~ Perfect blend of Japanese tradition and a taste of France
Kagura-zaka is one of the few areas of Tokyo that retains the atmosphere of the old metropolis while attracting large number of French people. This is due to L'Institut Franco-Japonais de Tokyo in nearby Iiidabashi. With winding cobblestone streets, charming atmosphere and abundance of French restaurants, it’s the perfect blend of Japanese tradition and a little taste of France.
Kagurazaka was once situated on the outer moat of Edo Castle and this area used to be where many feudal lords resided in the Edo period.
Then in the Meiji and Taisho eras around 1900, the area served as an entertainment district or pleasure quarters with geisha agencies and traditional Japanese-style restaurants.
There are several high-class Japanese restaurants, Michelin-starred French restaurants along the narrow streets (Honda Yokocho) and the cobbled back alleyways off the main slope, creating a sense of nostalgia for Japanese history and tradition. The area looks like Gion in Kyoto.
Shrines and Temples
There are two local shrine and temple in Kagurazaka you should visit before you are lured by shops and restaurants. The Bishamonten Zenkokuji, the Buddhist Temple, has been a symbol of Kagurazaka since 18th century. Bishamonten is one of the Seven Japanese Gods of Fortune and worshippers are blessed with prosperous trade.
Further up the street, you will find modern architecture, the Akagi Shrine, a branch shrine of the one at Mt. Akagi in Gunma Prefecture. The shrine was built during the Edo Period.Designed by the prominent Japanese architect, Kuma Kengo, it features glass façade and wood interior. The shrine has been protecting the community for centuries.
Shops & Restaurants
This area is complete with high quality French restaurants, bistros and brasseries in the heart of Tokyo.
Lugdunum Bouchon Lyonnais is comfortably casual dining spot not to be missed. It is located in the Honda Yokocho off Kagurazaka's main street.
4-3-7 KagurazakaShinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162-0825Lunch 11:30~15:30 (Last order 14:00)Dinner 18:00~23:30 (Last order 21:30)Closed on Mondays, 1st & 3rd Tuesdays Telephone: 03-6426-1201
Le Menu Express (Available on weekdays only) 1,950 yen
Salad and Lyon Style "Saladier" + Main Dish (sea bream saute)+ coffee
We ordered casual menu this time, it was excellent!
La Kagu building designed by Kuma Kengo and Associate is a modern architecture accommodating café, bookstore and fashion in one. AKOMEYA TOKYO is a good place for lunch serving Japanese cuisine.
67 Yarai-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162-0805
11:00 ~ 20:30
Lunch: 11:00 ~ 15:30