Updated: April 17, 2018
0 Bookmark

Kawachiya: An Unagi Restaurant With a 250 Year History!

Kawachiya is a restaurant located on a very nice, old shopping street in Shibamata, a neighborhood in the eastern part of Tokyo. It specializes in freshwater fish, and it's unagi (eel) dishes are particularly popular. We went to Kawachiya to see how the popular unagi dishes are made. The restaurant was established some 250 years ago, so we were fortunate enough to witness the very traditional, authentic way of unagi cooking!

Feel free to follow favy!


To get to Kawachiya we traveled by train to the Shibamata Station located in Katsushikaku-ku, in the east of Tokyo. It takes about 1 hour to get there by train from the Shinjuku Station, or about 40 minutes from the Ueno Station.
The restaurant is about a 3-minute walk from the station. To get there you get to walk through an amazing traditional shopping arcade. There are few of this kind of streets still remaining in Tokyo. Like many shops around it, the restaurant has a beautiful traditional Japanese architecture and many lanterns hang from the eaves. The place must be even more beautiful at night.
The restaurant is really spacious and peaceful. In the back, there are large windows from which you can see a Japanese-style interior courtyard.

Preparing the Unagi

We were invited in the kitchen so get a first-hand look at how our unagi was done.
At first, the unagi is tenderized by being placed in a wooded steamer for a few minutes.
Holding the unagi with wooden skewers, the chef then dipped the tenderized eel in a tare sauce (a thick sweet soy sauce).
The next step was to broil the unagi until its exterior becomes dark brown and crisp. It was re-dipped in tare a few times while being broiled.

The Dish

As is often the case for eel dishes, they are served in a rectangular box. This dish is called unaju.
The two pieces of eel were placed on a bed of rice. We had the first taste and it did not disappoint! The outer part was made slightly crisp by the broiling with the tare and the inside was really soft. It had just the right balance of sweetness and saltiness.
Next, we tried it with some sansho spice. Sansho is a Japanese spice that is often used on unagi. It is made from a citrus tree and the taste is lemony and spicy. It makes a pleasant tingling sensation in your mouth. But be careful not to put too much, as the taste can be overpowering.
With the unaju, we were also served this simple yet delicious soup which contains fried tofu and the eel's liver. There was also a small serving of Japanese pickles and green tea. All these elements worked perfectly together to make an amazing dining experience. The unaju set is sold for 2,800 yen (small size), 3,300 yen (medium) and 4,000 yen (large).


Unagi is a kind of Japanese delicacy you should definitely try. It is so delicious when made properly. Kawachiya knows how to make it just right! We highly recommend you visit this restaurant. What's more, Kawachiya is located on a very quaint, old shopping street really worth visiting!
Japanese food culture enthusiast. Love to explore new areas and discover local specialties.

Trending Posts


NoMad Grill Lounge - Nagatacho, Tokyo : Heavenly Juicy Wagyu Steaks!


BACCA GRILL&FARMERS - Shinjuku, Tokyo : Bite Off The Gigantic Piece Of Meat!!


Must See! Tuna Demolition Show At Maguro Shoten, Shinjuku!


J.S Curry has a new location in Shibuya! Serves different kinds of curry too!


Kitakata Ramen Bannai - The Ultimate Ramen For All Meat Lovers!

More Trending Posts

Recommended For You!


Aged-Beef, Hand-Made Pasta And 100 Types Of Wine At Trattoria Cordiale In Ningyocho, Tokyo


Kitakata Ramen Bannai - The Ultimate Ramen For All Meat Lovers!


MK Restaurant - Reasonably Priced, All-You-Can-Eat Shabu Shabu & Yam Cha in Tokyo


Barliminal -Fun Projections on Your Cake!? Best Place For Birthdays in Roppongi, Tokyo!


Niku Baru pippi, Tokyo - Amazing Beef Dishes


Featured Posts

Halal Restaurants In Japan!

Things to do in Japan in all regions!

Exploring Yokocho Alleys: a Guide to the Back Streets!

More Features


Doutor Coffee's 2018 Special Summer Menu In Japan!

Jun 16, Sat ~

Trending Tags