Category Archives: Out the East Gate

Restaurants near the East Gate

Kushiya Monogatari – Fondue Restaurant

Oil Fondue5If you are looking for fondue, look no further than Kushiya Monogatari, at the eastside Aeon Mall. The restaurant is located just inside the Mall’s west entrance (by Mister Donut). Walk through the entrance and turn left.

Oil Fondue2If it’s your first time, be sure to ask for help, the workers are very friendly. But just in case, here’s the rundown: You will be given a bowl of milky batter, and another of bread crumbs. Walk up to the buffet and choose your “food on a stick.” These foods include meat, vegetables, potatoes, seafood, and more. When you return to your table, dip the desired item in the batter and then roll the item in the bread crumbs. Place the breaded item in the oil and fry to perfection. The restaurant includes plastic bibs and a cover to prevent oil splatter. Once you are finished cooking your items, choose from a variety of sauces to dip them in. The sauces are located at the buffet near the drink machine. Sauces include spicy, sweet, cheesy, etc. and are marked in English. When you are finished with your stick, you can place it in a handy cup located on your table, to reduce clutter.

Oil Fondue6If that isn’t enough, there is also yakisoba, curry, salad, dessert, etc. at the buffet. Be sure to save room for the dessert, a chocolate fountain!! They have marshmallows, pastries, fruits and more. I also recommend frying up a wedge of pineapple, yum!

Similar to a yakiniku restaurant, there is seating for both small and large groups. The restaurant is open every day from 11:00am to 11:00pm. The phone number is 042-561-7737. The Japanese website is http://www.kushi-ya.com. Please note that not all menu items are presented on the website.  Visit the Aeon Mall page for directions. – Megan Luke, December 2013

Hamazushi: Conveyor Belt Sushi

My husband and I discovered Hamazushi during one of our adventures to the MoriTown Mall. We were craving sushi, so we decided to give it a try. It was the perfect sushi fix, and we’ve been back many times. In fact, Hamazushi is a chain restaurant with many locations throughout Japan.

HamazushiYou can park in the parking lot outside the restaurant. Once you enter, make sure you get a ticket with a number to be seated. You can choose to sit at a table or the bar. There is a television screen in the waiting area. When your number is displayed on the screen, take your ticket to the register where you will be handed a second number. This number corresponds to your seat. Once you find your seat, you are ready to eat.

It’s a conveyor belt sushi bar, so you simply grab what looks appealing (as long as the plate is not elevated on a tray, these are special requests from other tables). If you are feeling brave, you may use the touch screen to order specific foods, however, it’s in Japanese. When the food is on its way, the touch screen will beep to let you know the sushi (on an elevated tray) is on the belt near your table. Choose from a variety of sushi, desserts, and sides. Most plates are ¥105. Water is self-serve. Or you can make green tea at your table. You can order beer and other beverages through the waiter. To summon a waiter, press the yellow button on the right side of the touch screen. When you are finished push the button. A waiter will come, count your plates, and give you a ticket. Take the ticket to the register to pay.

The restaurant is open daily from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm. However, the last opportunity to be seated is at 10:30 pm. GPS 35.714612, 139.365307. Michelle Nexon, July 2013


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DON-DON, Yakiniku Buffet

I went to a new yakiniku restaurant DON-DON over the weekend.  It is a Yakiniku buffet with salad bar and dessert bar, about a 10 min drive
from the East gate. It is housed in a 2-story structure with the restaurant on top and parking on the bottom.  The buffet comes with 85 items to order from plus the salad bar, dessert bar and cotton candy- all you can eat for 100 minutes.  It costs ¥2480 plus tax.  Grade schoolers cost ¥1240 plus tax while kids under 6 eat for free!  There is also a menu to order from where items are ¥1980 plus tax, but this doesn’t include the salad-dessert bars.  The drinks are a separate charge, all you can drink soda is ¥200yen/person.  All you can drink alcohol is ¥1200/person.  All parties at the same table have to order the same menu and all additional orders are placed via a tablet on the table. I think the tablet menu came with pictures (my friend did all the ordering). The first plate of meats comes with the initial order and then you can start ordering from the tablet.  It is that is non-smoking in the general restaurant.  There is an enclosed room for smokers.  Open M-F 1700-2400, weekends and holidays 1130-2400.  GPS 35.750761, 139.390193.
DIRECTIONS:  Exit left out the East gate.  Turn right at the Seven-Eleven.  Turn left on Route 59 towards the AEON mall. Turn right on Route 5.  It will be on the left side across from a Seven-Eleven past the “Sanbonenoki” light. – Hiromi Arita, July 2013.

