Places to eat in Osaka

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    by Ewingjr98
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Most Viewed Restaurants in Osaka

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    Maru Joe: It's All About the Ramen

    by divnivan Written Jun 30, 2014

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    When we told our friend, CD, that we were heading to Japan, he commented “I understand it’s all about the ramen.” As a wine sommelier and aficionado of fine food, he nailed it. Perhaps he remembered the very first Japanese spaghetti western, Tampopo, where the hero helps a widow owner of a noodle stand make the perfect soup.

    Indeed, it is all about the ramen, and tales of the perfect noodle soup abound. One man spent 200 hours and 40 pounds of bones trying to figure out how to make tonkotsu ramen broth. A Japanese-American has a blog solely devoted to his personal ramen quest. A New Yorker living in Osaka has been reviewing ramen shops for us English-speaking types since 2011 and claims to have catalogued and reviewed more than 500 places. For those who read Japanese, there’s the Ramen Database, RamenDB (like IMDB except for ramen places).

    Osaka is the foodie destination in Japan, and is known for having created original Japanese dishes. As we walk or bike about the city, it seems like there’s at least one ramen-ya (shop) on every block and usually more. Following that New Yorker’s advice, we discovered Maru Joe’s.

    It’s a little difficult to find, and even when you do, you’ll probably have to wait in line outside. It’s down this tiny alley that doesn’t look at all promising from either side, and yet, there are several restaurants in the alley. There are a couple of benches in the alley for waiting at Maru Joe, but only one of them is covered for rainy days. The actual address in Japanese is 〒542-0075 大阪府大阪市中央区難波千日前6-16 but google maps will get you there if you use “6-16 Nanbasennichimae, Chūō-ku, Ōsaka-shi, Ōsaka-fu, Japan”.

    The restaurant is nothing more than a lunch counter with maybe 10 chairs. Behind the counter, Joe cooks up the broth for customers and boils the noodles to order. Unlike many restaurants in Japan, smoking is not allowed in Maru Joe which is a big plus for us.

    The specialty of the house is called, of course, Maru Joe. It’s a tonkotsu (pork based) broth, decorated with a few thick slices of delicious roast pork and a pile of shaved green onions. The broth is nothing short of amazing. It’s creamy and smooth with a full flavor, a wonderful mouth feel and a delicious lingering taste. The noodles are perfectly cooked with just a little resistance to the teeth.

    We also tried the soy based soup one day because by the time we arrived for lunch, the Maru Joe soup was already sold out. It was good, with a peppery tang, and filling with the noodles and softly boiled egg (which, we heard, is only offered on rainy days), but not quite the same as the specialty of the house.

    Next time you’re in Osaka, try Maru Joe’s ramen-ya. You’ll be glad you did. Maru Joe is only open for lunch and for dinner, not in between; and closed on Wednesday.

    This original of this review, with the pictures and links appears on our blog:

    Favorite Dish: The Maru Joe! Tonkotsu (pork based) broth, decorated with a few thick slices of delicious roast pork and a pile of shaved green onions.

    The Maru Joe down this alley
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    Ganko: Stubborn? I don't think so

    by toonsarah Written Dec 1, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Apparently "ganko" means stubborn - an odd name for a restaurant and one we could see no reason for.

    We chose this small restaurant in the arcades behind our hotel on the strength of the English menu available that was advertised outside, the attractive appearance and the presence of plenty of locals. These were all good signs, and we were not to be disappointed with our choice.

    Seating is at the counter or Western-style tables and chairs – we chose the latter, in a nice booth from where we could still watch the sushi chefs working behind the counter and the kimono-clad waitresses.

    Favorite Dish: We both had the tempura salmon with tartare sauce - a great choice. It had lovely light tempura batter coating a really good piece of salmon, and while the sauce was not like ours (a milder flavour and with egg in it), it was tasty. As a side dish we shared a Japanese radish salad which came with a nice dressing (with a hint of ginger) and fish flakes – again, good stuff! This was a relatively light meal so we had room for dessert and both chose a tempting-looking sundae from the picture menu - a scoop each of vanilla ice cream and berry sorbet, and frozen berries.

    With a large draft beer each, our bill was just under 4,000¥ - not bad for a light but tasty meal. The restaurant seems to be part of a small Osaka chain with three branches in the city – as well as the one we visited in Umeda there’s another on Dōtonbori and one in Kyobashi near the castle. There are also branches in Kyoto and Ginza I think, based on the website below.

