Smokey and old school


Iseya Honten is said to be an institution in Kichijoji.  And if you want to exprience something local, it doesn’t get any more local than this.  The 80-year old yakitori joint is totally old school – smokey fumes, greasy walls, shaky floorboards, wobbly tables and did I mention the smoke?   It’s like one of our well loved  zhi char stalls.  It has its own special charm.  Here you get your regulars who take the counter seats in front of the grill, students, salarymen after a hard day’s work and one or two curious tourists like us. 

The yakitori is a steal at 80yen a stick, and you get to choose whether you want it grilled with salt or soya sauce.  Since we’re not really into grilled innards and what not, our choices were limited to chicken and chicken meatballs.  Grilled with salt, they were surprisingly yummy.  We also tried the giant shu mai which was pretty good.  And as we were about done, we spied grilled corn and couldn’t resist.  Sometimes in life, it’s good to be greedy because that corn was so so good!

I get why Iseya stands out among the rest of the yakitori joints.  Great atomosphere, good food, reasonable prices – what’s not to get?

Directions: Take the south exit of Kichijoji station.  Walk down the shopping street leading to Inokashira Park.  It’s just at the end, next to Starbucks.

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