Châteraisé Desserts

cbakery-1Just outside the East Gate is Châteraisé Desserts, a small storefront boasting more types of ice cream desserts than I’ve ever seen in one place, as well as an adorable bakery. Very few signs are in English, but you’ll see a number of ice cream sandwiches, ice cream bars, and various other ice cream confections in the outdoor area. It is a great place to go on a hot afternoon if you are hungry for something sweet and feeling adventurous. The ice creams range from ¥100-¥300.  Meanwhile, inside is a veritable wonderland of puddings, pastries, crackers, cakes, and tarts. Many of their items are available individually or in gift sets, ranging anywhere from ¥105 for a pudding, to ¥300-¥800 for a cookie or pastry, to ¥1000-¥4000 for a gift set. They also sell three types of wine to add on if you’re purchasing a gift.  Open daily 9am – 9pm.
DIRECTIONS: Turn right out of the East Gate.  Châteraisé will be on your left after the first light. – Roxanne Ready, May 2013

cbakery-inside-3 cbakery-inside-1 cbakery-icecream-1

Black Pork Restaurant and Grocery

This cute little family run restaurant serves up some awesome tonkatsu (breaded fried pork) sets andsoba/udon sets to many city workers during the week (City Hall is just around the corner) and starving families on the weekends. Open for lunch and dinner. They make their own noodles there.   After lunch, go through the swinging doors to their attached grocery store which serves up just made tempura, bento boxes and homemade Mochi. They also have produce and fresh meats on hand. 
TIP: I learned the hard way that you have to come as close to 11:30 (when they open for lunch) as possible when coming for lunch. The city workers around the corner pack the place at noon.
TIP 2: If you have babies, they will suggest you sit in the room with the Chabudais (low dining tables) and tatami mats. This room fills up with smokers so position yourself near one of the windows and you’re golden.
TIP 3: This is NOT a Non-Smoking restaurant. Please keep that in mind when you try and find a place to sit (provided you have a choice when you get there).
TIP 4: Since all items are not pre-made (this isn’t Burger King), it does take at least 20-25 minutes for your food to be prepared. Well worth it, in my opinion. GPS: 35.75567, 139.38652.  Anna Schmoldt, 2012.
DIRECTIONS: Set your odometer to zero as you exit the East Gate and turn left. Turn right at the first light (0.2km) by the 7-11. Continue straight down this narrow road to the four-way intersection  at 1.3km. Turn left here, onto a major road, which is marked 59 on maps. Keep driving, past the Aeon Mall on your right and across Shin Ome Kaido (sometimes called Route 5) until about 3km. When you get to Ome Kaido, signposted Route 5, turn right. Black Pork is about 50 meters down, on the left. It has a brown wood facade, which is nearly obscured by a tree. We’re not sure of the phone number, but the number of the business immediately to the left of the restaurant is 042-561-1631.