    Next tip: a night in an Irish pub

    Ganko entrance Sushi chefs Waitress Delicious salmon Dessert

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    Cookhouse - Kintetsu Namba Station, Osaka

    by Ewingjr98 Written Oct 1, 2013

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Cookhouse is a bakery located in many Osaka locations including Kintetsu Namba Station where we stopped for breakfast. We strolled through the pastries and grabbed three: their milk bread, something called a young wassan (or yanguwassan), and a dolphin-shaped pastry, along with coffee, for about 1,000 Yen.

    The milk break is a small square of bread with a thin layer of light custard cream--tasty but small. The young wassan was a crispy pastry filled with a large amount of thick, heavy, sweet cream--flaky and good, but too sweet. The dolphin-shaped pastry was also light and flaky, but not too sweet. A good, light breakfast for two, conveniently located next to our train.

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    Public Bar Yebisuya - Namba Station Area

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Oct 1, 2013

    Public Bar Yebisuya (at least that's how Google translates their name, 大衆酒場 えびす屋) is a wonderful, friendly kushiage bar in Central Osaka near Nambu Station. We ducked in here on a Wednesday evening for a late snack before heading back to our hotel. We glanced at the menu on the window and saw a few kushiage and yakitori combinations, so we knew ordering would be easy, with our limited Japanese abilities. Luckily, they quickly brought us a few English menus, so we had a better idea of what we were getting. We ordered a beer (250 Yen), and we decided to get a set of 10 kushiage (1,280 Yen) and 6 yakitori (500 Yen). The kushiage was excellent, and it included shrimp, fish, a sausage, a quail egg, a slice of lotus root, and other odds and ends. The yakitori included hearts, chicken, chicken with leeks, beef, chicken skins and more. Like most kushiage, our meal also came with fresh cabbage and a huge tub of dipping sauce in a tin container ("only dip once," reminded both the menu and one of the staff members!)

    After the Japanese customers left, and we finished our meal, the owner and staff became very friendly and social, talking about our homes and movie stars. Lots of fun, and our bill was only 2,400 Yen for two people.

    Kushiage (串揚げ), also known as Kushikatsu (串カツ), is a Japanese-style of deep-fried meat, seafood or vegetable on a small bamboo stick, dipped in panko and deep fried. In Japanese, kushi (串) refers to items strung together on skewers, while age (揚げ) means deep fried and katsu means cutlet of meat. Kushiage may be served plain or with a variety of sauces such as tonkatsu. This style of cooking is said to have originated in Osaka.

    Favorite Dish: Located just northeast of

    Kushiage Yakitori

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    Manzana Cafe Bar: International Cuisine

    by Rabbityama Written Oct 17, 2012

    Manzana is a restaurant serving a variety of international dishes. The menu has a wide variety of dishes. There are French foods and appetizers, like breads and cheese, Italian pastas and pizzas, Mexican burritos and nachos, etc. They also have a variety of drinks.

    I've had the fruit pizza, burrito, and nachos here, all of which were delicious! It can be difficult to find Mexican food in Japan so I like to try it if I find it. Most people will probably have to order two dishes to feel full, because the portions are small. Many people come with friends and split some appetizers along with ordering their own dish.

    Although the food is delicious, I think it is important to mention that the restaurant is located in the Doyama-cho area, which is fine during lunch hours but in the evening, this is where you'll find many of Osaka's host/hostess bars, night clubs, bars, "girl bars", and gay venues. It gets quite seedy, so it's not an appropriate place to bring children, but for adults who are out in Osaka enjoying the night scene or who simply want to come and eat some international foods, it's a great option.

    Manzana Cafe Bar
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    La Cantinetta: Great Italian in Osaka (must have reservation)

    by SfumatoPants Written Jun 29, 2011

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Tourists may not want to go for Italian when in Japan, but if you've been here a while you begin to crave something different. There are many Italian restaurants to be found on Osaka, many are genuinely good and most are mediocre. La Cantinetta is a standout jewel on that list. The food is carefully prepared with obvious pride and creativity. The atmosphere is friendly and casual - this place is about a good glass of wine, excellent food, and warm company.
    Definitely worth a visit, you will not be disappointed, but be sure to make a reservation. Although off the beaten track, those in the know fill this small establishment quickly on a nightly basis.

