Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Vegetarian on the go in Japan - Convenience Stores

Vegetarian on the Go in Japan

Sometimes, especially while travelling, it’s hard to find a restaurant offering vegan or vegetarian food in Japan. If you live in Japan, you will already know about the many 24 hours convenience store chains like 7eleven, Family Mart or Lawson and what to get from there.
Anyways, for Japan first-timers this information might still be useful.

Some good vegan/vegetarian rice balls to get from convenience stores are:
  • pickled plum
  • Konbu/ sea weed rice balls
  • salted rice
  • azuki beans
pickled plum rice ball
left: salted rice, right: azuki beans

Although for „pickled plum“ and „sea weed“ it needs to be said that I cannot be 100% sure, if they are always vegan/vegetarian.
The labels usually do not have animal ingredients on them, but sometimes there is the  mysterious word 調味料 / „other flavours“ or „佃煮“ „simmered in sauce“ on the label without specifying exactly what flavours or sauces are used.
Anyways, I believe they are animal-free and eat them, but don’t take my word for it, if you want to be 100% sure.

Other good options from the convenience store especially in summer are the various cold noodles like Soba, Somen, Udon & Chukamen (Chukamen contain eggs!).
I buy them, leave out any of the meat toppings and put my own sauce on top as the sauce that comes with them always contains fish stock.

Cold soba and Somen noodles with different toppings.
Beware of the fish Vegetarian on the Go in Japan


For salads it's the same:
don't use the dressing that comes with it.
A really nice sauce, if you get tired of only soy sauce, is „Ponzu“ which you can also buy at most convenience stores in the sauce section.
Ponzu is made from soy sauce, glucose sugar, vinegar, lime juice and is almost certainly vegetairan/vegan. It goes with salads, noodles, grilled veggies etc…
Ponzu Sauce can be used for almost everything
Obviously there is more to buy from a convenience store that is vegan/vegetarian, but these are some of my favourites for now.

Vegetablian Tokyo 40 - Reimen Tsurushiko / Cold noodles in Shibuya

Reimen Tsurushiko is a noodle shop near Shibuya serving mainly cold noodles made from potato starch. Usually these noodles come in a meat broth, but this store serves many vegan options!!
I went there two times already and enjoyed the noodles which have a very special „spongy“ texture.
The first dish I had were hot curry noodles which I ate in winter, the second one were tomato basil noodles. I took additional cheese topping on the basil noodles, but this is optional. Both were 1180 Yen and I liked them.

I can definitely recommend this restaurant. Especially on a hot day its nice to eat something cold. However, not everyone might like the special texture of these noodles.



hot curry noodles

Reimen Tsurushiko outside

Menue

Is has signs for the vegan/vegetarian options
basil tomato noodles with cheese topping




Address:
〒150-0011 東京都渋谷区東1丁目27−6 Y.Mbil 1F


Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Vegetablian Tokyo 39 - L for You

Today I had vegan lunch at a relatively new café: L for You (https://www.lforyou.tokyo) near Omotesando. The restaurant also sells some vegan/organic groceries like soy meat, organic miso paste, organic vegetables.
The shop was hidden in a side street and not crowded during lunch time on a weekday.
The vegan meal was 1.200 Yen on weekdays - on weekends it apparently costs more - and consisted of several vegan delis, a miso soup and tea. You could choose between brown rice or bread and I chose the brown rice, which was delicious. There is also a non vegan version of the lunch plate for anyone who joins you who is not vegan.
All in all the lunch was quite nice, I especially enjoyed the vegan miso soup. Maybe I will check out the after lunch dishes at some point - the vegan burger and taco rice on the menu looked nice, too.