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Sato

Sato is modern Japanese restaurant with traditional aspects. It offers a variety of Japanese food to please everyone, from kids to sumo wrestlers. You can dine either in the booths (in the front of the restaurant) or in one of the many tatami mat rooms. For the latter, you exchange your shoes for slippers (placing your shoes in a provided locker, locked with a wooden key). The slippers are then worn everywhere except on the tatami mats themselves. Each room is equipped with one table which fits up to six comfortably, but the sliding doors can be opened to accommodate a larger party. The extensive menu is written in katakana, but the pictures make ordering easy. Samples include: three types of udon (Japanese noodles range from ¥380-580), sushi (¥480-880), sashimi (¥680), tempura set (¥680), tonkatsu (pork cutlet, ¥680), fried chicken (¥580), and mushroom hamburger (¥580). Side sets of rice, chawan mushi, miso soup, pickles (¥380), gyoza (6 pieces, ¥250) or edamame (soy beans, ¥180) are available to go along with entrees. Kid’s meals offer hamburgers, curry rice, or sushi (¥480). For those with a “yen” for what sumo wrestlers eat, the chanko nabe is a must. It is a high calorie, nutritious stew of pork, chicken, fish with carrots, bean curd, and onions simmered in a rich soy or sugar sauce (¥1680). Green tea is complimentary. Sake, whiskey, beer, and soda are ¥350-600, and separate desserts are ¥200-450. It’s a wonderful place for a couple or a squadron group.
DIRECTIONS: Turn left out of East Gate. Turn right at the first light. At the second light (T-intersection) turn left. Go past Diamond City Mall. The restaurant will be through 5 lights on the left at the Shin Ome Kaido intersection.

Hours: 11am – 12:30 am. Telephone: 0425-53-6060
Nina Carr,  2007

Edo Ichi “Vikings”

NOTE: THE BRANCH THE DIRECTIONS LEAD TO RECENTLY CHANGED ITS NAME FROM VIKING TO NEO. STILL ALL YOU CAN EAT YAKINIKU AND SUSHI. 2012

This is a chain of all-you-can-eat restaurants where you cook your own food. When you enter, pay about ¥2500 (cheaper for children) per person and get a receipt. You will then be escorted to a table and your grill will be started. Put oil on the grill and head for the plates. There is a selection of sushi near the soda dispensers and rice, soup, and curry in large pots on both sides of the case where the plates are located. Go to the open refrigerated display cases and select as much of whatever food you want. There is a wide choice of meat, vegetables, gyoza, salads, fruit, and noodles. Take the plates to your table and grill your discoveries. For dessert, try cream puffs, chocolate pie, or ice cream. The ice cream is located in a separate case near the drink dispensers. One word of warning: Because many people are cooking, the room gets VERY smoky. Do not wear good clothes! I also take my contact lenses out. If you are tall, be careful not to hit your knees on the bottom of the grill because it is very hot! Try to go before the rush which is usually 6-7pm. Not only is the restaurant less crowded but so is the highway.

DIRECTIONS: Set your Odometer to zero and exit right out the East Gate and turn left at the first light (Inadaira Koen Minami intersection). At the next light (5 way intersection, 0.7 km.) Make a right hand turn (not a sharp right, but angled right towards Daiei). At 1.9 km bear right at the intersection, where this road merges with another (Family Mart on right Corner, Toyota dealer on left corner). Turn left at the second light onto Itsukaichi-Kaido Road (2.0 km, Tennobashi Intersection, just after you go under the tracks). Stay on this road until the light with Edo-Ichi Yakiniku all-you-can-eat Restaurant on the far right corner (3.5 km). The red sign reads “Sushi & Yakiniku Vikings.” Hours? Telephone?

Karen Ozmen. Liz Ruskin verified directions Sept. 2011

The Wok Restaurant

The Wok Restaurant is a quaint Chinese restaurant right outside the East Gate. They offer a variety of Chinese dishes and the service is excellent. They have a lunch special which includes salad, soup, pickle, entree of your choice with rice, and dessert. Entrees include, but are not limited to fish and fried rice, sweet and sour chicken, and stir fry pork. The lunch special including a drink is approximately ¥1500.Wok Restaurant

They are open 11:00-14:30 and 17:30 to 22:00. However, they are closed every Wednesday and the first and third Tuesday of each month. Their telephone number is 042-531-8028.

