We often see the phrase, “best places to eat” in travel media. We like rankings. An as a tourist, they work as a kind of assurance to avoid unpleasant experiences during your precious, limited time. We understand this. Here at Cooking Sun, we are constantly asked what we think are the “best” restaurants in Japan.
However, when it comes to traveling in Japan, it seems to me that the phrase ‘best places to eat’ is much less relevant. Why? It’s simple. It’s because the general standard for food is high. If you ask local people which restaurants are the best, they may have an answer for you, but in most cases, they will just say ‘hmm, there are many, and any restaurant is pretty good”.
I often suggest to our customers to pick a restaurant while walking around and just give it a try! If the restaurant looks decent, most likely the quality is good. You may enjoy interacting with the restaurant staff and other diners because they are not used to meeting foreign travelers. You are very new to them! By the way, if you want to eat Kobe-beef while in Japan, that’s fun to try, but many yakiniku restaurants serve delicious beef that is much cheaper because it is not officially Kobe beef.
Experiencing the tastes of nameless small restaurants in Japan is another great way of exploring each city.