Tohoku Restaurants

Tohoku is a great place for fresh food, whether from the fields, mountains, forests, or seas. Restaurants range from local sake shacks to upscale sushi bars and steak houses, and dress may be street-casual to office attire. Rarely will it be formal. Menus may not always be in English, but you can often find window displays full of plastic representations of the menu. Credit cards are fine in cities, but they are not always accepted in the countryside, so bring along enough cash. In many restaurants you'll take your shoes off at the entry and place them in a cubicle.

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  • 1. Akita Kawabata Isariya Sakaba

    $$$

    This restaurant lives up to its promise of "All of Akita in one building." Delicious, unique regional dishes such as the highly recommended pickle selection...Read More

  • 2. Azuma-ya Soba

    $$

    Hearty soba is made from plentiful northern buckwheat, and Azuma-ya is easily Morioka's most famous place to eat these healthful noodles. The second level is...Read More

  • 3. Maruhachi Yatarazuke

    $$

    Housed in a converted warehouse in the Maruhachi Yatarazuke complex, the Komian Maruhachi restaurant serves traditional Yamagata dishes such as soba noodles and imoni potato...Read More

  • 4. Aji Tasuke Honten

    $$ | Aoba-ku

    This birthplace of Sendai's famous gyutan (grilled beef tongue) proudly serves excellent and inexpensive meals. It is a very casual environment but can get crowded...Read More

  • 5. Al-ché-cciano

    $$$$

    Acclaimed executive chef and owner Okuda Masayuki prepares Italian dishes that are totally original and unique and reflect the region. The style of Italian comes...Read More

  • 6. Anzu

    $$$

    Avant-garde performances of live shamisen—an instrument similar to the banjo—by promising young performers and seasoned experts are the main attraction here. Arrive early to sit...Read More

  • 7. Banya Nagasawa

    $$$$

    When you slide open the door to what looks like a little house, you may notice the fish tanks and the freezer packed with flounder,...Read More

  • 8. Beko Masamune

    $$ | Aoba-ku

    Fearless, meat-loving gourmets should stop at this slightly hidden gem. The use of wood in the decor create a relaxed atmosphere where you can focus...Read More

  • 9. Go Shu In Sen

    $$ | Aoba-ku

    This good spot for cheap seafood and sake offers can't-beat lunch deals. Very casual, it's also a great place to sit at the counter and...Read More

  • 10. Hide-zushi

    $$$$

    You're in a major seafood city, and if you want some of the best of what is available in these cold waters, this is the...Read More

  • 11. Inaniwa Sato Yosuke

    $$

    Noodles can only be called Inaniwa Udon if they are produced in Inaniwa. Established in 1860, this noodle empire has many branches across the Tohoku...Read More

  • 12. Ippachi-zushi

    $$$

    What was once an early-20th-century warehouse is now a modern sushi restaurant. The fish here is fresh, and the price is right (and a clear...Read More

  • 13. Jiraiya

    $$$$ | Aoba-ku

    In its lively neighborhood, a curtain next to a big red paper lantern leads to this inviting eatery where kinki (deepwater white fish) are carefully...Read More

  • 14. Kikufuji

    $$

    Tasty, healthful, and authentic dishes from the region are Kikufuji's specialty. Excellent local varieties of sake are available. They can provide you with a menu...Read More

  • 15. Michinoku Nishimura

    $$

    It would be hard to walk out of this restaurant hungry. The restaurant has mostly seating on tatami mats on the floor, but there are...Read More

  • 16. Mimasu Sushi and Bento

    $$

    The highlights here are good sushi, tempura, and donburi—bowls with cutlets, tempura, or chicken on top of rice. In this old-fashioned establishment where typical Japanese...Read More

  • 17. Mitsu-ishi

    $$$

    Crowded with locals, Mitsu-ishi has a convivial atmosphere and dishes that appeal to everyone. If you're in the mood for drinks and some finger food,...Read More

  • 18. Mitsuya Honten Soba Restaurant

    $$

    A short walk from JR Yamagata Station will put you in front of some fine and slightly chewy Yamagata soba noodles. Everything is good here,...Read More

  • 19. Pyon Pyon Sha Morioka Ekimae Ten

    $$

    Reimen—a dish of clear noodles served cold with spicy kimchi, hard-boiled egg, watermelon, and a slice of beef—is a Korean delicacy that has become one...Read More

  • 20. Restaurant Yamazaki

    $$$$

    Try it for yourself and you'll see why people come here from all over Honshu for a cup of the ringo no reisei supu (cold...Read More

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