Tokyo in Riyadh

I’m sure your eyes haven’t travelled far from our entry on the five scrumptious dishes served by restaurants in Riyadh. Well, let’s take photo number 4 first:

Bento set!

If you can recall, the first food post that we ever did in the blog is about this Japanese kiosk in the food court of Faisaliah Mall. Samurai it is! If you guessed Samurai then, you’re wrong! It is a bento box from one of the oldest restaurants in the city center… Tokyo Restaurant!

Tokyo in Riyadh

Ramen and salmon sashimi were our objectives when we entered Tokyo Restaurant along Oruba Road. That night, those are the only things my brother and I wanted to eat. We’re craving like mad for Japanese cuisine that’s why the family heeded my suggestion and we all trooped to Tokyo Restaurant… Turned out, they were not serving ramen that night and they didn’t have a delivery of salmon because their salmon comes from Norway (hindi galing Japan?) and this was the time of the volcano eruption in Iceland which canceled and delayed flights from Europe… Bottomline was, no ramen and salmon!!!

Mirrors and unused teppanyaki grills.

To prevent my brothers and I from raising hell, the ‘rents suggested we order something else. Trying not to show my uber disappointment, I flipped their extensive menu of sushi, maki, sashimi, udon, and bento. I gravitated towards the familiar and ordered chicken teriyaki. The brothers got bento boxes and platters of sushis and makis. The ‘rents settled on soba (cold noodles) and yakisoba (dry noodles). I was excited to see the chef cook the meals (well, mine) in front of us but the teppanyaki cooking method was phased out two years ago due to complaints from neighbors. Guess they didn’t want smelling all that goodness and hanker for Japanese cuisine every single day!

A starter of fresh salad

We got free miso soup and little bowls of green salad. The soup was okay, just enough to prepare our stomachs for the feast ahead. The salad was light and refreshing. (That’s what the bros said, I rarely eat uncooked veggies, hehe!) The sushi platter are pleasing to the palate but taste like not of the best quality. I’m not a fan of tuna and mackerel and yellow fin (whiever was served that night, I wasn’t taking notes) so I’m biased. I’m really all for salmon.

A platter of sushi = cooked vinegared rice topped a slice of fish (tuna, mackerel, yellowfin or salmon) or other seafood (octopus, eel) or put into rolls

Upper row is called Makimono, a roll of vinegared rice and cucumber (or any ingredient) wrapped with nori (seaweed). The five pieces that you see on the second and third row are called Nigirizushi oblong mounds of vinegared Japanese rice with a bit of wasabi and toppings draped over.

Another platter of makimono.

Shrimp (ebi) and tuna (maguro)

For the main course:

Chicken teriyaki

Juicy chicken pieces in sweet soy marinade

The Makunouchi Bento
Pickles, sashimi, chicken teriyaki, egg omelette, vegetables and shrimp tempura, and fried potato

I forgot to take photos of the soba dishes! I was too preoccupied eating my chicken teriyaki which I found too sweet but yummy! Naparami tuloy ako ng kain sa rice! Their yakisoba was also sweet, the nakakasuya kind of sweetness. The brothers looked like they enjoyed their bento. They were so happy with the ebi tempura. It has the right crunch and right amount of breading. The sashimi (raw fish slices) of tuna didn’t sit well on their stomachs. I finished all! The pieces of succulent ocean meat complemented the soy and wasabi dip I made. Hay, if that could have been salmon though, I’m sure they won’t even think of sharing. The father didn’t like his soba. The broth was, to our taste, the miso soup on a bigger bowl… just blander. Prices are a little over average for Japanese food.

Overall, we enjoyed our dinner in Tokyo Restaurant. Still we were disappointed the reasons we went there were not there! Lol. Well, that just means one thing: we have to come back! But first, we’ll make sure they have ramen and salmon.


ENDNOTE: When I told my father that I’ve been posting the food and restaurant that we’ve been eating and visiting in Riyadh, he asked me what makes me such an expert in doing resto reviews. Well, I told him “I’m not.” Which is true, I am not a food expert and neither are the other Pink Tarha ladies. We didn’t claim we are. What we are are ordinary persons who like to EAT. So, we’re eaters. Like you.

What we tell in every food and restaurant entry that we write is simply our experience as consumers who walked in at a certain dining place, savored the ambiance, ordered from the menu, ate what we ordered, and enjoyed the moments in between. Don’t we all diners do that? The difference is, we’re writing our observation, impressions, and emotions in this blog. It’s like saying, if we, mere customers didn’t like the food in the place, what more for keen and discerning customers or food experts or gourmands? We’re just living, loving, and eating! Nomnomnom…

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  1. heard it's the best japanese restaurant here in Riyadh.

  2. now i want to eat jap food.

  3. Yum! Tokyo Restaurant was my first tappenyaki (did I spell that right?) experience ever! I thought it was the coolest thing ever as a kid. <br />Now must have sushi for lunch! nom.nom. LOL

  4. My family and I went there and we did not like it what so ever. I actually have ate at a lot in the states and this compared was really low quality.

  5. Sarah Reply

    Best Japanese restaurant in the city!<br />I also reccomend visiting The Noodle House in Centria Mall which is another favorite of my mine.

  6. Too bad the ramen and salmon sashimi were not available that time. Di bale, at least now you have a reason to go back – medyo wala ng problem with the flight delays sa Europe so I&#39;m sure their supply of salmon sashimi should be okay now.<br /><br />We were able to try out that restaurant the last time we were in Riyadh. I must say that I enjoyed the Bento box we ordered. Swerte, swerte lang

  7. What a timely post! Been craving for Japanese food for weeks now! Could you tell us exactly where in Oruba is Tokyo Restaurant? Might go this weekend. Last week, we tried The Noodle House in Centria and its really good. The best resto ive been to (so far) in the city.

  8. Likewise,John!I was searching for a Japanese store not for a resto&#39; though. My husband and I were interested into grooming Japanese cuisines by ourselves but we&#39;re in a quandary of finding a place where we can avail of the ingredients we&#39;d be needing to move forward on our newfound pursuit…If anyone knows of a store or place who sells items like nori (seaweeds),surracha chilli sauce

  9. I haven&#39;t tried tokyo restaurant becuz whenever we try to go there, it&#39;s always close. It opens kinda late, mga 6-6:30 — ayun… but I would love to dine there… they&#39;re close yata ngayong Ramadan, will try after eid 🙂

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