Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro

Tired of sitting around? Then why not head over to the standing steak chain Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro! Okay, that was kinda lame but let’s move on! I’ve started seeing this Ikinari Steak chain show up all over Tokyo. When I want to eat steak, I usually think of the Pepper Lunch chain restaurant because there’s one right down the street of where I live. The prices and quality of steak at Pepper Lunch is not bad. Also, they have seats at Pepper Lunch, not that it matters. However, if you want premium steak then check out Ikinari Steak. Apparently, Pepper Lunch and Ikinari Steak are both under the same company.

Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro

Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro

When entering Ikinari Steak, you’re first directed to a steak weighing counter. You tell them what you want to order and how much grams you want. The steak weighing person will then slice a piece of your chosen steak and weigh it right in front of you. He or she will ask you if the weight and price is okay with you. Then, you choose how you want your steak: rare, medium rare, medium, medium well, or well done. Next, you can order a combo set (rice and salad) or drink with steak. I wanted to be fancy so I ordered a glass of wine for 500 yen with my steak. After my order, I was led to my standing counter and was given a number and the receipt (you pay afterwards).

Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro

Ikinari Steak in Ikebukuro

The steak came out smoking on a heated iron platter. I recommend putting on a paper bib beforehand. I poured sauce over the sizzling steak and was glad that I had already put on my paper bib because the sauce splattered all over from the sizzling. I also add some grated garlic.

The quality of the steak was nice. The taste of the steak was alright. To be honest, I actually like the steak at Pepper Lunch better. But probably only because the sauce is sweet at Pepper’s. Yeah, I have a sweet tooth.

Below is the lunch and dinner menu for Ikinari Steak as of July 2nd, 2015. For an updated version, as well as other languages of the menu such as Chinese and Korean, please click here.

There are many Ikinari Steak locations all over Tokyo, but since my visit was to the Ikebukuro East Exit location, I’ll list the address for that one.

Ikinari Steak, Ikebukuro East Exit
Hishiyama Building 1F, 1-15-1 Higashiikebukuro
03-6914-0429

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Bistro Ore no Furenchi in Ebisu

My French, Ore no Furenchi, 俺のフレンチ, or whatever you call it. This stand up, top-notch French restaurant serves high-end ingredients at reasonable prices. I went with my girlfriend on Sunday at around 4:00pm, an hour after opening, and there was already a line of about 20 people. It was about an hour wait before we got seats, I mean, a table because there were no chairs. If you were one of the lucky few that got to sit on the edge or at the front counter, you had seats, but about 70% of the customers were standing as this is a stand up restaurant. Furthermore, the place was cramped to the max. The restaurant was probably only designed to fit about 20 people, but there was at least 40 people inside. We were standing shoulder to shoulder with other guests. Our tables, the size of a New York style pizza, were literally only about a feet away from the other tables. If a fire were to break out, there would definitely be casualties, but then again, that could be said about most establishments in Tokyo.

Lemonade and a Free Side Dish from Ore no Furenchi

Lemonade and a Free Side Dish from Ore no Furenchi

Enough of the rambling, let’s move on. Drinks were priced normally around at about 400 yen per drink. My girlfriend got the oolong tea and I got a hot lemonade. The taste was amazing and unlike any other oolong tea or lemonade I’ve ever tried. Definitely give the drinks a try if you decide to check out this place.

The food were reasonably priced. Dishes for priced at about 1000 to 1500 yen and these were dishes that included high-end ingredients such as caviar, lobster, and foie gras. Unfortunately, there’s no English menu (for the drinks as well), so my girlfriend ended up ordering again (I really should work harder on studying). When I tried to order, I ended up just asking to get the same thing as the people next to us, but then they had like different dishes and we ended up getting the one that I wasn’t asking for. But anyway, since the menu was in Japanese, I can’t really help you out with naming what I ordered, but I’ll try to add any details that I can for the pictures. Enjoy.

What we got, for how much we got it at, in the city of Tokyo, is just an hour wait. Sure this place serves expensive ingredients for an inexpensive price, and sure the food is supposedly prepared by famous chefs, but is it worth an hour wait in the cold, the stand up eating, and the super crowded environment? But wait, I haven’t been said anything about the taste of the food yet. Let me do that before a decision is made. Let’s start with the caviar dish. All I can say about it is fish. The dish smelled like fish, tasted like fish, and left the aftertaste of fish in my mouth. I was not happy. In my opinion, it’s the chef’s job to get rid of the fishy taste while keeping the flavors of the food intact and making it taste great. This chef did not do that. As for the rest of the food, I feel there was not enough flavor. I don’t know if it was because the restaurant ran out of salt or what not, but I felt the food could have been much better. So back to making the decision. The answer is simply no. The food and atmosphere of the restaurant is not worth the price and wait. Would we go again? No. Well, maybe, but only because we didn’t try the dessert yet. We wanted to try the dessert, but we were too full from all the food. We also wanted to try the lobster dish, but they ran out. Honestly speaking, we ordered too much for a party of two. But anyway, if we were to go again, we’ll only be ordering drinks and desserts.

Here are some review sites of the restaurant. Unfortunately, it’s all in Japanese, but there’s a lot of pictures to look at!
http://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1303/A130302/13143574/
http://r.gnavi.co.jp/njp09bcy0000/

Ore no Furenchi (俺のフレンチ) Ebisu
1-3-10 Ebisunishi | 1F, Shibuya, Tokyo Prefecture 150-0021
東京都渋谷区恵比寿西1-3-10 ファイブアネックス 1F, 150-0021
03-3461-1328

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