I’ve just bid farewell to the third set of guests in two months and I have to say … I have never eaten so much Japanese food!
Don’t get me wrong, I love love LOVE Japanese food. I love it so much that I cook it at home. Which means that when I go out, I normally look for something else, like Thai or Italian or French. Things I can’t – or don’t – replicate in my kitchen. But cuisines (and some aspects of Japanese cuisine) can get a bit heavy.
Call me crazy, but sometimes this girl just wants a juice.
Yes, I’m one of those silly people who actually craves vegetables. Luckily, Tokyo is more than happy to oblige with a growing number of vegetarian and even vegan eateries. Below are just a few of my favorites:
I love this bright, spacious cafe with a strong focus on veggies, juice and healthy meals. Chow down on a miso sesame ginger or Genovese salad, or go for beet and beef or spinach and chicken soup. There are several wraps and sandwiches to choose from as well. Smoothies or a homemade ginger ale make the perfect accompaniment to the filling meals.
Crayon House is a bookstore, toy store and organic beauty shop all rolled into one. And in the basement, they offer visitors a daily organic lunch buffet (¥1500). Mondays are meatless, but the rest of the days may have some animal options. Dishes range from grilled tofu with a tomato sauce to various salads using local veggies. Brown rice, white rice, and miso soup are always available. Trips back up to the buffet are unlimited.
I would never have found this place if my daughter’s school weren’t located literally above it. Some reviews online said that portions were too small, but I felt the daily lunch special for around ¥1500 perfectly suited my appetite. I got to pick three main dishes to accompany rice, side salads and miso soup.
**Can’t believe I forgot to take a photo. I remember being really hungry that day. 😉 **
8ablish is one of Tokyo’s first vegan fine-dining restaurants. Located in Aoyama, not far from the UN University, this is a good place to come for a classier meal than the listings above. The pumpkin and carrot potage is a winner and the vegetable souvlaki is sublime. The faux meatballs and vegan ravioli were also a good choice.
This eatery, recently moved from its old location in West Ebisu to a new spot on the other side of the same station, focuses mostly on raw food. While you can occasionally find small offerings of cooked food (the menu mentioned a cooked curry dish), my plate of raw Pad Thai, dehydrated onion bread and vegetable maki rolls was good and surprisingly filling. It came with a small green smoothie and ran about ¥1300.
Though there are PLENTY of places to tempt your tastebuds in Tokyo, if your tummy needs a bit of a break, these places are all excellent for a lighter, “greener” meal.
**While I have linked all of the shop’s main webpages, the first few are very … non-user friendly. For more English info, simply google each restaurant or use the excellent Time Out Tokyo page as a guide.