Torikatsu Chicken might just be your best find in Shibuya, Tokyo.
The nondescript katsu restaurant is our newest favourite katsu place in Tokyo, and it was by no means “stumbled upon”. It is one of those super hidden joint that wouldn’t simply “appear in front of you”. You have to know about it to find it, and finding it on its own is a challenge; we’d like to think of that as part of the experience.
Torikatsu Chicken redefines ‘hidden gem’ altogether, and its very affordable katsu sets—starting from ¥650 or S$8—make it all too appealing. We are so going back to Torikatsu Chicken every time we are in Tokyo.
A good tonkatsu is one that is deep-fried to golden brown, and texturised with crumbs, with the layers of meat intricate yet not overly oily, and is so good on its own that you might have forgotten it has other accompanying sauces like mustard and the sweet tonkatsu sauce. The meal is completed with miso soup, pickles, a huge pile of cabbage, and hot steaming rice.
Besides tonkatsu, there are variations such as Katsudon, pork cutlet with egg and onions on rice; Katsu Sandon, a tonkatsu sandwich; and Katsu-Kare, tonkatsu drizzled with Japanese curry. No matter which version, tonkatsu ranks as one of Japan’s favourite comfort food.
Which is the best tonkatsu in Tokyo? This is a constant debate among travellers and locals as the city has no shortage of good tonkatsuya. When we were in Tokyo recently, we went on a quest to find our favourite tonkatsu, and this is a list of the best Tonkatsu Restaurants in Tokyo.