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TokyoTreat Japanese Snacks BlogFamily Restaurants in Japan: Five Amazing Ones to Enjoy!

Family Restaurants in Japan: Five Amazing Ones to Enjoy!

Thuy FangThuy Fang
Published Time
Posted on 
April 25, 2024
A hamburg on a plate at a family resturants.

If you need help deciding where to dine after sightseeing or having fun in Japan, head to one of the family restaurants! They are everywhere in the country and are always loved for their rich menus and highly reasonable prices. Here, we also want to introduce you to five popular and must-try brands in Japan!

Saizeriya

Saizeriya, or “Saize”, is a unique Japanese chain of Italian-style family restaurants. It’s a nice spot to eat yummy Italian food like pizza and pasta but with a Japanese twist!

The story started when Yasuhiko Shogaki, president of the company, worked at a fancy restaurant called Saizeriya during college. He loved it so much that he wanted to share this lovely food with everyone. Western food, especially Italian cuisine, was also trendy in Japan. Later, he took over that restaurant and turned Saizeriya into an Italian restaurant!

The outside of Saizeriya, one of many family restaurants.
Saizeriya is a popular Italian chain! Image via Shutterstock

Saize has a menu packed with all kinds of Italian goodness. They’ve got salads, pasta, pizza, hamburg steak, chicken, seafood, and even lovely desserts! You can try the restaurant’s signature dish – Meat Doria. The dish is a delightful mix of rice, egg, cheese, white sauce, and meat sauce. 

In addition, they also have a drink bar where you can get unlimited soda. Besides, there’s also the option of soup that you can freely refill during your meal. The soup and drinks menu may vary from day to day.

Now, Saizeriya is in Japan and places like China, Taiwan, and Singapore! They even have a factory in Australia. You can find Saizeriya on the roadside, in shopping malls, and in train stations!

Jonathan’s 

Skylark Co. runs Jonathan’s family restaurant chain, which has excellent restaurants all over Japan. The chain started in 1980 when Jonathan’s opened in Nerima, Tokyo. 

Initially, they planned to sell coffee and snacks, but then it became a cool family-style diner. Since then, Jonathan has experienced significant growth. In 1987, they celebrated reaching a milestone of 100 locations, and now they have over 274 branches spread across various locations.

The outside of Jonathan's, one of many family restaurants.
Jonathan’s has many meal sets for you to enjoy! Image via Shutterstock

Jonathan’s offers various yummy items such as pizza, pasta, pancakes, seafood, beef, and sweet parfaits! Moreover, they offer a wide range of options from breakfast to dinner and a fair menu. Every menu serves a variety of both Western and Japanese dishes. And let’s not overlook their fantastic drink bar, where you can choose from ten different types of tea!

One of their most popular dishes is the beef hamburgers, made with 100% juicy Hokkaido beef. They also have adorable treats like fried chicken with a grated radish set, a classic Japanese meal, and tomato ramen, which are ideal for keeping you warm in the winter. 

Are you looking for amazing snacks while enjoying things at a family restaurant? Check out TokyoTreat! TokyoTreat delivers the latest Japanese snacks, sweets, drinks, candy, and noodles from Japan directly to your door!

Bamiyan

Bamiyan is a beloved Chinese restaurant in Japan, known for its wide range of tasty meals offered at affordable prices. The restaurant was named “Bamiyan” with the hope of bringing people together through Chinese food. Even the logo, featuring peaches, is inspired by Chinese culture and symbolizes beauty and deliciousness. The first Bamiyan store was established in 1986. Over the years, they’ve expanded across Japan with over 350 stores nationwide. 

The outside of Bamiyan.
You can enjoy some of the best Chinese food here! Image via Shutterstock

The restaurant has a cozy atmosphere with charming Chinese-inspired decor, making it a favorite spot for many Japanese people. The dishes here are almost authentic Chinese, from gyoza (dumplings) and chahan (fried rice) to mapo tofu and the special dessert, almond. Significantly, they also have a variety of Japanese and Chinese-style ramen like miso, shoyu, or tantan ramen.

But what makes Bamiyan unique is its all-you-can-eat hot pot menu, perfect for a fun family meal. You’ll find a fantastic drink bar with many iced teas, like pu-erh, Fujian oolong, and lychee black tea. They’re perfect for cooling off while you eat.

Bikkuri Donkey

Bikkuri Donkey is a diner chain famous for its savory hamburger steaks. It started in Morioka City in 1968 and now has over 343 spots all over Japan. People of all ages love Bikkuri Donkey because it’s a great place to have a tasty meal without spending too much money.

The name “Bikkuri Donkey” means surprised donkey, as they want you to be surprised when you visit. When you step inside a Bikkuri Donkey, you’ll feel like you’re on a fun adventure! Each has a unique look, with rustic decorations and cool stuff. 

The sign for Bikkuri Donkey.
This restaurant specializes in steak! Image via Shutterstock

They have a bunch of different dishes, but the star of the show is their hamburger steaks. These juicy patties come in different sizes and are served with rice, fries, and salad. You can even choose toppings like cheese, egg, or gravy to make it yummy! But that’s not all! Bikkuri Donkey also has other tasty foods, such as beef steak, pasta, and crispy calamari. They also have desserts like parfait that you’ll love.

Gusto

Gusto is a place where you can have both Japanese and Western dishes! This brand is all over Japan, so no matter where you are, there’s probably one nearby! From Japanese noodles to Italian pasta, Gusto has it all.

Skylark operates Gusto, Jonathan’s, Bamiyan, and numerous other chains. The company opened its first Gusto restaurant in 1992. Since then, the chain has grown into a well-known brand in Japan, with nearly 1,400 locations nationwide.

The outside of Cafe Gusto.
Their most popular dish is the Cheese in Hamburg. Image via Shutterstock

At Gusto, the “Cheese IN Hamburger” steals the spotlight as one of their most popular dishes! Gusto elevates the juicy hamburger patty by adding creamy cheese directly into the patty, ensuring that each bite is a delightful surprise. Besides, they also have a drink bar where you can enjoy unlimited soft drinks, juice, tea, and coffee. 

But what sets Gusto apart is its easy ordering system. You can use a touchscreen tablet to choose your meal, and then a cute cat robot will bring your food to your table. 

Why should I check out these family restaurants in Japan?

A mother and adult daughter enjoying themselves at a restaurants.
Have you ever been to a Japanese family restaurant before? Image via Shutterstock

Family restaurants in Japan truly offer delicious food and a cozy atmosphere for everyone to enjoy. They’re perfect for family outings or casual meals with friends. With a long-standing legacy, mouthwatering menu, and playful atmosphere, they continue to delight diners across Japan, making them true culinary icons! Have you visited any of these places? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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