To continue from Part 1!
This was back in December, 2014 during our stay in Tokyo.
The danna had work most of first and second week so i braved myself to go out alone with Junya to catch up with some friends!
11. HARBS, Lumine Ikebukuro
RinRin was the first person who came to meet me up all the way at Lumine Ikebukuro! It’s just right across my apartment so it was really easy for me! (If i forget anything we could just go back to my place)
Harb is a chain cafe that serves light brunches and also cakes. They are baby-friendly, however we had to wait about 15 minutes as they only allocate certain seats for guests with strollers (so that it won’t be in the way).
The cafe is comfortably spacious (and you will have to re-adjust your whole set of definition to “space” when it comes to Japan) even with a stroller. There were other diners with babies too so i felt a little more at ease too.
Simple , but really good sandwich.
Cake was hmmmm.
Apparently they are famous for their cream fruit tarts but i really am not too big a fan of sweets.
12. M House, Ebisu
Naoko (ex EMODA) invited me for lunch and we went near her work place. Ebisu is quite far away but still accessible via Yamanote line from Ikebukuro!
Naoko now started her own vintage/select brand called Ameri!
It’s more like a cafe place for people working nearby so there were a lot of OL crowd, but overall good food and nice ambience!
We both had uni (sea urchin) omelette <3
Super creamy <3
Buns were soft and fluffy too!
13. AW Kitchen, Aoyama
My Yakiniku buddy Omatsu san always knows the best in Tokyo. We had a catch up session together with Izu too, at AW Kicthen, an Italian cafe at Aoyama (near Omotesando). Reservation required because it’s really popular!
It turned out that it was another life-changing dining experience lol.
Omatsusan, Izu and JunJun.
So this is the life-changing dish.
It’s Bagna cauda, AW Kicthen’s signature.
Huh. You mean you actually eat these things?
Yes. Everything. (Except the ice. But you may if you insist.) From the stem to leaves to the last tiny petal. Raw.
And then dipped in hot anchovy and garlic sauce. The sauce is rich and flavourful as you can imagine, but what shocked me was how out of the world the greens (and reds and oranges and yellows and purples) tasted like.
The carrot didn’t taste like carrot. Daikon didn’t taste like daikon. The leaves… i mean? You won’t even have considered putting them into your mouth would you?? I ate them, brain exploding.
After this meal, for the rest of my trip in Japan, i kept bugging everyone to go for restaurants that specializes in vegetables (i don’t mean vegetarian, but restaurants that serve good veggie dishes). I wanted to forget about beef and seafood and whatever else just for a while. I just wanted to appreciate all the otherworldly vegetables grown in Japan, before leaving this land. I wanted to be consumed by this natural wholesomeness and give thanks to every morsel of it that nourishes my body. Yes i was that mad.
Anyway. Junya seemed to like it too.
The reason why the vegetables were so amazing is because AW Kitchen supply some of the highest grade vegetables (the menu prices are also not very pocket friendly, just so you know!), and they use these fresh seasonal greens in their daily menu, including their home made pastas.
This is Izu’s lotus root pasta. It just looks so… unimaginable. I didn’t try this but according to Izu it was very very good. And i believed her. Because mine was, too.
Mine was Pasta with grilled chicken and bean sprout. I was expecting beautiful spaghetti topped with succulent chicken grilled to perfection…
Where’s my chicken?
And that mountain of beansprout?
I would have flipped table if it’s in Malaysia lolol. Give me so much chao taukeh want to save cost ah!!!! Summore is burn wan lolol. But the star of this dish is indeed, the chau taukeh. i can’t remember now but it was some super special bean sprout grown exclusively only at this unique mud in a certain local farm (how vague can i be???? IKR lol), and they are of top grade. Maybe the best taukeh you will ever find in this world lolol.
I will never belittle taukeh ever again after this meal.
JunJun couldn’t have it so he was licking my hand.
If you have some spare cash (maybe 5,000 per person for a meal?) and love vegetable (or hate vegetable and want to #challengeaccepted, whichever.), do dine at AW Kicthen.
14. XO Yakiniku
This is on the same day! My Yakiniku buddy booked this Yakiniku restaurant because a friend works there and he could get us an individual room. (It was year end and every other Yakiniku place was having Bounenkai or Year-End Party, so it was impossible to go to all our usual favorites.)
For dinner we are meeting Nicole Abe!!
Nicole is a model and i used to now her when i read Ranzuki! If you used to read Ranzuki too you’ll definitely know her! Her nick name was Nikorun back then.
I am so so happy!! I thought i would have to sacrifice Yakiniku forever until Junya is 18 or something T____T.
But it was still quite a tough dinner because of the smoke. And was really hot and stuffy inside >.<
Sorry Junya T____T
Yakiniku with Junya: Conquered.
15. Anea Cafe, Yoyogi
Lunch date with Nanaco and Omatsusan and Uni. Uni is… their dog.
Anea cafe is pet friendly, which is why we picked this place because i really wanted to meet Uni the Japanese terrier!
Nanaco and Junya
The restaurant is quite small but we were dining on the private loft (this is the view when i looked down) so it was quite okay! Except that it is a smoking restaurant… so i still won’t recommend those with babies 🙁
But if you live in Tokyo and have dogs you can bring them here!
