Japanese Food in Bangkok
Bangkok is one of the best cities to eat Japanese food outside Japan
If you hadn’t noticed it yet but there is a huge Japanese food culture in Bangkok. From Yakinikus and Shabu-Shabu to Izakayas and high-end Omakase, you can find all sorts of Japanese restaurants spread across the city. Afterall, Bangkok has always been a foodie haven for all sorts of cuisines and Japanese food has taken the city by storm.
Thais, international expats and Japanese are all known to frequent one of countless establishments.
So, where does one begin to start looking for the best or most authentic Japanese restaurants in town?
Before we can answer this, you should probably learn about the types of cuisines and what to expect there.
Types of Japanese Cuisine
Yakiniku, literally translates to “grilled meat,” and it is one of the most popular types of cuisines in Japan and in Thailand. In restaurants, you will find grilling or barbecue griddles on which different kinds of meat and vegetables can be cooked.
Izakayas are small Japanese restaurant or bars where a variety of small but generally inexpensive dishes are served alongside alcoholic drinks. Many locals and expats frequent Izakayas after work for snacks and drinks.
Omakase restaurants involve formal dining experiences where the chef is in charge of the meal and create elegant dishes using seasonal and finest ingredients.
Another word for hotpot where thinly sliced meat and vegetables are boiled in water or broth and served with dipping sauces.
Now that we have the main cuisines covered, let’s look at a few popular as well as some underrated Japanese restaurants around Bangkok.
If you are looking for Japanese spots where all the cool kids hang out, here are a few of them.
Kenshin is a popular Izakaya restaurant with multiple outlets across the city. It is a trendy watering hole that locals and expats frequent after work for chilled Asahi draft beer and an evening meal. Beers come in 4 sizes, each quite inexpensive and in different flavors such as original, lavender, popcorn and more.
Isao is along-time favorite for Bangkokians for their quality fusion sushi and other tapas style Japanese dishes. Bookings are recommended as Isao gets quite busy each and every day
Be sure to try their dragon roll!
Another franchised Japanese joint in Bangkok that locals and Japanese expats like to eat after work. Ebisu Shoten has over 200 dishes on its menu with the likes of sushi, sashimi, tempura, ramen, kushikatsu, hotpots and much more.
Other than food, at Ebisu, you can enjoy drinking from noon until night with craft beers starting at 78 Baht or highballs for just 88 Baht.
An authentic restaurant straight from Tokyo opened its doors in Bangkok serving up Yakitori (chicken skewers) using all the parts of a chicken.
ToriTama gets packed everyday so advanced reservations are recommended.
When done eating (or even before), you can hop on over to its sister restaurant and sake bar - Orihara Shoten for a great selection of sake and shochu.
Although inconspicuous, Sushi Misaki is a hidden little restaurant at Rainhill, Sukhumvit 47. If you are looking for a quaint dine-in Omakase experience, definitely give this place a try.
However, after its success and increase in popularity, they also have branches at Asok and Silom.
One of Bangkok’s first Japanese restaurant, Hanaya 1976 serves up to 200people with a variety of Japanese cuisine such as hotpots, sushi, soba, katsu, and much more. Check out their menu before visiting.
KiSara combines authentic Japanese cuisine with fine dining in a seamless and attentive way. Located within the Conrad Hotel in Phloen Chit area, KiSara uses top quality ingredients to create delicious sushi, sashimi, teppanyaki and kaiseki dishes.
There are tons of other hole-in-the-wall Japanese restaurants all around Bangkok, especially in Silom and Sukhumvit that are worth trying. They look uninviting at first and easy to miss but have so much to offer when it comes to authentic Japanese cuisines. The best way is to walkaround your area and take a look at the menu (which are usually placed outside)and decide for yourself if it is worth dining at. Most are.
Known for its consistency over the years, Uomasa is a reliable Japanese restaurant. Located in Uomasa, the restaurant attracts amore high-end clientele, aiming specifically at the purists and Japanese expats.
As they use the freshest ingredients and notable dishes, it is slightly more expensive than what you would pay at other establishments.,
It is unlikely that you have never heard of Zuma as they area globally recognized restaurant brand that has branches in over 20 cities, worldwide. The Bangkok outlet is no different with its stylish design, stellar service, and top-notch F&B.
Considered to be a contemporary Japanese restaurant that serves all kinds of authentic and fusion food. While it is known to be fine dining, Zuma is also a crowd-favorite and extremely popular with Thais and expats.
Tsu Nami is actually two restaurants – Tsu and Nami but both are located side by side at the JW Marriot Hotel in Sukhumvit soi 4. Tsu is a sushi bar while Nami is a teppanyaki grill spot.
Tsu Nami is considered one of the best restaurants in Bangkok serving up highly fresh and quality Japanese food outside of Japan.
Known as a modern Izakaya restaurant, Jua creates a memorable fine-dining experience with its food and drinks.
What was once an illegal gambling den in Charoen Krung Road alleyway is now this impeccably-designed and trendy restaurant.
Rated as #1 on TripAdvisor for the best Japanese restaurant in Bangkok, Benihana is known for their excellent Teppanyaki style cooking. A visit to any of its global branches means that you will get the same level of quality and consistency every time.
It is more than just delicious food here. It’s also an entertaining experience with a private chef cooking, in style, some juicy dishes for you. They even invite you to cook with them, even though sometimes it is as simple as flipping and cracking an egg over the iron griddle.
Out of the two branches in Bangkok, be sure to go to the one at the Riverside Plaza.
BONUS: Japanese shopping malls & stores
DonkiMall - Vibrant shopping complex with 5 floors of Japan-based stores, restaurants & entertainment, located in Thonglor and a new outlet in MBK.
Nihonmura Mall - Small, local mall filled with Japanese restaurants serving everything from ramen to sushi. Also located in Thonglor.
Nihonmachi Mall – a small Japanese mall near K-village, Sukhumvit Soi 26.
Daiso – cheap store found in many malls with all sorts of quirky and interesting items and products from Japan.
Makotoya – Japanese grocery store in Sukhumvit 49.