Will appreciate help and ideas, we have on April 10 days at Tokyo and 5 at Kyoto, trying to build an interesting list that will have some of the upscale options, hopefully without passing by much the 20,000 yen pp area, alongside good “less formal” options, maybe possible without reserving, good Izakayas areas for evening strolling etc.. Also counting on massive Depachikas exploring, and I’m sure that a couple of outrageous hotel dinners in the room will come from hunting there :-)
In Tokyo we will stay at the Hilton in Shinjuku, so breakfast is covered, hope the food will be good and somehow experiential also with Japanese cuisine options and not only western style.
For places that reservation is a must, aiming for late as possible "last order" lunch hours or early first evening service, this might probably also increase my chances with the reservations. Unfortunately we don't speak even the slightest Japanese, but we don't have any problem ordering "blind" from menues or eating whatever chefs decide to put infront of us :-)
Really want Ishikawa, opens 17:30, so i guess this is my target. It has two rounds per evening ? Hope it is no introduction only place, would have loved to include Matsukawa in my list, but i guess reserving at Ishikawa is a much more realistic target. What is the difference between the 15k and 19k menus ?
Second place that i liked reading about - Seizan Mita, according to website LO is 13:30, not bad at all, is it another realistic reservation option ? Significant difference between lunch and dinner there, and maybe we should mark it for dinner instead ? Other places in the same price ballpark for kaiseki, that i should consider instead ? :-)
Going over zillion reviews and the forum archive of course, got more "connected" to three places - Namba, Miyaha and Tokami, which i consider reserving to cover the three more "upscale sushi options" i'm looking for without paying the highest sushi rates for the city. Clueless at this point regarding their location and which is possible of taking advantage of cheaper lunch, will have to check more seriously.
Want Quintessence, 8500 for lunch doesn't seem that bad, 13:00 a bit early.. Dinner expirience much "stronger" then lunch ? Price difference for sure significant. Other options to consider in the inovative french category ? :-)
Beef and meat in general not the most important direction, especially the high end steaks in the very high price range, but do want one or two interesting places in the list, Yakiniku style for sure something we rarely can find, actually also Shabu Shabu. Maybe Korean restaurant.. A place that will give access to try good meat and other interesting ingridients, but with a quite moderate price tag.. Read about Yakiniku Kunimoto, may fit the bill or can do better ? Might be a walk in option ? Site i think only in Japanese, not even sure about the hours.
Tonkatsu - i guess the usual suspects, Maisen and Batugami, maybe some place much less popular ? Any very good Izakaya/place that might serve good Tonkatsu but also very good "all around menu", sashimi and other items except for the tonkatsu ?
Maybe add to that a solid reasonably priced tampura expirience, mid class or highest price range with exceptionally good lunch value ?
On everything else i'm quite clueless currently, hoping to try some great izakayas areas in Shinjuku and other parts of the city that will be fun for strolling and tasting different some good stuff from here and there :-) But quite don't know where to start, have too many names and i guess each "neighborhood" will have it's own, what "evening strolling areas" might be special and worth travelling to ? From what i'm reading, not sure the hotel area and Shinjuku in general, will be our best bet for that..
What seems really interesting are izakayas that focus on cooked seafood and are considered special, would be great getting info on such and on any other type of places that serve excellent cooked seafood for lunch and dinner.
Kyoto options soon to follow, this message is already too long :-) Thanks a lot !