{  Dougenzaka Kanamori — 道玄坂金森  }

Dougenzaka Kanamori - 道玄坂 金森
Dougenzaka Kanamori - 道玄坂 金森
Dougenzaka Kanamori - 道玄坂 金森

Go up Dougenzaka in Shibuya and you’ll find a small Japanese restaurant named Dougenzaka Kanamori. They serve traditional Japanese dishes and they’re famous for their “Karatsu-don” which they only have a limited number of per day. Karatsudon is basically like a refined fisherman’s dish. It’s made up of chopped tuna, mackerel, salmon, and some other ingredients which are lightly flavored with soy sauce on top of sushi rice.

I’ve been wanting to come here for a while and finally got to check it out. My friend and I both ordered the Karatsudon (1300yen) and we were very satisfied with both the flavoring and the portion size. As you eat the donburi, there are little surprises such as ginger pieces and wasabi which all went very well together. The side dishes such as the dashimaki-tamago complemented the main dish as well.

The first floor is counter seating only and the second floor (which we ate at) were private booths. It seemed like there was more seating on the third floor as well.

It’s hard to find an affordable, nice, authentic Japanese restaurant in Shibuya so this is a good one to try if you’re searching for something Japanese in the area.

PS: Here’s a list of some of their lunch options:
Karatsudon (唐津丼 ) – 1300yen
Nikujyaga Teishoku (金森の肉じゃが定食) – 1300yen
Grilled Fish Teishoku (焼魚定食) – fish changes daily – 1300yen
Boiled fish (煮魚定食) – fish changes daily – 1300yen

Address // 1-17-4, Dougenzaka, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan (map)
Phone Number // 03-5456-1367
Website // http://dogenzaka-kanamori.jimdo.com/

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{  Weekend Garage Tokyo  }

Weekend Garage Tokyo
Weekend Garage Tokyo
Weekend Garage Tokyo
Weekend Garage Tokyo
Weekend Garage Tokyo

Weekend Garage Tokyo is a great new hang out spot which just opened in the middle of Ebisu, Daikanyama, and Shibuya. It’s roughly 10mins walking distance from any of the three stations located right next to the Yamanote train line tracks. Perhaps due to the somewhat random location, this cafe has a nice spacious area with vaulted ceilings and plenty of outdoor seating.

The name says it all, Weekend Garage Tokyo, is literally like a garage full of fun toys. It has bicycles, surf boards, a DJ booth, interesting art and it’s just a fun spot with a great vibe. Even better, the food lives up to the level of the decor. Been here a few times already with friends and pictured above are a few of the dishes we ordered: The grilled plate of the day “Mexican Pork Grill with Mango Sauce”(1200yen), “Hamburg plate”(1200yen), and the “Hot Sandwich of the day”(900yen). All the dishes include a large drink (a choice of coffee, tea,  homemade lemonade, ginger ale, coke or grapefruit juice). Everything I’ve tasted here has been great except on one occasion the bread they used for the hot sandwiches was really hard from being over toasted.

It’s nice that the inside seats are all non-smoking but you can smoke if you sit in any of the outdoor seats. Add up the open kitchen + good food + decor/ambiance + service + cost and I think you’ll agree that this place is a new hip hidden spot in town.

Address // 1-1, Daikanyamacho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan (map)
Phone Number // 03-5428-5751
Website // http://weekendgaragetokyo.jp/

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{  Kuumba du Falafel  }

Kuumba du Falafel
Kuumba du Falafel
Kuumba du Falafel
Kuumba du Falafel

I found a delicious falafel place! I’m not an expert on this style of food by any means but I really enjoyed it.

The restaurant has no signage and is in a random location, so you would never know what this place is from the outside. Kuumba du Falafel is a modern and cozy (only 8 counter seats) cafe with some really nice touches. I liked their ceramic white plates, choice of music, and the easy going atmosphere with lots of fresh veggies.

