Cafe Gout Temps is a really unique and odd place located near Lake Yamanaka, not far from Mount Fuji. From the outside this restaurant resembles a poorly constructed European castle, but from the inside, it looks like a haunted house. We arrived in a fierce rainstorm, adding to the eerie atmosphere. The dollhouse "musium" upstairs was also deserted and creepy.
We sat next to the kitchen/bar where the owner was jamming to the Beatles. In fact, the menu was pasted onto an old vinyl record, probably an old Paul McCartney album. The menu was also entirely in Japanese, but the owner was kind enough to translate the main sections of the menu: pizza, dessert, and drinks.
We decided to order a few drinks and we picked a pizza, which the owner informed us was very thin. When the pizza arrived, it was about as big around as a vinyl record and a similar thickness. It was definitely homemade and not very good for 1,300 Yen.
Address: １０２０-１ Hirano Yamanakako, Minamitsuru District, Yamanashi Prefecture 401-0502, Japan
Our hotel offered inclusive a full traditional Japanese dinner and we wasn't sure how this going to be. But then we realize that this was a great deal with friendly table service and excellent food. Our waiter was able to tell us in English the food details and also some instructions how to eat it LOL :)))
Favorite Dish: Check out the 5 photos here to see the food but unfortunately I cannot really tell what we were eating. I can tell that with drink with the food excellent cold beer and green tea for dessert.
the local japanese restaurant of the Resort Class Hotel Regina in the lake kawaguchiko area. most of the mount fuji day tours w/ set lunch included pass by here and take their set bento lunch at this Jukai Japanese restaurant inside Hotel Regina. The Jukai Japanese resto has a simple design and the menu is limited, the Bento Box inluded in the meal consists of miso soup, plain japanese sticky rice, 1 piece of tuna and salmon sashimi each, a chiken yakitori stick, 2 pieces of ebi tempura and 2 pieces of tamago and 2 pieces of kamaboko fish fillets. the drinks are not included buy you can order soda or iced tea or lemonade for 300 yen a glass.
Favorite Dish: the bento meal was deelicous! but sadly the servings are quite small that my tummy was not filled hehehehe.
....Janet had a hankering for hamburgers just as we drove by the Moose Hills Burger restaurant, so we made a U-turn and pulled in -- good decision #1. Then we were greeted humbly by the owner's wife, who begged our forgiveness, but the hamburger restaurant only had one remaining bun. We forgave and decided to eat at Moose Hills Burger anyway -- good decision #2. Then we asked the owner's wife about the Canadian decor -- good decision #3. All of these decisions led to a delicious meal, much of which was organic, and an interesting time chatting with the staff and the other patrons, mostly about their dogs!
....Yes, Moose Hill Burgers is full of dogs. The owners let Anika and Tina roam around the spotlessly maintained wood plank floors, and guests bring in all different breeds, in their natural state or dressed in costumes. They sit at tables or socialize with tails wagging, but they are all well-behaved. And since we had conversed with te owners wife about Canada, Hawaii and other things, we felt at ease moving around the log cabin restaurant meeting everyone. We had a blast, even if we never did figure out what breed that black dog was.
Favorite Dish: ...The cuisine is mostly hamburgers, though I had a taco-rice salad (very Canadian!) since there was only one bun to be had and Janet had the burger craving. She had a very delicious gorganzola and mushroom burger, which was juicy and tasty! We had started with an organic garden salad and we each had a delicious homemade dessert, too. Although the menu seemed simple, everything was done with high quality ingredients and delicious.
When you are at the Moto-hakone bus terminal and Hakone Sightseeing Cruise jetty, there is a small roadside store selling grilled squid Japanese style. A lot of people are buying the squids from this store and you can check it out. I wanted to buy but was in a rush to catch the bus, so in the end did not do it :)
If you are looking for food while visiting the Hakone region, there is a row of Japanese food stores along the waterfront area of Moto-hakone town near to the Hakone Sightseeing Cruise jetty. These shops serve traditional Japanese food such as udon, sushi, tempura etc. I tried their fried prawn tempura udon which cost about 6,000 yen including the green tea.
For those of you who are on a budget and/or want to grab some food and drinks to bring along your trip, there is a big 7 Eleven convenient store at Moto-hakone town just across the road to the bus terminal and Hakone Sightseeing Cruise jetty.
Just like in Tokyo and other parts of Japan, there are many drinks dispensing machines at the various towns of the Hakone region, especially at tourist attractions and transport stations e.g. train stations, boat jetties etc. The machines sell a variety of cold and hot drinks, including coffee, orange juice and soft drinks. One can costs about US$1.
If you are staying at Lakeside Inn Charlotte (see my tip in "accomodation" section), then you should have your meals at the small cosy restaurant here. Breakfast is included in the room charges and it consists of very good pastries, tea or coffee. As for lunch or dinner, you should try the Japanese set meal which is really good and the dishes change everyday (cost about 20,000-25,000 yen). Usually there is very fresh sashimi (salmon, tuna, scallop etc), king crab, fish, tempura, rice, miso soup, meat (e.g. pork chicken) etc. The meal is also very filling and is really worth the money considering the variety and quality of the food. I enjoyed my meals here :)
Food was very good. As so the atmosphere. It was cold outside but it was so warm and cozy inside that we did not want to leave. Glad japanese young people and no tourist except us.