Kakoiya, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan

We had a table at Kakoiya Shinjuku (かこいや 新宿店) for our ice-breaking ski group dinner of about 14-15 of us. I didn’t know pretty much all of them until I met them for the first time at the station, but most of them already knew one another from previous ski trips. After a lot of introduction, small talks and trying to memorise everyone’s face and name (which I made a special effort to do and actually did quite well!), we headed off to the restaurant.

Kakoiya is located very near Shinjuku Station. It’s on the second floor but had a small lift for access in addition to a narrow staircase for everyone else, which was convenient because our group leader had unfortunately recently broken his ankle and was on crutches. The restaurant was small and dark, and again they had no concept of a separate smoking area, but at least we got a semi-private booth with screen doors.

I believe we got the several-course set menu of some sort. I have no idea which dish is what, but it came one after another in communal serving plates or bowls. There was salad, sashimi, various meat dishes, some more seafood, roasted vegetables, noodles…

The food was quite good and we had a good time eating and chatting away. The hot food was hot, which was nice because we kept feeling a cold breeze at one end of the table. Most of the new friends weren’t very big eaters, so I got to eat a bit more than my share towards the end.

We ended up paying 5000 yen (~A$53) per head, which was probably not expensive for so many courses and drinks, but a lot more than my initial budget for the night. Ouch. Huge spending today.

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