Dining with baby in Tokyo

The Man and I, we love our food very much and every time we head back to Tokyo, it’s a food-feast where we plan our food itinerary meticulously to include all the food that we so love. Of course, with Bubba as our new travel companion, we can’t exactly do that. Most of the fine-dining restaurants and famed sushi joints would frown upon us should we attempt to bring a baby along into their restaurant.

So our meals were planned rather fluidly and mostly by the Man or what we felt like having for the day. Thankfully in Tokyo, a lot of the establishments that we visited were good enough for our bellies and our littlest travel companion was such a charmer most of the time, so we are blessed to be able to enjoy the meal.

Here’s what we ate with Bubba in tow:

IMG_8752Revisited Bills at Omote-Sando Hills simply because I really wanted to try either their famed Corn Fritters or have the Ricotta Hotcakes. The place is pretty child-friendly and we were showed to a table where we could conveniently park our Zen Yoyo.  IMG_8747Bubba was in a good mood so we managed to squeeze in a couple of Mama and  Bubba shots. 🙂

IMG_8739The Man was in need of caffeine and frankly speaking so was I, as I try to limit my caffeine intake occasionally. Finally managed to try the famed Corn Fritters which was really very yummy with the avocado salsa. Would have love to have another go at the Ricotta Hotcakes but was saving my tummy for the afternoon hi-tea instead.

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Our first meal in Tokyo was back at our fave Shabu Shabu place in Ginza called Rangetsu.  We were not sure if babies were allowed but we asked them nicely and they accommodated. The place had steps so the Man had to carry the stroller up. Bubba was fast asleep in her ride so we managed to enjoy most of the meal and then took turns to finish our noodles at the very end when she woke up.L1010226The little one is quite a charmer too. The diners at the next table kept looking at her and played with her while we were having our meal. Fine by us for it also kept her occupied. 🙂

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My birthday dinner was celebrated at the Ropponggi Hills Club in a private room with an awesome view of the Tokyo Tower. He decided to book the private room so we could bring Bubba along and if she cried, she wouldn’t be a nuisance to other patrons.

IMG_8688The Japanese meal was simply delicious and we had a good time indulging over the meal plus fussing over Sophie who decided to poop and kept us busy.  IMG_8689We were also very impressed with the level of service taken to accommodate the little one during our meal. She had her very own bed for her to lie on while we sat down to have our meal. This place definitely top our list for dining with babies. 🙂

IMG_8844The Man was itching to do a meal that involved fine-dining. I was apprehensive about it initially. We walked past L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon at Ropponggi Hills. We didn’t have a reservation but he walked in and asked if there were seats available. Well, they did but only at the counter. I wasn’t sure if we could have a proper meal with Sophie  while seated on the high-chairs. IMG_8841Well, perhaps it was a blessing in disguise for we baby-wore her that day. She resisted initially but after a couple of cries, she managed to settle down and fell asleep in the carrier.

IMG_8847Talk about multitasking! The Man baby-wearing Sophie, having his meal and working-on-the-go.

IMG_8845She slept through a good part of the meal for us to enjoy the starter, the main course and our cuppa of tea. Whee.. we felt like we outdone ourselves for this meal.

Well, of course not all of the meals we had were hits. I really wanted to have Teppanyaki and despite booking a private room in the restaurant, it was a stressful meal that the Man and I had for it was cramped and smokey. We felt like we did Bubba an injustice by bringing her to such a smokey place. We gobbled our meal as quickly as we possibly could and even skipped dessert because she was getting cranky and stressed up in such a smokey environment.

The next evening, in order to make it up to her, we decided to order in and have sushi in the comfort of our hotel room instead.

IMG_8824So I guess it ain’t that bad traveling with a bub, sure I couldn’t go back to my fave Ichiran Ramen, my fave yakitori joint or do any Michelin-star restaurant but we found new places to dine with a different kind of experience.

Here are some tips I thought I could share if you are ever traveling to Tokyo with a 3month old baby:

  • IMG_8765Get help from your concierge on a list of restaurants that would accept young babies / kids. Our concierge was of great help, all we needed to do was to tell her the type of cuisine we felt like having for the day (ie: Soba, Italian, Sushi, etc).
  • Some restaurants have private rooms, so you could ask if they would allow you to use the private room for a small fee.
  • Dine at restaurants in shopping malls. We spent most of our time around shopping malls and found that the restaurants there were basically good enough for our bellies. Plus point for doing this is when the bub fuss, you could quickly zip down to the nursery and sort the little one out.
  • Look out for family friendly restaurants by checking out the crowd that goes into the restaurants. If you spy ladies with babies or young kids in the restaurant, chances are they will accept you and your bubba too.
  • If all else fails, either buy back your fave food from the food mart in shopping malls or order room-service. That way, you enjoy your meal in peace with bubba lying in bed.
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19 thoughts on “Dining with baby in Tokyo

  1. Phoebe says:

    The food makes me drool… I love Japanese cuisine and really hope to go there in the future. Nice private room you have and don’t need to worry about noise to enjoy your dinner.

  2. mmlittlee says:

    I love traveling with babies who can’t sit yet because they are so easy to care for! We went on our first trip at 2 months and what a breeze it was! So good that service was top notch in Japan. Love it that she even has her own “bed”!

    • Lady J says:

      You are completely right about traveling with babies who can’t sit or walk and run. And I was a nervous wreck then thinking how difficult it would be to head around with a 3-month old!

  3. Angie.S says:

    It’s an incredible feat to dine with babies or young kids in fine-dining setting. Must get notes from you on the nice places to eat in Tokyo. We just visited in June and planning a return trip prob next year 😀

  4. Steven Teo says:

    Travelling with the little one sure is a totally different experience. Babies are easy to care for but the amount of stuff to carry around is insane at times. Love the view of the tower from your photo of your little bubba!

  5. Bumble Bee Mum says:

    I do find that dining out in Japan is not particularly kids-friendly… Many of the food joints are cramp and some do not even have seating areas (people just stand and eat).. Nice to read about your account on which restaurants do welcome kids. Very useful to families travelling to Tokyo! Bills at Omotesando look so good, I think I will try it out for my next Tokyo trip. Thanks for sharing!

    • Lady J says:

      Arh yes, we found it harder to dine out in the evenings but it wasn’t too bad during lunch. I’ve been told that some Ramen joints are also now more accommodating to young families so let’s see 🙂

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