A Gastronomic Experience in Tokyo Awaits. A Trip to Discover the Unique Flavors of Tokyo.

If you were asked what makes Tokyo's food so delicious, what would you say?

Tokyo is a city where diverse cuisines from all over the world gather and evolve.
It is also the birthplace of various ingredients, including traditional Edo vegetables.
A one-of-a-kind Gastronomic experience in Tokyo awaits.

Here we go!
Meet the chefs who weave Tokyo’s food culture with traditional techniques and innovative ideas!
It will surely be an unforgettable page in your trip.

Embrace the seasonal blessings born from Tokyo’s unique natural environment.
Encounter the passion, stories, and smiles of the producers.

It will surely give you new insights into your daily life.

Here we go!

Tokyo Gastronomy Tourism

Enjoy the food nurtured by the climate, environment, customs, traditions, and history of the land, and experience the local culinary culture at the essence of this trip.
The time spent learning, understanding, and savoring will color your experience.

A trip to discover Tokyo's culinary charms.
The delights and destinations are as varied as the traveler.
Here is just a small sample of how to enjoy the trip.
How will you define your Gastronomic experience?

Gastronomy Trip 1
Wasabi Experience and Soba Noodle Making Tour in Okutama
Gastronomy Trip 2
Edo-Tokyo Vegetable Harvesting and Tokyo Craft Gin Distillery Tour

Gastronomy Trip 1

Wasabi Experience and Soba Noodle Making Tour in Okutama

Tokyo is one of the largest cities in the world, but at the same time, it is a city with a rich natural environment.

One hour and thirty minutes by train from the city center lies the town of Okutama, in the northwest of Tokyo.
The town is characterized by expansive forests and mountain streams. A trip to Okutama allows you to explore the natural beauty of Tokyo's water source and the culinary delights it offers. Updated: March 21, 2024

Tour adviser

Mr. Hitoshi Tsunoi・Mr. Tatsuya Tsunoi (The Wasabi Brothers)

In the mountains of the town of Okutama in Tokyo, wasabi is cultivated in the fields. In March 2020, the activity known as TOKYO WASABI was officially launched by the Wasabi Brothers.
While preserving the traditional cultivation of wasabi in Okutama, various activities are undertaken with the theme of “Sharing Okutama's Wasabi with the World.”

Tour Schedule

1Try wild deer meat from Okutama

Our trip began with a visit to the charming culinary stage, Shokujidokoro Chiwaki, located approximately 40 minutes by car from JR Ome Station.
This traditional farmhouse restaurant offers a unique dining experience.

Here at Chiwaki, you can enjoy local delicacies such as sweet fish and wild vegetables.
This time, we were served grilled deer caught in Okutama.
Game meat, also known as gibier, has recently been gaining popularity, but in Okutama, it has long been consumed as a valuable source of nutrition.
I had expected wild deer to be tough and wild in taste, but when I brought it to my mouth, it was far more tender than I had imagined.
The more I chewed, the more I could sense the umami of the lean meat.
I was surprised by its softness and wonderful flavor.
This is the kind of food that you can only experience at a certain place at a certain time while you are there in person.

This is one of the pleasures of traveling.

2To the cultivation area of Hon Wasabi

Departing from Shokujidokoro Chiwaki, we drove for 30 minutes, enjoying the views of the mountain ranges and Lake Okutama.
Our next destination was a visit to the cultivation grounds of wasabi, a renowned local product of Okutama, essential for sushi, sashimi, and as a condiment in Japanese cuisine.

Our guides for the trip were Hitoshi and Tatsuya Tsunoi, known as the Wasabi Brothers.
To get to the Wasabi Field, they first gave us a lecture on walking in the stream.
After the lecture, we strapped into boots and explored the streams of Okutama for the wasabi fields!

TOKYO WASABI, cultivated by the blessings of water and the heartfelt dedication of producers.

