I just saw that it is quite a long time since my last restaurant recommendation for Tokyo. This definitly falls short of the nice range of vegetarian restaurants that can be found in the city. A real jewel is J's Kitchen, a light-flooded two-storey place located on the Gaien Nishi Dôri close to Hiroo Metro station, that keeps the promise to serve "Fine Foods" as written on the marquee over the entrance. Their own definition of "Fine Foods" is that "the vegetables used are all organic and the seasonings used are all natural, with no preservatives added. The water used is elaborately filtered [...]. Whitened sugar, meat, eggs and animal fat from dairy products are not used."* Furthermore they use the whole product whenever possible. That means they don't peel away the precious nutrients that can be found in the skin of veggies and only brown rice is served. All this deserves to be supported wholeheartedly, especially when the result is as mouthwatering and satisfying as the vegan lunch I had at J's Kitchen.
Two daily changing lunch choices are offered beside Tempeh sandwiches, Soy burgers, Curry and salads. There are more meals on the dinner menu, like Cha-zuke (brown rice in bancha-tea with some side dishes), a vegetable Fajita, Korean-style fried rice with veggies and scrambled Tofu, or Hijiki Capellini (now that sounds like interesting wafû pasta!)...
However, I tried "J's Lunch" and it was gorgeous! For 1680 Yen (which is not really cheap, but not overprized either) I got a generous pile of vegetables, roots and mushrooms with a savory Seitan sauce, a big bowl with brown rice and gomashio to season the rice, miso soup, a little salad, and three kinds of pickles and little noshes. My absolute favourite in this dish was the tempura-style deep fried Taro root / Sato-imo.
Wonderful! Lots of very fresh and good ingredients, affectionately and carefuly cooked, lovingly arranged, super-friendly served in a pleasant atmosphere - that is even more than what is necessary to make me happy! If all that is not enough for you: the vegan cakes, cookies, muffins they offer looked extremely tempting and like directly sent from sweets heaven.. and they offer some nice Onigiri, Sandwiches and so on for take-out, if you don't have the time to stay there for your meal.
I felt so good (and full!) after eating all that tasty and healthy stuff there that I went for a walk around Hiroo. This is an area that has a lot to offer on the culinary side and thanks to the numerous foreigners residing there, finding vegetarian goodies is much easier than elsewhere in Tokyo. So it is quite worth walking around there, having a look into fancy bakeries (French mainly - oh la la!) and supermarkets that offer a wide range of products from all around the world. I spotted so many unusual things (for Japanese standards) like Matzeballs, real unsugared Müsli, Cous Cous, Olives and in the end I gave some vegan "cheese" with chili a try and it wasn't bad, even melted when grilled on bread in the toaster oven..
So if you happen to be in Hiroo check out J's Kitchen! If not take the Hibiya line and go there!
Gaien Nishi Dôri
東京都港区南麻布５－１５－２２ [click for map]
Tokyo Metro Hibiya line: Hiroo Stn
open mo-sa: 11am - 9pm
sundays & holidays: 11am - 5pm
*quoted from their leaflet