Updated: September 18, 2019
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Hayashi in Akasaka: Quite possibly the best oyakodon in Tokyo

Akasaka

Looking for a cheap and delicious lunch in Akasaka? Look no further than Hayashi. It serves an outstanding ¥950 oyakodon that has been popular for decades.

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Self proclaimed best oyakodon in Japan

hayashi_oyakodon
Hayashi in Akasaka is a shop of long-standing that has been popular for decades in large part thanks to their outstanding oyakodon. They've self-proclaimed it the best in Japan, and judging by the rave reviews online and long lines you often see in front of the store, you might argue that it is indeed the case!
hayashi_store_front
The oyakodon is only served during the weekday lunch hours, from 11:30 to 14:00. At night Hayashi is a 'sumiyaki' (charcoal grilling) restaurant.
interior_hayashi
The restaurant was established in 1964, and they seemingly never changed the decor. It has a very nice authentic, traditional vibe so going there is like a time slip into the past.

The sole item on the lunch menu: the gorgeous oyakodon

hayashi_oyakodon2
Oyakodon (¥950)
They have so much confidence in their oyakodon that it's the only item served at lunch. Pictured above is the standard size. For ¥100 extra you can have it in large but the standard is pretty filling.

Perhaps what is most striking about this dish visually is how glazy it is. It's a bit runnier than the average oyakodon and there is a raw egg yolk on top, along with some shredded nori seaweed, wild chervil leaves and green onions. All these toppings and the glaze makes it look more refined than the average oyakodon.
hayashi_egg
Apparently the raw egg, which is rarely added nowadays, is actually a traditional ingredient of oyakodon. You break it a spread it on the top of the bowl to give the dish a creamy texture.
hayashi_lift
The harmony of flavours and textures is spot on. You get the perfect umami blend coming from the chicken and the seaweed. The toppings are a bit salty by themselves but with a scoop of rice to mellow out the taste, the level of saltiness is just right.
hayashi_lift2
The chicken inside is cut into small pieces and there are no nerves in the meat at all, just tender juicy chicken. There is plenty of it too, so the whole dish is hearty.

Lastly...

Hayashi's oyakodon lived up to its expectation. It was quite frankly one of the best oyakodon I had ever had. If you're in the Akasaka area, definitely give this place a try. It's cheap too at just ¥950. Don't forget however that it's only served for lunch on weekdays.
tabikamome
Japanese food culture enthusiast. Love to explore new areas and discover local specialties.

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