The Wasabi Brothers shared various insights about wasabi. They emphasized the crucial need for clean water for the growth of wasabi.
They also explained that in the water-rich region of Okutama, wasabi has been cultivated since the Edo period, often presented as a tribute to the Shogunate.
Wasabi grown in the diverse natural environment of Okutama, with significant temperature variations, ranks third in Japan in terms of production volume and is highly esteemed by chefs.

Sushi is now a globally renowned dish, and with its popularity, there is also increasing interest in wasabi abroad.
Visitors from abroad are also coming to visit the wasabi fields in Okutama.

Despite the growing global interest in wasabi, the number of wasabi farmers has been decreasing due to the aging population in the region.

To prevent the loss of traditional wasabi cultivation, the Wasabi Brothers have been actively involved in organizing tours to introduce wasabi, participating in food events, and undertaking various initiatives to promote Okutama wasabi.

Elegance hidden within freshly harvested wasabi, with its sweetness and aroma.

After our lecture, we arrived at the wasabi field, where we tasted wasabi.
The Wasabi Brothers recommended that we try some freshly picked and ground wasabi, and it was so sweet!
What a delight!
It was the first time I experienced sweetness spreading in my mouth after eating wasabi.
The sweetness was accompanied by the strong aroma of wasabi that slipped through my nose.
Only the flavor of wasabi remained on the tongue, with no trace of spiciness.
I was really surprised at how different it was from commonly sold store-bought wasabi and later learned the cultivation method is different.

Being Japanese, I thought I was familiar with the taste of wasabi, but this was another discovery.
Such discoveries are indeed one of the highlights of traveling to production areas.

3Finish the trip with Soba

The last program of the culinary trip in Okutama was the experience of making soba noodles at the Yama no Furusato Village.
It is a pleasure to eat a meal prepared by someone else, but there is a different kind of deliciousness in food prepared by one's own hands.
This is especially true when cooking with family and friends.
After making soba noodles, topping them with fresh wasabi, and tasting the noodles firsthand, it truly encapsulated the culinary essence of Okutama.
The final meal was also of indescribable, exceptional deliciousness.

4That’s a wrap

Explore the quest for that delicious bite and make your everyday meals even more enjoyable and delightful through a one-day culinary trip in Tokyo, where you can enjoy a trip filled with tasty discoveries.


Facilities and stores that helped make this tour possible.

Shokujidokoro Chiwaki


A traditional farmhouse restaurant located in Otamba, Okutama-cho, a hidden gem of Tokyo.
The restaurant offers a variety of seasonal dishes, including wild game dishes of deer and wild boar, ayu (sweet fish) cooked in a traditional iron pot, as well as dishes made with mushrooms and mountain vegetables.



A wasabi farm located in Okutama, Tokyo, where traditional wasabi cultivation has been practiced for generations.
With the aging population of farmers posing a threat to the continuity of this tradition, there is a strong desire to preserve the wasabi culture in Okutama.
The aim is to pass down Japan's treasures such as its traditions and culture to the next generation.
Furthermore, there is a desire to showcase wasabi, a spice native to Japan, to the world.
In pursuit of these goals, various activities are being undertaken through the medium of wasabi.

Yama no Furusato Village


A natural park facility located within the Chichibu Tama Kai National Park in Tokyo.
It opened as a nature interaction facility in October 1990.
In addition to camping accommodations with tents and log cabins, the facility also includes a visitor center, craft center, and restaurant.
It is a multifaceted facility with trails for enjoying nature walks.
Visitors can receive information about the surrounding area, participate in nature experiences, and enjoy various activities such as woodworking, stonework, and pottery crafting, tailored to their preferences including overnight stays.

Gastronomy Trip 2

Edo-Tokyo Vegetable Harvesting and Tokyo Craft Gin Distillery Trip

Tokyo is one of the leading metropolises in the world.
Even in such a modern city, there are farmers who continue to grow traditional vegetables and individuals dedicated to sustainable gin production with a belief for food manufacturing.