L for You from outside
The vegan lunch deli


Organic groceries sold in the store

1200 Yen for a vegan lunch plate
after lunch menu





Address:
Ikegami Building 1F 3-9-3 Minami-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-0062


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Vegetablian Tokyo 38 - Afuri

Afuri is a Ramen chain with a few shops in Tokyo:
They serve one vegan option, but be careful, as not all the shops really have it on the menu! When we tried the Sangenjaya store, they did not have it.
In Shinjuku however, they definitely serve the vegan Ramen and quite a while ago I also ate it at the Ebisu store. It's seasonal vegan Ramen for 1.350 Yen. The many vegetable toppings are really nice, but the broth is pretty light - for my taste a bit too light.
I think there are better vegan Ramen out there, but if you happen to be in Shinjuku and want to eat something vegetarian, it is definitely worth to try.


Seasonal Vegan Ramen



Address:
1 Chome-1-5 Nishishinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tōkyō-to 160-0023


Vegetablian Tokyo 37 - Chabuzen

»Updated April 2019«

Chabuzen is a restaurant located between the stations Shimokitazawa and Daitabashi. It serves "Yakuzen" cuisine, which is food using special spices that are supposed to have health benefits. The shop is very small with only two tables, where you sit on the ground, and seats on the counter.
Ramen and curry are the main dishes served. I tried the yeast Ramen "Dragon" (950 Yen) and enjoyed it, but it was not  the best Ramen I ever had. On another occasion I tried the black Sri Lanka curry (950) and it was super spicy. I liked it, but would only recommend it, if you can handle spicy.
I definitely want to come back to try the other dishes and I like the shop, because it has a very homey atmosphere. Only one elderly guy was cooking the food and serving the customers.

Ramen "Dragon"


Ramen Menu



Curry Menu



Address:
6 Chome-16-20 Daita, Setagaya-ku, Tōkyō-to 155-0033


Vegetablian Tokyo 36 - Kyushu Jangara

»Updated April 2019«

Kyushu Jangara is a Ramen shop which serves a vegan option (1000Yen).
The Ramen had a nice and strong taste and I would definitely recommend it. As it is not an all-vegan restaurant it's especially recommendable, if you want to eat out together with meat-eaters.
Kyushu Jangara is a restaurant chain with stores all over Tokyo and Japan, although apparently not all the shops serve a vegan option. We went to the one in Harajuku, but according to the info on their website as of April 2019 the stores in these districts of Tokyo also serve vegan ramen:

Akihabara, Omotesando, Ginza, Nihonbashi, Harajuku, Akasaka, Seibu Ikebukuro

Check out there website (Japanese only) for details: http://kyushujangara.co.jp/shops/



vegan ramen




Address:
1 Chome-13-21 Jingūmae, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 150-0001

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Vegetablian Tokyo 36 - Ain Soph Journey Shinjuku

»Updated April 2019«

Ain Soph Journey (http://ain-soph.jp) is a really nice vegan restaurant in Shinjuku, serving a variety of Japanese/Western style dishes using different types of veggie meat. We were four people and tried a lot of different dishes! I was the only vegetarian among us, but the other three were really surprised about the quality of the food (especially the veggie meat and the good seasoning). So I can definitely also recommended to go here with non-vegan friends. Prices are not really cheap, but I think the food is worth it. 

We had as a starter vegan deep fired "veggie chicken (Really recommended), vegan cutlet and veggie tortilla roll (Really recommended).
As main dishes I tried the Mushroom Hayashi Rice which I really liked and the Taco Rice, which was also extremely tasty! As dessert we had Tofu Lemon cheese cake, Chocolate cake and waffle with ice cream. I especially liked the ice cream with nuts!!

Vegan deep fired "veggie chicken (650Yen)
Vegan cutlet (650Yen)
Veggie tortilla roll (1600Yen)


Taco Rice (1600Yen)



Mushroom Hayashi Rice (1400Yen)

Lemon cheese cake (750Yen)
Chocolate cake (800Yen)
Waffle with ice cream (1000Yen)

Shop from the inside


Address:
Shinjuku, 3 Chome−89
160-0022 Tokyo
Japan