I am a sucker for ebi tempura, aka the Japanese prawn err… fritter. I like tempura in general, but the prawn one’s just my favourite. The bigger the prawn, the better. As you can see from a previous post, I’d defo choose the ebi tempura option when I order tenzaru soba.

This will be a super short post, as I’m bigging up a particular tempura donburi (tendon[1] for short) outlet called Tendon Tenya Asakusa 「天丼てんや浅草」. This place comes highly recommended, should you feel a tad famished when you visit Tōkyō.

For the uninitiated, a donburi 「丼」 is a rice dish in a large-ish bowl (丼 lit. bowl). Hence, the term tendon 「天丼」 is a portmanteau of tempura, inferring that the main ingredient accompanying the rice, which may well be meat, fish, prawn or veg, made into a tempura, and donburi.

Tenya’s a chain and they are pretty ubiquitous around Tōkyō – I could simply find one in most of the areas I was visiting. The first time I had the pleasure of stuffing myself with tendon was at their Harajuku outlet[2]. It was a medium-sized eaterie and we only had to wait for 5 minutes until we were ushered to our table. Meals get served rather promptly and I can assure you I am salivating incessantly as I am typing this blog post. The taste of the tempura, rice and don tare in the mix – sublime!

They actually have a lot of options to choose from (click here for the menu). You may choose to have noodles (soba or udon) if rice isn’t your cup of tea. As for seafood – they have pretty much anything from dai ika (large squid) to anago (conger eel). Set (setto) meals are also available where you will get tea and miso soup. The veg that you get (depends on which set you order) varies and can include lotus root (renkon) and green beans.

The food’s cheap and relative high in calories (Japanese menus have the calories clearly labelled), but is just superb. As I said, you can find one pretty easily and I’ve been to the ones in Nippori and the Shinjuku skyscraper district[3] as well. It’ll be an onaka ippai 「お腹いっぱい」[4] moment every time.

[1]Not that tendon.
[2]Address to copy and paste for Google Maps: 〒150-0001 Tōkyō, Shibuya 神宮前4-31 原宿TKビル1F
[3]The Shinjuku skyscraper branch is here: 〒160-0023 Tokyo, Shinjuku, Nishishinjuku, 1−25−1 新宿センタービル管理. By the way, if you search for this branch, Google will erroneously translate it as ‘Centerville’. Don’t bother asking around for a Centerville as it doesn’t exist. Google’s being too clever and had translated Shinjuku sentā biru as such, and biru 「ビル」 is short for birudingu ie Shinjuku Centre Building.
[4]”I’m so full I can’t walk”. Kinda.