DIRECTIONS: Turn left out the East Gate. Drive past the Seven Eleven, and through the first light. The restaurant will be on your left. There is a large Heineken beer bottle sign next to the restaurant, you can’t miss it. Just past the
Heineken sign, you can turn left into their parking lot. Parking is behind the building. Michelle Arostegui, 2002, updates & photo Michelle Nexon, July 2013

Kourakuen – Ramen for a Song

 We like this chain of ramen restaurants because they’re good, consistent, cheap and have a great kid’s meal. Did I mention cheap?
The picture menu makes ordering a snap. A huge steaming bowl of noodle goodness, with veggies and meat, comes to less than ¥500. The menu shows dishes under three categories, based on broth flavor:
みそ味 – Miso
塩味 – Salty
醤油味 – Soy
A meal set — noodles with gyoza (Chinese moon-shaped dumplings), fried rice or a small vegetable plate — costs a few coins more. You can also get a combo that is a plate of gyoza and a half portion of ramen.
Best of all is the kids menu. For ¥300 I can buy my son a lunch of ramen, fried rice, a drink and a candy. It even comes with a special coin he can put in the vending machine by the door to get a small toy.
At our closest branch, there was a small lunch rush at 11:45. Just add your name to the list at the podium. We wrote it in English, gave the number in our party and circled テーブル (“Taberu” for “table”.) The other choice is カウンタ (“Countah” or counter.) We were seated within five minutes.
Another nice thing about this chain is that they’re everywhere in Japan, so wherever you are you’ll be within reach of a good cheap restaurant that suits adults as well as kids.
DIRECTIONS to branch nearest the East Gate: Set your odometer to zero as you exit the East Gate and turn left. Turn right at the first light (0.2km) by the 7-11. Continue straight down this narrow road to the four-way intersection  at 1.3km. Turn left and drive to the next light. Kourakuen is immediately past the light, on the left. It’s a black building, across the road from the Aeon Mall, with a sign that has large black Kanji in the middle, sandwiched by lines of smaller red characters above and below. Hours: 11am-2am. Tel.: 042-520-7144. GPS: 35.74532, 139.38265. Christina De Los Santos, 2011

The Blueberry Restaurant

On 7 July 2012 the restaurant was closed. It was early in the morning, but a sign taped to the door made me wonder whether this was more than a routine closure. — Liz.

Only a 20-minute drive from Yokota’s East Gate is a quaint, Italian-style restaurant called The Blueberry, nestled in the bamboo forest surrounding Lake Tama. The woodsy setting is probably the best reason to go. The menu on our last visit, in 2011, was not in English nor did it have pictures, so it’s helpful to have someone who can read Katakana. We made do by asking the waitress “Pizza?” and she read the different kinds of pizza, which we recognized as “Margherita,” Neapolitan” and  “capricciosa.” Capricciosa mean capricious, and in this case it was an unexpected mix of salami, shrimp and mushrooms topped with an egg. The crust was thin and had a pleasing hand-formed appearance. The tomato sauce on the Margherita seemed to be straight-up tomato paste but it was the prettiest dish, with fresh basil on top. There was also a “pizza salad” on the menu that we wished we’d tried.
For pasta, we had “pepperocino,” which was garnished with red pepper and a dramatic tuft of saffron-like threads, and also a pasta meat sauce, which came with a soft-boiled egg on top.
Other categories on the menu: soup, salad and ice cream. There might have been a lot more, but we don’t read Japanese so we wouldn’t know. We did notice a salad bar. Upon entering The Blueberry, we noticed a well-stocked dessert case with European-style cakes. They are said to be as delicious as they look, but we were pretty full. The food portions seemed to be Western-sized at The Blueberry. The personal pizza on the lunch menu, larger than an average dinner plate, could feed two, especially if they ordered a salad also. The pizza cost about ¥900. Pasta was about ¥800. Lunch sets were in the ¥1400 to ¥2000 range. Hours: daily, except Monday, 11-2pm (lunch), 2-5pm (tea), 5-9pm (dinner). Tel. 04-2924-7180.
DIRECTIONS: Reset your trip meter to 0km as you exit the East Gate to the left. Turn right at the first light (0.2km) by the 7-11. Continue straight down this narrow road to the four-way intersection  at 1.3km. Turn left. Keep going, past Diamond City Mall on the right and past Yamada on the left. Continue across Shin Ome Kaido. (It is signposted Route 5, but so is old Ome Kaido, which you’ll also soon cross.) Stay on this road through 5 lights. The road winds and climbs a hill. You’ll pass a large onsen on the left at 3.7km. Keep going. At the top of the hill you will see a blue sign for Lake Saimyo. The restaurant (6.5km) is just past this sign on the left. It is bright yellow and has several parking spaces in front. The Chinese Dragon Pagoda park is next door. Liz Ruskin, Suzie Nardozzi, 2011.

