Saturday, October 30, 2010

the road less travelled..

this afternoon i was at harajuku buying a mop.

yes, totally uncool but what else do you think i'd be shopping for on a friday afternoon in the middle of all the stores, right? anyway, i was extremely excited about the bottles of aromatheraphy essence i had just gotten and ran into a side street to tear it open and take a long whiff. i got a lavender-y one, a relaxy homey one and one thats called "happy nose"! thought it sounded cute and it smells a little like vicks and when i put it into my humidifier, it clears my sinuses like magic.. but i digress. so back to the little side street! it was kinda cute, quieter and less snazzy than the huge brands on omotesanda hills but still very charming. so i explored a little.

it had the cutest stores. some bicycle wear, some trendy local budding designers, some secondhand vintage stores and some SUPER cute houses!! after taking a few blind turns, i wandered into a thai restaurant to check out their menu, nothing caught my eye but the name was SUPER famliar!! "CHAO BAMBOO!" how can you forget a hilarious name like that, right? it was the gyoza restaurant dick made me promised i would go visit. she had forgotten the name of the awesome gyoza place but she remembers lining up for ONE hour and that it was next to "chao bamboo!". so i turn round the corner and found: 

Harajuku Gyoza Rou!!! :) and without the famous long winding queue!!! :) 

the menu was great! it was in english and really straight forward! and my server, who looked like the boss, was very sweet! i ordered classic gyozas (290 yen) and a side serve of beansprouts (180 yen) and sat at the counter.

the view from my stool! the entire restaurant has a U-shaped bar overlooking an open kitchen. so while you chow on your piping hot gyoza, you can steal a few tip on how to make those perfectly charred but steamy on top gyoza! :)

only four types of gyoza are offered: steamed (sui-gyoza) or fried (yaki-gyoza), and with or without garlic (ninniku) and they come in serves of 6. the gyoza was everything i expected but for such a well-regarded restaurant, what really struck me was that the whole place was very unpretentious and personal! great place to knock down a few beers and load up on gyoza and bar snacks. my total tab came to less than 500 yen! a perfect mid-day snack for me!! but i'm not entirely sure if i can be arsed waiting for an hour for gyoza!!

Harajuku Gyoza Lou
Nearest station: Meiji-Jingumae (3 min.) or Harajuku (5 min.).
Directions: From the Meiji/Omotesando Dori intersection, walk on Omotesando Dori toward Aoyama and take the 3rd right (just before Kiddy Land); it's at the end of this street, on the right!!


  1. yummmy! Reading your posts... I really really would love to visit Japan again.. someday =)

  2. im sure you will!! :) its just the sort of place for you! :)
    japan is lovely but i'd recommending coming in spring or autumn, the weather is milder and if you travel out of tokyo, the mountains & countryscape is definitely prettier with sakura blooms or red maple leaves! :)

  3. ooohhhhh
    Can't believe you found this place my dear.
    It's our favourite gyoza place too!
    Check out the tokyo pics on FB and you will see how your shot looks so similar to ours...
    By the way, the orange poodle was spotted outside the restaurant next to kaffir lime!! :)

  4. Re: ooohhhhh
    yayyyy!!! :) i just bumped into it! i was looking for THE ramen place you told me about in harajuku!! :)
    so cool!!!! :)

  5. Re: ooohhhhh
    i think the ramen place in harjuku is on meiji jingumei..
    although, I have only been to the one in akihabara...
    ooh i miss tokyo!

  6. Re: ooohhhhh
    next year!! :) *fingers crossed* will you pass through tokyo on your way to hokkaido :)
    i'll keep looking! there are way too many awesome food spots to explore! need some pals to find and excuse to keep eating!!! :)


leave me a little love note. xx