I went on a splendid food trip, where I had a chance to experience the background and passion of the producers, which it give new insights about Tokyo Cuisine. Updated: March 21, 2024

Tour Advisor

Bistro Ireel Ningyocho, Owner Chef Tetsuya Shimada

At the age of 23, Shimada went to France and trained at renowned restaurants such as Olympe (1 Michelin star), Lucas Carton (3 Michelin stars), and L'Arp_ge (3 Michelin stars).
He also trained in various pastry shops and bakeries. After returning to Japan, he worked as a chef in Ikebukuro and Ebisu before opening his own bistro, Ireel Ningyocho, in 2013, where he has served as the head chef ever since.
His French cuisine, using Japanese ingredients, has gained attention, leading to numerous appearances on television and in magazines.

Cooking Specialist Yukiko Tashiro

Tashiro is a professional Vegetable Sommelier and Edo-Tokyo Vegetable Concierge.
She writes columns, creates recipes, and leads seminars and cooking classes, spreading knowledge about the fruits and vegetables she loves.

Tour Schedule

1Local Vegetables of Tokyo

Do you know such vegetables as Yanaka Ginger, Nerima Daikon Radish, and Naito Chili Pepper? These are all vegetables the people of Tokyo hold dear to their hearts.

The first destination of our tour is Farm Watado, a farm that has produced vegetables from traditional times until now.
The vast farm is located about a 10-minute walk from Heiwadai Station on the Yurakucho Line.

Watado's Passion for Edo-Tokyo Vegetables

We asked Watado, the farm owner, about Tokyo's traditional vegetables (Edo-Tokyo vegetables).

"Edo-Tokyo Vegetables" refer to the vegetables that originated from agricultural seeds and traditional cultivation methods in Tokyo until the mid-Showa period, with the majority of seeds being self-sustained or maintained by nearby seed merchants.

You will find Nerima Daikon Radish still freshly covered in dirt and Shintorina, a leafy vegetable spilling out of baskets, at the stands located at the entrance of the farm.

These vegetables are all piled up randomly, each showcasing their own unique and distinctive characteristics.
The vegetables look as if they were just harvested from the neighboring field, each one boasting its own fresh appearance.

Edo-Tokyo vegetables are often irregular in size and shape, making cultivation difficult.
However, Watado is determined to preserve these precious vegetables that have been deeply rooted in the land of Nerima for generations.
With such passion, he continues his efforts to cultivate Edo-Tokyo vegetables.

Watado kindly gave us the opportunity to experience harvesting Komatsuna (traditional Japanese mustard spinach).
There was a scent of soil and deep green as soon as we harvested it.
We felt the power of life from the fresh, lush leaves spreading outward.

※Source: JA Tokyo Chuo Kai site

2To the Tokyo Craft Gin Distillery

In recent years, there has been a global boom in alcoholic beverages inspired by the local area, using ingredients associated with the location.

Interestingly, Tokyo also has distilleries producing such special drinks.
As the next destination, we headed to one of them, the Tokyo Riverside Distillery located in Kuramae.

Tokyo Riverside Distillery is near Kuramae Station on the Oedo Line and Asakusa Line, within walking distance of the Sumida River.
As you approach the entrance, its mint green shutter and awning catch your eye.
Surrounding the area are cafes and bars housed in renovated old warehouses and factory buildings.
The building of the distillery used to be a printing factory as well.

There is a stand where you can purchase craft gin for takeout on the first floor of the building.
You can see copper stills beyond the stand.
This time, we were guided through the process of gin production by Miyajima, a bartender and distiller at The Ethical Spirits & Co., the operator of the distillery.

Understanding Sustainability Through Gin

Gin is made by infusing juniper berries (the fruit of the common juniper tree) and botanicals (ingredients for flavoring) into distilled spirits derived from grains, followed by a final distillation process. Interestingly, the main ingredients used in this distillery are by-products generated during food processing, such as cocoa husks and coffee grounds, which are considered unnecessary and typically discarded.

