OWL Magazine Korea

Tokyo Ginza, Eel Rice Bowl “Hitsumabushi Nagoya Bincho”

Japanese people have a significant love for eel. Eel is sometimes treated as a freshwater eel, and distinctions are made based on quality. There are various ways to prepare and enjoy eel, and “Hitsumabushi” is a relatively expensive eel rice bowl dish.

It was the last day of a 4-day, 5-night trip to Tokyo. After checking out from the hotel in Shinagawa, I headed to Ginza. Having already eaten Tsukemen in Shinagawa, I quickly got hungry again upon arriving in Ginza. Japanese food, in general, tends to have smaller portions, so even a single serving didn’t satisfy my hunger quickly.

Since it could be the last meal in Japan for this trip, I decided to go all out for the final meal. After considering various options, I settled on trying an eel rice bowl.

“Japanese Eel Rice Bowl, Hitsumabushi”

While in Korea, eel is mainly grilled, in Japan, it’s often served as a rice bowl. Eel rice bowls are considered a representative nutritious meal in Japan, with distinctions made based on quality.

Ginza can be considered a representative commercial district, much like Gangnam or Yeouido in Seoul, and it’s filled with luxurious restaurants. Among them, I had the chance to try the eel rice bowl at “Nagoya Bincho,” located on the top floor of the Dokyu Hanzu building.

The timing of my arrival at the restaurant might have been a bit off, or it could be that the eel rice bowl was relatively expensive, but there weren’t many customers, so I didn’t have to wait, and I could enjoy my meal promptly.

“Eel Rice Bowl, Hitsumabushi starting from 3,150 yen per serving”

The Hitsumabushi, an eel rice bowl, started at 3,150 yen per serving. This is approximately 31,500 won, which is a higher price range than expected. However, this is for the basic menu, and adding more eel would increase the cost further. Since it was my first visit to this place, I ordered the basic menu.

“How to Enjoy Eel Rice Bowl”

The restaurant provided a guide on how to enjoy the eel rice bowl. Guides were available in Korean, Chinese, and English. Generally, it was recommended to try each piece in four quarters, experimenting with three different ways, and then choosing the most enjoyable method for the last piece.

“Three Ways to Enjoy Eel Rice Bowl”

  • Enjoy the eel as it is.
  • Add green onions and wasabi and eat together.
  • Add green onions, wasabi, and “Ochazuke” and eat.

“Ochazuke” is a simple dish where hot tea or broth is poured over rice, and in this case, it’s added to the eel rice bowl.

The restaurant, located at the top of the Dokyu Hands building, exuded a luxurious atmosphere. Although the price was not cheap and a bit on the expensive side, it was a bit burdensome. Still, I felt that I properly concluded my Tokyo trip with a satisfying final meal.

“Japan Tokyo Ginza, Hitsumabushi Nagoya Bincho”

  • Address: Japan, 〒104-0061 Tōkyō-to, Chūō-ku, 中央区Ginza, 2 Chome−2−14, マロニエゲート
  • Phone: +81 3-5159-0231
  • Business Hours: 11:00 – 15:30 / 17:00 – 23:00
  • Website: Hitsumabushi Nagoya Bincho