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    Eterna: All-you-can-eat-Brazilian

    by Hewer Updated May 27, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    In this restaurant, the serving staff bring vast chunks of freshly roasted meat and carve it directly onto your plate. They have beef, chicken, lamb and also an extensive salad bar. Unlike other Brazilian buffets I have been to, the salad bar here was fantastic and it was a real struggle resisting one last trip up to the buffet :-)

    They play Brazilian music and the restaurant is tastefully decorated with South American paraphenalia. The ex-pat Brazilian staff are friendly and love to ham it up for the customers.

    Favorite Dish: The buffet costs 3700 yen for 2 hours (1350 yen for children). You can add all-you-can-drink plans from 1300 yen per person as well.

    It's open from 6pm till midnight Mon-Fri; 5pm till midnight on weekends. Last order is at 10:30pm.


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    pamukkale: turkish food japan

    by hebaemam Updated Apr 24, 2011

    i didnt a dish but i tried a sandwich.
    despite it was cheap and tasty i would be disappoiting to say that the meat amount was veryyy little in the sandwich, and so i count it expensive t pay 700 en.
    if i would go again i would stress for this point, the meat amount.
    also the taste was not that turkish.
    but after all for those who need halal food then this is an option
    he have pc and internet for free on each table
    he have shisha for those who do smoke it
    and he is very freindly

    Favorite Dish: i tried one sandwich grilled meat

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    by Gili_S Updated Apr 4, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Its a bit difficult to figure out the restaurants names but from the visiting card I manage to get this. So this is a nice local restaurant situated inside a complex of many restaurants and we chose this one as we notice there are many locals eating inside. The waiter was able to speak rather good English and to explain to us what is on the menu. As usual in Japan we had many small dishes of different items, fish, chicken, noodle etc. All was excellent and with the excellent local Kirin Beer (Image 2) we were happy to pay the bill and proceed to the next spot :)

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    shakeys pizza, buffet: dinning at shinsaibashi

    by hebaemam Written Oct 4, 2010

    cheap open buffet,
    just fills the need and satisfy the taste
    have non stop delecious pizza, macarni, rice and carry, potatos and salad that plus 2 times drink
    all for 1000 en or 10 dollars
    so its really good offer
    p.s its in the 1st floor but the entrance in the ground floor

    Favorite Dish: pizza tuna

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    bab al hayat: halal trukish food japan

    by hebaemam Updated Oct 3, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    turkish open buffet in tempozan harbor land mall.
    there is a take away sandwich and launch box in teh first floor. each cost 500 en which is good price comparing to the size.
    taste is fair compared to the expert dishes i ate in turkey istanbul
    also they serve turkish ice cream bouza for 300 en. i love it but still taste is not typical turkish

    the 2nd floor restaurant is for 1700 en.

    Favorite Dish: i used the take away service but you can check the site they have details of everthing.

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    Ryugu: Awesome cheap sushi!

    by schwein Written Aug 29, 2010

    I definitely recommend this place!

    Yummy, and cheap.
    The lineup to get into this place was always ridiculous, full of locals...

    You sit at a counter, and pick what you want off a conveyor belt that wraps around the restaurant.

    50 Yen per plate. Most other restaurants I saw around Osaka were all 100 Yen per plate.

    Favorite Dish: Everything was good. Excellent quality.
    Ended up going back a few times.

    Ryugu Ryugu Ryugu
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    Tosabori Sandwich Bar: Delicious Cuban Food

    by Rabbityama Written Jul 17, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    A small restaurant specializing in Cuban and Cuban-inspired foods, particularly sandwiches. Although Osaka is a large city, it is still difficult to find Caribbean and Latin American food, so if you're in the area and craving it, Tosabori Sandwich Bar is worth a stop! They also have other types of sanwiches inspired by other parts of the world.

    Favorite Dish: The Cuban quesadilla is delicious! They have salsa to dip it in, but you have to ask for it if you want it, because Japanese don't dip their quesadilla in salsa.

    Tosabori Sandwich Bar
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    Dalloyau: Dallying Around for Cakes & Pies

    by arianne_1504 Written Jun 26, 2010

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    This little french boutique specializes in exquisite chocolates, cakes and pastries. You can dine in the restaurant or take a little treat back to your hotel room. There are numerous Dalloyau outlets around Japan.

    Favorite Dish: To be honest, anything from Dalloyau will be exquisite!

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    Crape Ojisan: A Crepe Time was had by All

    by arianne_1504 Written Jun 26, 2010

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    Crepes, crepes and more crepes, sweet, sour and savoury. Definitely a must trip while in Japan.

    Favorite Dish: The chocolate, almond cream crepe was abslutely awesome. I paid Y460 (approx AUD6) for this little piece of heaven.

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