For example, in the case of LAST ELYSIUM, a popular gin from the Tokyo Riverside Distillery, it is made of sake lees, which are produced in large quantities during the process of making Japanese sake.
It is said that about 30_40% of the rice used in making Japanese sake becomes sake lees, but sake lees are often disposed of due to the imbalance between the amount generated and consumed.

Tokyo Riverside Distillery is taking initiatives to upcycle sake lees that would otherwise have been disposed of in response to this situation.
By purchasing and using sake lees in their distilled spirits, they aim to create new economic value for sake brewing, rice farmers, and gin distilleries, thus fostering a circular economy that connects these industries.
It was mentioned that this reflects the idea of sake lees remaining at the end of sake brewing process continuing to the next life, which is symbolically conveyed in their gin.

We moved to the bar located on the second floor of the building after touring the distillery.
We tasted three types of gin produced on the first floor and enjoyed the richness of their aromas while imagining the ingredients before they were transformed into gin.

Taking on new challenges in Tokyo

Kudo from Ethical Spirits mentions that one of the appeals of Tokyo is the ability to take in appealing ingredients from all over Japan, regardless of the region.
What was originally meant to be disposed of within the flow of manufacturing is reborn as gin and restored into a consumable product once again.
Tokyo is considered an ideal location as a hub for this circular production cycle.

Goods from all over the world gather and are consumed daily in Tokyo, the largest city in Japan.
It is an endeavor that started here in Tokyo, aiming for the sustainability of food and the local economy.
I hope that many people will come to appreciate the taste of craft gin, brewed with the distiller's belief.

3Time to Interact with Food Products

From the Tokyo Riverside Distillery to the kitchen studio.
We invited Chef Shimada, the owner chef of the natural bistro Ireel Ningyocho in Nihonbashi Ningyocho, to be our instructor, and tasted the Komatsuna (traditional Japanese mustard spinach) cultivated by Watado.

The menu was Traditional Japanese Mustard Spinach potage soup.

According to Chef Shimada, to further increase the flavor of the Komatsuna leaves harvested this time, he added shiso, which is not typically included.
Chef Shimada went through a process of trial and error in creating the recipe to further bring out the uniqueness of the ingredients while also considering the possibility of participants recreating the dish at home.

I was overwhelmed seeing the dedication of the chef exploring optimal cooking methods, thinking of the uniqueness of the ingredient and it made me eager to hear more.

4Culinary Trip of Exploration

A trip to explore the behind-the-scenes stories of everyday food products and dishes that we casually eat.
When you spend time at the supermarket or while enjoying a meal at a restaurant, you may not always think of the people behind the products or how they are made.
By understanding the background and messages from the producers, these food experience transform into something even more delightful.

It is an experience diving into the unknown.
Embraced within the casualness of everyday life, related to an adventure through food.
Why not start such a culinary trip yourself?


Facilities and stores that helped make this tour possible.

Farm Watado

Farm Watado produces and sells around 30 types of fresh vegetables over the year in Heiwadai, Nerima Ward.
They also offer about 10 types of Edo-Tokyo Vegetables, such as Nerima Daikon Radish, Goseki Bansei Komatsuna, and Naito Chili Peppers.

The Ethical Spirits & Co. Tokyo Riverside Distillery


This local distilling venture produces craft gin using discarded materials from other types of food and drink production to operate a regenerative distillery, aiming for a circular economy.
Tokyo Riverside Distillery in Kuramae, Tokyo, established by The Ethical Spirits & Co., is the world's first regenerative distillery specializing in ethical production and consumption.

Related Sites



TOKYO GROWN is a website that specializes in sharing the appeal of Tokyo’s agriculture, forestry, and fisheries both domestically and internationally.


https://vegesh.tokyo/(Japanese only)

VEGESH TOKYO is an online service for in-store pick-up of vegetables produced locally in Tokyo.
With the motto “Connecting the Future of Food from Tokyo” VEGESH TOKYO promotes local production for local consumption.
The project aims to bring locally produced products, which can sometimes be hard to come by, closer to customers.

Media Report