Gyūkatsu Okada in Shinbashi 牛かつおか田

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Gyū Katsu Okada is a restaurant that has been on my Go List for about a decade. It opened in 1998 and the signature dish is Australian wagyū that is breaded and deep-fried. It is a classic restaurant that has been mentioned in many food magazines over the years. The meat is cooked in 210 degrees C oil for only 30 seconds, hence the rare wagyū. It is served with two sauces, soy sauce that you can have with wasabi or an original sesame-based dressing. The lunch set comes with miso soup, rice, and a salad based on thinly julienned cabbage, as you would find at a tonkatsu restaurant. The sesame dressing is also very nice for the salad. The lunch set is 1,200 JPY.

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The restaurant is in the basement of the New Shinbashi Building. While the building is called new, it is anything but. There was an excessive amount of duct tape inside on the corners of the walls. The space is dark, but I guess that is to be expected for a basement restaurant? Even the restaurant is quite tired inside, but that exactly what makes a place like this special. There are only six seats at the counter and two tables seating four. The restaurant is smoke-free, which is not always the case in the Shinbashi area.

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The chef, Kenichi Okada, trained in French cuisine. He has created such a following for this dish that he is only open for a few hours for lunch only on weekdays. It is very popular and there is usually a line. I happened to come just before they closed at 2:00 p.m. and even then the restaurant was filled with salarymen in suits. I overheard one of them say to Mrs. Okada that the four of them have been trying to come to the restaurant over the years and finally got in today. She apologized for the inconvenience. How Japanese. The restaurant is scheduled to stay open until 2:00 p.m., but if they do sell out they will close early. This is the sign on the door if you have missed out.

Gyu Katsu Okada 牛かつ おか田

Minato-ku, Shinbashi 2-16-1, New Shinbashi Building B1

03-3502-0883

Monday-Friday 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

closed weekends and holidays

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