That’s Uni the Nippon terrier.
Gorgonzola pizza with honey
And a cheese risotto i forgot to take picture cuz i was busy videoing it!
Yes it was cooked hot and then poured into a cheese bowl (the entire bowl is cheese with a hole) and mixed with melted cheese wall.
So cheesy T_T
JunJun fell asleep in my arm.
16. Yasaiya Mei , Omotesando Hills
It’s a date with Yuria and i was really craving for more veggies, so we went to Yasaiya Mei in Omotesando Hills, a restaurant specializes in local organic vegetables. It’s a busy restaurant that usually have a line outside. You can bring your baby in but you just have to have the patience to beat the queue. But i was there before lunch time so luckily i got a seat immediately!
Yuria and Junya ❤︎
Bagna cauda again!!! And organic carrot juice.
I still prefer AW Kitchen but this was really good too!
Shared a sukiyaki set with Yuria.
Junya gnawing on a tomato.
17. Maisen, Omotesando
Just a few steps away from NALU/76 Omotesando is Maisen, a famous Tonkatsu restaurant, which is hugeeeeee. I hardly ever see restaurants so big in Omotesando, so it’s definitely family-friendly!
My minced meat Tonkatsu set.
Forgot to take other pictures >.<
A really good Harumonyaki restaurant, although it’s in Shibuya but it’s so tricky to get there even the locals get lost. So it’s best you cab there!
It was NALU/76 staff’s bounenkai (year end party) for 2014, we had to do it after everyone is off work so it was really late. Very sorry to Junya (already past his bed time) but it was an important dinner so i had to bring him along. In his pajamas lol.
RinRin and JunJun
By the way we are having All-Free (alcohol-free beer). It was so good!!! 😀 Thank whoever invented this!!!
Looks like someone’s gonna love beer XD
We improvised a bed for Junya by my side, but it was too bright and noisy and smoky for him to relax T_____T.
Baby who refused to sleep.
After new year and back from Nagasaki, the danna took some time off work so we had some time to eat together again!
If you like ramen and mentaiko, what does it sound like to have ramen dipped in hot mentai sauce???
I’s quite a famous ramen shop (i think featured by TV before) in Ikebukuro!
It’s surprisingly huge for a ramen shop! (Come to think about it it is more like a restaurant) And incredibly clean too!
My ramen in hot mentai dipping sauce.
Hmmm. The danna told me that the review wasn’t so good prior to visiting, but i insisted. Turned out it wasn’t really my cup of tea (bowl of ramen?) because the sauce is quite sweet and you could barely taste the mentaiko (a common complaint in all the reviews).
20. Sukiyaki, Lumine Ikebukuro
(Forgot the exact name of the restaurant)
Sukiyaki because i wanted the veggies and danna wanted the meat!
Comfy couch for a sleeping baby!
21. Yakitori Tori Ina, Hatagaya
The danna loves Yakitori so he searched for the highest rating ones and this is one of them i think!
You can forget about Yakitori if you travel with kids cuz the good ones are usually a small shop with only counter seats where you have to rub shoulder with the person next to you. Unless you go really late when your young baby is sleeping. On you. Like we did XD
Excuse the messy plate. Kawa (Chciken Skin) and Reba (liver).
Our favorite Ginnan (Ginko nuts)
My favorite Shishitou. Damn everything is my favorite 😛
Momo (Chicken thigh). See the pink part? The chicken is lightly grilled and it is still raw inside!
The first time i posted a picture of half-cooked chicken all the people on Instagram told me i was gonna die XD.
I haven’t though, and decided to go full out XD
One more picture, just to gross you out XD
And yes, you eat it just like that.
And no i didn’t die :D.
22. Mutekiya, Ikebukuro
One of the famous ramen shop in Tokyo! With queues going on and on and on.
We got in after about 15 minutes.
My first time!
Was it worth it?
One word: KAO.
It was really kao until cannot X_X. The soup was thick and rich it was almost solid lolol.
I think it would be a hit for Malaysians but for the danna it was just too much.
The danna wears the baby today!
Extreme spicy takana and less-smelly garlic cloves from Aomori lol
My mentaiko and nori gohan. Yuuuuuuum
Danna’s Tamago kake gohan
23. Rakutaro Ghengkis Khan (Mongolian BBQ), Ikebukuro
Out last meal in Tokyo before heading home! It’s All-You-Can-Eat for only 3900 yen i think! Quite worth it!
My little guest
I never liked lamb because of the smell of it. I actually objected when danna suggested this place but he just laughed and said, this is Hokkaido lamb.
True enough, it was the best lamb i’ve had T__T. You win again, Japan.
The danna had to order this Hokkaido Tokachi Beef Toro Don.
“Beef Toro”, like the “Ootoro” the fatty tuna belly, except it is beef. Raw.
It cost 600 yen for one bowl of rice with frozen raw fatty beef on top.
Fatty beef melted on steaming hot rice T_______T.
It was the best rice bowl to ever end a 1-month long journey to Japan. Ever. I couldn’t have asked for a more perfect ending.
That’s about all our dining adventures in Tokyo together with Junya. When we are feeling less adventurous, of course, we do these
Xmas Home Party
And combini tapao.
Hope these two entries help those of you who are considering to travel to Japan with your little one!