We ordered the ‘lunch special’ which includes a half falafel sandwich + lentil soup for 1000yen and the ‘full falafel sandwich’ for 1200yen. It’s hard to tell from the photo, but it was a significant difference in size. The half size is still pretty big and filling but since it’s a lot of veggies, if you are hungry, I would go for the full size. Everything was so good, including the lentil soup. I was impressed and I also overheard how yummy the falafel sandwiches were from other guests dinning there too ;) I will be coming back to try the falafel plate next time.

The counter space has lots of dried fruits and nuts which you can purchase to go as well.

Address // 23-1, Shinsencho, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan (map)
Phone Number // 03-6416-8396
Website // n/a

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{  Sadaharu Aoki – Hikarie ShinQ店  }

Patisserie Sadaharu Aoki Paris Shibuya Hikarie ShinQs店
Patisserie Sadaharu Aoki Paris Shibuya Hikarie ShinQs店
Patisserie Sadaharu Aoki Paris Shibuya Hikarie ShinQs店
Patisserie Sadaharu Aoki Paris Shibuya Hikarie ShinQs店

Sadaharu Aoki is known as one of the Top 3 pastry chefs in Japan. He is based in Paris but has a few store locations in Japan and one of them is inside of Shibuya Hikarie.

Ever since Hikarie opened in April of 2012, Sadaharu Aoki’s “Tokyo Yaki Macaron Chocolat” has been the most sold dessert inside of Hikarie ShinQ’s sweets floor. People stand in long lines to purchase this limited edition item since the “Tokyo Yaki Macaron” is only sold at the Hikarie ShinQ location.

Last year they sold the “Tokyo Yaki Macaron Chocolat”(381yen) which had a chocolate macaron on the inside covered by a matcha cake on the outside.
This year, it’s reversed, selling the “Tokyo Yaki Macaron Matcha”(381yen) which has a matcha macaron on the inside covered by a chocolate cake on the outside.

I was expecting it to be uber sweet but it wasn’t as sweet as I expected. Give this popular item a try if you’re near by Shibuya Hikarie. Since the initial buzz has died down a bit, you probably won’t have to wait in a line anymore which is nice.

2012年4月オープンから一年間にわたり渋谷ヒカリエで最も売れた大ヒット商品。青木定治氏の「東京焼きマカロンショコラ」(381円)をいただきました。最近は列もなくなり(短くなり)買いやすくなりました!渋谷ヒカリエ ShinQs店限定の商品です。

Address // Hikarie ShinQs B2F, 2-21-1, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan (map)
Phone Number // 03-6434-1809
Website // http://www.sadaharuaoki.jp/

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{  Açaí Cafe  }

Açaí Cafe
Açaí Cafe
Açaí Cafe

Have you heard of Açaí? It’s a berry from Brazil that is a dark colored fruit and is known to be rich in antioxidants and fiber. It’s a super food that has many health benefits and has become popular here in Japan.

Açaí Cafe happens to be located inside of Shibuya Hikarie’s ShinQ B3F location and there’s always someone picking up a drink or snacking on their Acai Bowls (which you can eat there). Since this was my first time trying Açaí, I didn’t know what to expect, but I’d have to say it’s not bad at all. It feels like blackberry + blueberry combined and although the color is not so appetizing, the Açaí Banana juice was easy to drink and it felt good for the body.

Most drinks are: Regular size 450yen, Large size 550yen. When you get a drink, you can add the waffle bowl for only 300yen extra (instead of paying the full 450yen) so we decided to try that as well. I’d have to say the waffle bowl was nothing exciting. If you want the full experience, I would go for the Acai Bowl for 570yen or the Acai Special Bowl which comes with more fruit for 670yen.

If you’re feeling like you need to detox, or lacking in antioxidants and fiber, grab your quick fix of Açaí at Hikarie.

Address // Hikarie B3F, 2-21-1, Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan (map)
Phone Number // 03-6434-1875
Website // http://www.frutafruta.com/acaicafe/

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