Nepali Kitchen

nepali kitchen by Sarah strausSatisfy your taste for curry or tandori at this close-to-base restaurant. Lunch sets run from ¥800-1400 and include choices of vegetable, chicken, lentil, or mutton curries. Nan or rice as well as a small salad accompany most dishes. The garlic cheese nan is well-loved at Nepali Kitchen, as well as their lassi (yogurt) drinks. The dinner menu is more varied and includes samosas and other “snacks,” curries and tandoori. Dinner sets run ¥1780-1890. You can rent the entire restaurant for a party and they have a full bar available. In the entryway to the restaurant they sell South American wool sweaters, Indian saris, jewelry and other eclectic items. This is a small restaurant with no division of smoking and non-smoking areas. Hours: Open 7 days a week. Lunch: 11:30am-3pm; Dinner: 5-11pm. Telephone: 042-551-8300.
DIRECTIONS: Turn left out of the Fussa Gate (set odometer to zero). Stay in the left-hand lane and go straight. When the road forks and Highway 16 splits off, stay to the left and keep going straight. You will cross Highway 7 and at the next corner you will see a gravel/dirt parking lot on your left, just before a gas station (2.2 km from the Fussa Gate). You should park in one of the five or so spots in this lot. Then turn around and look across the street—you’ll see a white awning and green door both labeled “Nepali Kitchen.”  -confirmed by Sarah Straus, September 2013.

Jonathan’s

This chain of Japanese restaurants seems like the Japanese-food version of Dennys. They typically have at least picture menus and the food is pretty good. Most of them have all-you-can-drink soft drinks. There are Jonathan’s everywhere, and the one closest to the Fussa Gate is near Fussa Station. They are generally open late, which is nice if you are getting back to base late and need a meal.
DIRECTIONS #1: Go straight out the Supply Gate and cross two railroad tracks.  Jonathan’s will be past the 2nd railroad tracks on the left. Hours: 10am – 2am. 042-539-7216
DIRECTIONS #2:  Go right out of East Gate. At the first light turn left. Jonathan’s will be on the left at the next light.  Open 24 hours. 042-520-7009 Kyoko Bissell, 2010

Bamiyan

A reader had trouble finding this place. Do we need better directions or is it closed?  Leave comments if you can help us.  – Sarah, Dec 2013

The Bamiyan Chinese restaurant chain (featuring a peach logo) is popular because of its family atmosphere, delicious food and affordable prices. Three are near Yokota. Monday through Saturday, a lunch set for ¥580 is featured (children’s set is ¥480). Equally delicious are the Bamiyan noodles (¥380), gyoza (¥230), and the dinners ¥400-700). For an additional ¥150, you can add steamed rice, Chinese pickles and soup to your dinner. And, amazingly, unlimited self-serve drinks are only ¥150. The picture menu is in English. The last order is taken immediately before closing. Hours: 10am-2am weekdays (open 9am weekends).
DIRECTIONS, Hamura Location: Exit the Fussa gate and go straight, across one set of tracks. At the “Y” intersection, go to the right and turn right at the 2nd light. You are now very near Fussa Station, on a street called Yanagi Dori. Seiyu is on the left. Drive another 3.7 km. The restaurant is on the right and has a large parking lot. Telephone: 0425-70-7068. Address: 2-14-1 Sakaecho, Hamura.
DIRECTIONS, East Gate location: turn right out of the East Gate and turn left at the first light, turn right at the 5 way intersection (not hard right), turn left into Daiei parking. Bamiyan is located next to Daiei.