Hamadayama 3-32-3, Suginami-ku, 106-0041 Tokyo
Tel: 03-3329-3939
For reservation: 0066-967-32313 (free of charge)


Entrance (right)

Max 20 people can be accomodated with a counter and three tables.

The owner couple of Donburi-bachi with the photo of their old friend Tony.

Donburi-bachi is an izakaya(*) located only a few steps away from Hamadayama station. An elderly couple and their son run the izakaya.

Nowadays the Japanese izakaya scene is dominated by chains. While they are relatively clean and economical, their food and drink are centrally controlled and the service staff consists mostly of young part timers who have little knowledge about their products and serve according to the manuals. However, in the Hamadayama area we fortunately have many privately owned and highly individualistic izakayas, competing with each other.

Donburi-bachi(**) occupies a good location and I have been wanting to try it. The opportunity came from Canada. A few weeks ago a Canadian from Vancouver sent me a mail and explained that he had lived in Hamadayama from 1991 to 1994 and missed the people and the good cooking in some restaurants and bars. He named three restaurants and I found two of them, including Donburi-bachi, were still there.

However, nearly a month went by before I finally went to Donburi-bachi with a photo of the Canadian internet friend. That is because I do not go to izakayas in Hamadayama so often, because we usually use izakayas to get together with friends and business partners and the center of Tokyo serves better for that purpose.

I explained to the owner couple of Donburi-bachi why I came here, and showed the photo. They well remembered Tony-san and said after gazing at the photo for a while that Tony-san had slightly put on weight. Their son also remembered him very well, though he was at the time only an elementary school child. Anyhow they had lost the contact with Tony-san and were pleased at the news I brought them in the hope that they could get in touch with him again.

Donburi-bachi offers a good variety of sake and shochu(***). Their dishes are various, and they are all carefully made with the gentle taste of homemade cooking. Beer drinkers must like the small glass of free beer that is served immediately after they are seated at Donburi-bachi.

I would like to show some dishes that my daughter and I ordered. There were a variety of yakitori menus. I found that the "Tsukune(****)-yakitori of Donburi-bachi" had a slightly unusual taste, and strangely delicious. They had also pot menus. Among them I chose and loved this "Cooked tofu sukiyaki style" where tofu was cooked in a soy-sugar soup with egg. This seasoning was similar to the famous sukiyaki menu. It is true that most Japanese dishes are very soft. This is certainly one of the softest dishes and can be enjoyed even by old people who have lost all of their teeth. The dishes of Donburi-bachi have a basically traditional and homely taste.
"Izakaya" is Japanese style bar. It serves alcoholic drinks and tidbits. Spanish tapas bar appears to be a similar institution.

"Donburi" means big bowl (See also this page on donburi). The name of this izakaya "Donburi-bachi" has the same meaning.

"Shochu" is distilled alcohol native to Japan. Its ingredients are such as rice, barley, sweet potato, black sugar and buckwheat and their alcohol percentage is usually around 25%.

"Tsukune" means meat ball.

Yakitori - From left to right, skin, meat ball and gizzard

Cooked tofu sukiyaki style

Carrot cake