Expensive Japanese Meals at Cheaper Prices During Lunch in Japan

Japan offers a wide range of budgets for dining out. You can have a cheap filling set meal for under $10 USD or an indulgent wagyu beef dinner for over $300 USD. Without having to choose between the two extremes, you can still feast on indulgent meals in Japan in an affordable way: Dine at expensive restaurants during lunch instead of dinner!

Expensive Splurge Meals in Japan

If you plan a trip to Japan, you must include at least one splurge meal. Japanese restaurants in Japan are not like those abroad offering a wide range of everything in one single menu. In Japan, Japanese restaurants have their own specialty in an attempt to perfect that type of dish.

While the country offers cheaper versions of splurge meals, it is worth spending more to taste the premium ingredients that you can only find in Japan. Splurge meals include sukiyaki, teppanyaki, tempura, sushi, and kaiseki.

Choose one, or narrow it down to a few, of your favorite Japanese dishes. Or, perhaps try a new dish that you can really only experience when in Japan.

One of the ultimate splurge meals in Japan: Feasting on the local A5 Wagyu beef! For the beef, you can dine at several types of restaurants including teppanyaki, yakiniku, kaiseki, sukiyaki, and international establishments for a taste of this melt-in-your-mouth specialty
At sukiyaki restaurants, it is not just about the food but also the showmanship of the service that goes along with the meal. Your server cooks and serves the meal with deliberate ceremony to honor the meat, ingredients, and the customer


Dine at Expensive Restaurants During Lunch Instead of Dinner

Typically you dine on splurge meals during dinner so you can take your time, enjoy some drinks, and end the night with that highlight. In Japan, splurge meals usually come as a set menu with a small appetizer bites, a couple medium size entree plates, and a dessert (and even more dishes if you choose to spend and eat more).

Dinner set menus are priced according to the quality of the restaurant and what you are eating. If you want to save a significant amount of money, dine at these expensive restaurants during lunch instead of dinner. Lunch sets offer these great prices to lure more guests during the day when most locals are too busy with work to leisurely dine.

With the same set menu and the same amount of food, lunch sets in Japan are significantly cheaper with savings ranging from $20 to $100 USD. Note that a la carte menu items are typically priced the same.

Kappo-style tempura. In Japan, tempura restaurants typically offer tempura bar seats in which you can have front row seats to watch the expert chef prepare, fry, and serve your tempura one piece at a time – this is truly something to experience in Japan
Lunch sets include the standard and premium pieces of tempura, such as shrimp, seasonal vegetables, eel, mushrooms, and more. If you choose to dine at a table instead to the tempura bar, or if you have no choice but the tables, you will have one or two rounds of plated tempura
If you have the fortune of going back to Japan again and again, dine at tempura bars during different seasons of the year to taste the seasonal vegetables and seafood of the country. During the fall, you can taste crab and mushrooms


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