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If you’re traveling Tokyo in Japan, you’ll probably find yourself eating a lot of eel rice bowls. They’re expensive, but the combination of fatty, tender eel and sweet sauce is one of those dishes that’s guaranteed to satisfy. Today, we’re going to introduce you to Nadai Unatoto Ueno, a Tokyo eel rice bowl restaurant where you can enjoy this dish for a very reasonable price of ¥1100.

Location / Business Hours

Nadai Unatoto Ueno is located not far from Ueno Station. Instead, it’s a cluster of alleys, so you’ll need to study a map and find the alley where the restaurant is located.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno

I found Nadai Unatoto Ueno, a Tokyo eel bowl restaurant, for dinner after exploring Ueno Park.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno Waiting

I arrived at the restaurant at just under 6pm on a weekday evening, and as is typical for a restaurant known for its value for money and delicious food, there was quite a bit of waiting out front. I didn’t see many customers, so I thought I’d be able to get in quickly, but I had to wait almost an hour to get in. Once inside, I realized that the restaurant wasn’t very spacious, and for good reason.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno English Menu

When you sit down, there are several menus in front of you. If you look carefully, there is an English menu, but if you can’t find it, you can ask the staff for it.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno english menu

Starting with the 1100 yen eel rice bowl, which is the most popular item on the menu, there are a variety of different types of eel rice bowls depending on the size. I ordered the 1100 yen eel bowl, which is the signature dish at Nadai Unatoto Oeno.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno english menu

Almost as satisfying as the price of the eel was the price of the alcoholic beverages: a draft beer costs about 500 yen at a regular restaurant, but here it was 330 yen. It seemed like they were having a sale, but it didn’t seem like it since it wasn’t listed on the menu at all. Other alcoholic beverages were also cheap.

Free Miso Soup

If you add Nadai Unatoto as a friend on the Line app using the QR in front of you, you can get free miso soup. The soup was plain and didn’t have any special flavors, but it was a cheap eel bowl that didn’t come with any additional side dishes. If you have the Line app on your phone, you can easily add them by scanning the QR in front of the shop, so I recommend adding them.

1100 yen eel rice bowl

The beer came out first. It was a bargain at 330 yen, but as always, the Japanese draft beer was cold and delicious, even more so after waiting for an hour haha.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno eel rice bowl

For the eel bowl, I was worried that the amount of eel would be too small, but the amount of eel was more than adequate. Although there were two pieces of eel, I didn’t feel like it was insufficient because the eel was thick. When I split the eel with chopsticks, it crumbled even though it was soft. Since it was thick, the eel was oily and savory.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno eel rice bowl

The sweet and savory soy sauce seasoning on the eel was delicious, and it went very well with the rice. There were sauces to go with the eel in front of me, but the sauce on the basic eel was flavorful enough, so I didn’t add any extra.

After enjoying the draft beer, I ordered a drink called Hoppy, which I was curious about because I had heard the name before. I ordered the black of the two types. I found out after my trip that Hoppy is not a drink, but a beverage, and you mix it with the shochu that comes with it. It used to be a substitute for beer in Japan, and it seems to have become popular recently. lol There was something like water in the ice cup, which I now realize was shochu. lol I don’t remember exactly what it tasted like, but it was similar to black beer, so I drank it okay.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno Takeout

Personally, the only thing I would rather do than wait at Nadai Unatoto is take out. When I was waiting patiently at the restaurant, I saw people going straight to the counter to get their food. When I got to the entrance, I realized that this is a restaurant that offers both line delivery and takeout packaging.

Nadai Unatoto Ueno

As you can see from the picture of the eel bowl above, there are no other side dishes provided when you order the eel bowl, so there is no difference between taking it out and eating it in the restaurant, so I thought it would be more satisfying to take it out and eat it without waiting. So next time I go, I think I will take it out and go to the park next door to eat it or eat it at my hostel.

If you want takeout, you can skip the waiting line and just walk right in and place your order. If you wait outside for a while after ordering, they’ll give you a packaged eel bowl.

So there you have it, my favorite unagi restaurant in Tokyo, Japan, Nadai Unatoto Ueno. I have very little experience with unagi in Japan, but this restaurant was just as good as the expensive unagi I’ve had elsewhere. If you’re traveling in Tokyo and you’re in the Oeno Station area, I highly recommend checking it out, as it’s a great place to eat for a meal or take out for a late night snack.