Monday, December 14, 2015

Tokyo 2015: Daikokuya Tempura, Asakusa

Daikokuya restaurant offers the yummiest and biggest prawn tempura I've ever seen. I kid you not, the tail and head of the prawns were poking out from under the bowl lid when it was served.

I first learnt about this place from Night Owls Cinematic's vlog (link here) and since I was staying in the neighbourhood where it was at, Asakusa, it warrant a visit from us. Daikokuya was located very near the famous Sensoji temple and just off the shopping row of Nakamise. It has two branches,the original and the new bigger branch which was just a row over to accommodate its growing popularity amongst the locals and tourists. Google maps took us to the old branch which was closed during lunch when we visited but there were clear signs directing us to the new branch nearby.

Because we were early (11am), we didn't have to wait to be seated and even got to pick our table at the tatami section next to the window. When we left at 12pm however, we found that a queue had formed in the waiting area. Mind you, Daikokuya was two-storey to accommodate the crowd and for a queue to form even before lunch time, spoke of how popular this place was.

Tourists need not worry for they also offered an English menu just by asking "Eigo no menyuu ga arimasu ka?" which means "Do you have an English menu?" A very helpful sentence to remember in Japan along with 'where is the toilet?' (otearai/toire doko desu ka?) and 'Excuse me' (Sumimasen desu).

Our orders were taken promptly by the lady owner and it was about a 20 minutes wait for our food to arrive and when it did, well, we knew it was worth the time and the money. The tendon set came with a generous portion of soft, fluffy pipping hot steamed white rice and four prawn tempuras. Daikokuya's version of tempura was slightly unique as the batter was a little darker in colour as it was fried in sesame oil and drizzled with dark soy sauce. While a bit soggy than the usual tempura, the batter was bursting with sinful flavours of sweet and salty which complimented the juicy crunchiness of the massive prawn inside.

I remember my travel mates kept gushing how amazingly big and delicious it was. Your welcome, boys. Besides prawns, their tempura also comes in vegetables and other seafood instead but their Ebi-tendon remains one of their bestsellers for a reason. Prices varies on set and ranges from 1,800yen onwards.

Daikokuya restaurant 
Address: 1-38-10 Asakusa, Taiko-li
Tel: +81 3 3844 1111 (for reservation: 03-3844-2222)
Opening hours: Sun to Fri: 11.10am – 8.30pm
                          Sat: 11:30am – 9pm
Nearest Station: 8-minute walk from Asakusa Station on the Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Toei Asakusa Line,Tobu Isezaki Line and Tsukuba Express(TX).

Read about:
24 Hours on Mount Fuji in a Typhoon Part 1 and 2
First Cabin Capsule Hotel, Haneda Airport review
Khaosan Tokyo Origami, Asakusa review
Day 1 - Things to do and eat at Asakusa at Night link
Day 2 - Tokyo Imperial Palace and Ichiran Shibuya link 
Day 3 - Harajuku and Akihabara link
Day 4 - Last Day in Japan link
Daikokuya Tempura restaurant, Asakusa review
Artnia Square Enix cafe, Higashi-Shinjuku review

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