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On the first day of the season forecasted for snow in Tokyo, I knew I wanted something warm and spicy. I thought Korean would suffice, but I couldn't shake off my hankering for nabe. So I decided to do a search for hinabe on google. Hinabe is a style of nabe (hi meaning fire, and nabe meaning hot pot) that is cooked in a pot that is compartmentalized in two. One side consists of a very spicy red broth while the other consists of a mild broth.

I knew I wanted to eat on the west side of Tokyo, so I ended up picking Shouryu in Nakameguro. The atmosphere was casual, yet we got our own booth with a beaded partition. It felt kind of 70s - loved it. Both broths had just the right amount of flavor - and the red side was really spicy - just the way I like it. I was actually quite surprised at just how spicy it was, considering Japanese people rank pretty low on the "I-can-eat-really-spicy-stuff"-scale.
What I love about hinabe is that you can switch back and forth between the two broths, so you aren't just eating the same flavor throughout the whole meal.

The main plus about this place was that it was all-you-can-eat for 90 minutes for 3,000 yen (about $30)! The time limit means you have to order everything within 90 minutes (they don't kick you out after 90 min). This provided a great opportunity to try all kinds of veggies and meats. Although, the meat was nothing spectacular, I really enjoyed the veggies. They soaked up the broth for optimal flavor and seasonal vegetables such as sweet-potato and kabocha helped me feel warm and wintery. At at the end we ordered a plate of chuka-soba (ramen noodles) which was divine for someone like me who loves tan-tan men.

One complaint I have is that they used a portable gas stove, which means they have to keep replacing the stove with disposable gas canisters. This is very environmentally unfriendly and quite a bother when you are cooking something and the heat goes out mid-way. I would like to see this place invest in stoves built into the tables.

That said, I would definitely go back for the value and the atmosphere.

"One side consists of a very spicy red broth while the other consist of a mild broth."


"...all-you-can-eat for 90 minutes for 3,000 yen"


Shouryu Nakameguro
1-3-3 Nakameguro
Meguro-ku Tokyo

T: 03-3716-8929
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2 comments

  • Yeah, usually on Fridays and Saturdays, they unwritten rule is about 2-hours for dinner whether or not it is all-you-can-eat. The host will tell you beforehand too when it’s really packed.

    yoko on

  • GENIUS!!!! Perfect for winter!

    Also very smart that they put a time cap on it. Otherwise I would just eat and eat and eat…

    Do they put time limits on high-end restaurants in Tokyo? Not for buffet, but I know that in NYC, a fancy restaurant called Wakiya got a lot of crap for limiting eating time to like 2 hours.

    kayoko on

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