One Perfect Day of Eating in Ginza
Ginza is where the best foods in Japan can be found.
Guidebooks tend to be overwhelmingly populated with high-end places like sushi restaurants and traditional Japanese restaurants, but there are also plenty of hole-in-the-wall places with great food for the price that are frequented by locals.
In this special featured article, we'll be introducing 6 carefully selected jewels of shops, including a long-standing bar and izakaya as well as sandwiches and shaved ice you'll be glad to wait in line for.
10:00 - Morning Coffee at Hamanoheya Parlor
This long-standing coffee shop was founded in 1966. It was closed down in 2011, but it reopened the following year due to popular demand from its fans.
Its retro atmosphere has remained unchanged, and it boasts a robust list of signature sandwiches.
Certain items, like the "Egg Sandwich" (620 yen) piled high with fluffy eggs or the "Fruit Sandwich" (620 yen) with plenty of fresh cream, are available for takeout, so you can take your order back with you to your hotel room to enjoy there.
The "Hamanoheya Blend" (400 yen) is perfect for taking your time to enjoy the morning. It's a full-bodied blend that includes Hawaiian Kona coffee, and the in-house-roasted result is a labor of love. The blend is a lighter flavor with less bitter notes, so you might find yourself asking for a refill (200 yen) before you know it.
Address: B1F 1-12-1 Yurakucho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
12:30 - Lunch at Centre The Bakery
This is Ginza's hottest bakery and restaurant, which boasts extremely long lines every day.
You can line up and wait anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour for three varieties of bread: sandwich loaf (800 yen), Pullman loaf (800 yen), and English bread (700 yen).
Inside the shop's fashionable eat-in space, you can enjoy luxurious sandwiches made with thick-sliced bread.
They offer a variety of sandwiches, including their "Tonkatsu Sandwich" (1800 yen) with thick slices of pork and the colorful "Fruit Sandwich" (1800 yen) with seasonal fruits like kiwi, strawberries, and grapes. Be sure to take this chance to enjoy their fluffy, sweet bread!
Address: 1-2-1 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
15:00 - Snack at Ginza Ginger
This cafe specializes in drinks and sweets made with ginger.
Its most popular item is its shaved ice with ginger syrup, and you can choose from a variety of toppings, like fruit jams or "espuma" foamed cream.
Their limited-time items, like "Senga Sengana" (980 yen) with plenty of strawberries, the addictively refreshing "Orange Ginger" (980 yen), "Kinako Camembert Tiramisu," and "Pumpkin and Berries," are all must-tries!
Address: 1-4-3 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
17:30 - Dinner at Sanshuya
This long-standing izakaya was founded in 1968.
It's located just one street off from the showy main Ginza street, and it's a famous shop often frequented by the men from Tsukiji Market.
From sashimi made with fresh fish to grilled fish, deep-fried oysters and fried shrimp, this shop certainly has a wide menu to choose from!
Enjoy your preferred seafood dish alongside freshly-made rice and miso soup for your dinner while sightseeing around Ginza.
The reasonable prices for dinner and drinks, around 3000 to 4000 yen, is almost unheard of in Ginza.
Sanshuya is open continuously from 11:30 until 22:00, so it's also super accessible.
Address: 2-3-4 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
19:00 - Cocktails at STAR BAR GINZA
This bar is the cream of the crop in Japan's bar scene, owned by the president of Japan's Bartender Association.
As the owner is often busy, he rarely shows up at the bar in person, but his young barstaff maintain his attitude and man the counter.
Their signature cocktail is the "Sidecar." This moderately sweet and refreshing drink is perfect for after dinner.
This is the perfect place to enjoy Japan's bar culture in an adult atmosphere with the sound of the bartender's shaker ringing out.
Address: 1-5-13 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo
20:30 - Soba at Ginza Shimada
This standing-bar izakaya is owned by the chef of a Michelin 3-star Japanese restaurant.
It's a popular neighborhood shop where you can enjoy premium seasonal items like Wagyu beef, fugu, and crab at reasonable prices.
Its most popular dish is its signature "Karasumi Soba" (1600 yen). They pile extravagant amounts of karasumi (salted mullet roe) on top of their fresh and chewy thin soba noodles.
The texture of the karasumi smoked with cherry wood is incredibly smooth. Close out your night in Ginza in a luxurious way with the karasumi mixed into fragrant soba noodles.
Address: 8-2-8 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo