Eat Tokyo Yakitori at Joumon Roppongi
“what’s on the menu tonight?”
“i heard there’s this grilled skewer place here…”
Joumon Roppongi ジョウモン 六本木店 tl;dr
- Skewers of Charcoal Grilled Everything
- Creative Seating Options
- Overflowing Sake
Busy Open Kitchen
What a wonderful place to go and explore the unique neighborhoods and all the various food options. I know I’m spoiled for being expose to as much food as we have growing up in California, but nothing quite prepared me for the intense immersion into Japanese cuisine as visiting Tokyo.
We’ve eaten bowls of ramen, all you can eat shabu shabu, and even went to a Only in Japan Robot Show. But we haven’t had yakitori yet… Yakitori, the beer complimenting cuisine of grilled beef, chicken, seafood, and veggies! Most places, yakitori is ubiquitous with kushiyaki (grilled non chicken items) so don’t be surprised if you go to a yakitori place to find nothing but chicken.
Don’t worry, it’s still AMAZING!
Searching online, asking people, and simply wandering the streets of Roppongi, we found ourselves at this open air, street facing izakaya (think Japanese pub) that screamed to be visited.
Welcome to Joumon Roppongi
When we first got there, we were asked whether we had a reservation.
Sadly we did not.
With that being said, they told us that they could make room for us, but we only had 1.5 hour till the next reservation was coming. We were more than happy to oblige for a chance to taste whatever was making the smoky meat aroma that was wafting out the open windows.
We took off our shoes, deftly made our way to our counter tatami seats and took a moment to take in the menu and venue. There was so much going on:
- Behind the counter, chefs were grilling
- Sake was being poured beyond capacity
- Staff were navigating tight spaces to get plates of skewers to people
- Takes visa / master card
- No splitting of bill
The whole affair was lively with energy coming from every corner of the space. Someone was talking, cooking, moving, pouring, eating, laughing or something! And if you go here, you’ll be one of them.
A Lot of Counter Action
What to Get!?
Sitting there, we had the hardest time of choosing what to eat. There were plenty of options fitting many discerning tastes and any budget (ranging between 300 to 500 yen). They had a variety of skewers, small dishes and even a skewers sampler.
With little encouragement, we went with several orders of the the sampler platter and delighted in the coming of our grilled variety.
There’s a Wall of Sake
Sake and More Sake!
In the meantime we taste tested a few different sake offerings, opting to go with their house dry option. Typically I have more of a sweeter tooth, but this time around, the dry finish won me over. I wonder if I’m becoming sophisticated or developing my palate….
Or maybe I just never had good sake before?
They brought over small wooden boxes and then placed the sake glasses in each one. Filling the glasses, the sake over flowed, filling the masu wooden boxes. This Japanese hospitality custom, I hear, is a sign of the restaurant’s wealth and generosity.
As we emptied our glasses, we eventually drank the remaining sake in the masu, which imparted a slightly woody flavor to it. It’s too bad that this isn’t common practice everywhere by everyone.
3 Sake Glasses in Masu Boxes
Yakitori and More!
A few rounds of sake later, our meal came out overwhelming us with it’s sheer volume and variety. There were so many delicious looking skewers, I wasn’t sure where to start:
- Hotate | Scallop
- Avocado | Abokado
- Reba | Chicken Liver
- Bonjiri | Chicken Tail
- Butabara | Pork Belly
- Toriniku | Chicken Meat
- Gyutan | Beef Tongue
We all dove in, devouring all that we were before us. Nothing was left to hint at the mountain of food that was there moments ago. They were all fresh and properly seasoned, accompanied with the appropriate mustard and wasabi that brought out their flavors even more.
More Grilled Skewers
And Even More Skewers
Fun Times For All
It’s great to know that such places exist, open to the early morning hours offering everyone grilled and fermented tastiness. I look forward to coming back again with more friends for more good times!
And so should you!
We Got Photobombed
- Japan, 〒106-0032 Tōkyō-to, Minato-ku, Roppongi, 5 Chome−9−１７ 藤森ビル
- 〒106-0032 東京都港区六本木５丁目９−１７ 藤森ビル
- +81 3-3405-2585
- Street View
Where do you like to go for yakitori in Tokyo?!?!?