The buzz: The latest izakaya to open in Nihonmachi, Torayoshi is owned by the same people as next door’s Nagiya, which pretty much nails the homey, slightly steamy Japanese tavern vibe—the result being that it’s generally packed out, even on weekdays. This chain, which boasts three branches in Tokyo, also promises to stick to the trusted casual drink and dining concept, but with a bigger emphasis on grilled meat.

The décor: Everything about Torayoshi is painstakingly Japanese, from its signage (squint and you’ll see the Thai in the corner), the hanging lanterns and the bar set-up. The interior is rather minimally decorated with Japanese posters on the wall and liquor bottles behind the bar. The place is also small, with room for less than 10 tables with stools. And since Torayoshi lets you man your own small tabletop iron grill, it gets a bit smoky inside, so avoid visiting on a good hair day.

The food: As mentioned, the specialty is grilled meat. Many cuts of beef are imported—and highly recommended—like the chewy pancreas (B250), intestine (B250) and shoulder (B300), but we think the short ribs (B320) are a fine place to start. If you don’t feel like DIY dining, they also offer a long list of a la carte dishes like cabbage salad topped with poached egg (B95), salmon don (rice topped with salmon sashimi, B250), simmered ox tongue (B210) and gokai nokke (six sushi rolls heaped with a mix of seafood, B490) which the owners say is particularly sought after at their Tokyo branches.

The drinks: Drinks are a major part of any izakaya and, here, they are the first things on the menu. Soju by the glass ranges from B100-B200. Draft beer is Asahi (B90) and sake ranges from B180-B390. Note, some bottles are limited to three per person.

The crowd: It’s frequented by groups of office workers on weekdays, Thai families and Japanese couples on weekends. Pieng-or Mongkolkumnuankhet

Venue Details
Address: Torayoshi, Nihonmachi, 109 Sukhumvit Soi 26, Bangkok, Thailand
Phone: 02-258-2017
Cuisine: Japanese
Open since: April, 2012
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 4-11pm; Sat-Sun 9am-11pm
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