3 3541 3881
This dish of thin-cut buckwheat noodles can be found at food stalls and on menus throughout the city. Ideal as a quick snack or as part of a larger meal, we’d recommend handmade soba with uni (sea urchin), okra and raw onion.
Honmura An, 7-14-18 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0032, +81 (0)3 5772 6657
Originating from Osaka, this dish has become popular nationwide and is one of Japan’s quintessential street foods. It consists of battered dough balls filled with pieces of minced or diced octopus, which are then grilled and brushed with a special takoyaki sauce: a must-try.
Garo, Nishiazabu Kinokuniya Building 1F, 1-12-4 Nishiazabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-0031, +81 (0)3 3470 1171
Though you can pick up a box of sushi from most supermarkets nowadays, the real thing has lost none of its special appeal. You’ll want to seek out some of the city’s most skilled itamaes (sushi chefs), who use the highest-quality fish and rice, to get a taste of the genuine article.
Sushi Mizutani, Juno Building 9F, 8-7-7 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 104-0061, +81 (0)3 3573 5258
This pork-cutlet dish is one of Japan’s most popular meals. Depending on your preference for the cut of pork, there are two main types of tonkatsu: hire (fillet) and rosu (loin). The pork is coated in breadcrumbs, deep-fried and served with various sauces for a simple, yet delicious, repast.
Maisen, 4-8-5 Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001, +81 (0)3 3470 007