J's Kitchen

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!

J's Kitchen
Gaien Nishi Dôri
5-15-22 Miaminazabu,

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


yume no yukari said...

i will give j's kitchen a try for sure when i'm in tokyo again. havn't been to hiroo yet anyway, so one more reason to have a look at that neighbourhood.

besides, may i ask you where the hell you got that vegan cheese you're writing about?
i searched for ages for vegan cheese in tokyo and the only one i found was "vegetarian" labeled cheese which contained some dairy stuff "just for flavoring" (like the shopowner told me) in a health food store in aoyama.
that felt like a kick in my face.

Julia said...

the supermarket is on the way from hiroo stn to the german embassy, after about 5min walk on the right hand side of the street. lots of food from all over the world.. i forgot the name unfortunatly, but i think you will be able to find it, it is quite big.
i have been at j`s kitchen again just a little while ago with a friend and the food was great again! so i can really recommend this place!

Bruce Johnson said...

Visited J's Kitchen tonight and found the food wonderful. There are some interesting appetizers and great, tasty main dishes, and fantastic desserts. The place is fully vegan. I highly recommend it. The place is not too formal and closes early (21h00). It is right above the Hiroo subway stop (near the Citibank).

Anonymous said...

so i tried it 2 weeks ago based on my friend's rec and the website.

As a restaurant owner, I think the food was interesting and tasted pretty good, but i gotta say, the atmosphere was not as good as the food or the web site...The owner seemed very unfriendly and snappy and she was openly complaining about her own people in front of us.

In my opinion, that's not a great sign whenever you go out to eat, especially, if the boss is complaining about the chef !!!!!

i suggest you to make it take-out or make sure to look into your food carefully before you eat.

yap, it's organic alright.

otherwise, it's not too bad.

lxt said...

Husband and I are from the U.S. and came to Japan for a visit, and we went on a vegan restaurant tour around Tokyo. J's Kitchen was a HUGE favorite of ours! Their food is AMAZING and OUTSTANDING! The service is incredible and the people are extremely helpful despite language barrier (perhaps it is the Japanese culture, but service at all restaurants we visited were the BEST service we have ever received and well worth tipping for, except unfortunately, the Japanese do not accept tips). Perhaps what I loved most aside from the food was how respectful and hospitable the owner's 10-year-old son, Jerome, was. He spoke fluent English, was more than accommodating, very respectful and well-mannered, and made our dining experience a blast! This is definitely a restaurant worth visiting, and you're surely going to come back for seconds and thirds =D Much love to J's!