Cape Town’s Unmissable Japanese Restaurants
Cape Town is the culinary hub of South Africa, so it’s not unusual that the Japanese dining scene offers a wide range of variety. Whether it be sushi, ramen or more of a modern-fusion, this city has got you covered. Menus drawn not only from Japan, but from South African style and produce. Check out our favourite Japanese restaurants below.
Tjing Tjing Momiji and Torii
A tranquil and meditative space offering a more formal Japanese dining experience. This restaurant stays true to the formal structure and flow of the traditional Kaiseki menu, while embracing local and seasonal ingredients.
Opening times: Thursday, Friday and Saturday, from 18:30-22h30
Offers casual Japanese food from yokocho (street food alleys) in a space inspired by the multiple layers of old and modern Tokyo. Come for the food, stay for the cool environment.
Location: 165 Longmarket St, Cape Town City Centre
Good to know: miso aubergine is out of this world.
Opening times: Tuesday – Saturday: 10h00 – 22h30.
Contact: 021 422 4920
Modern Japanese food in a cosy, relaxed environment. Classics with a twist, think duck with caviar. Their menu is separated into ocean (umi) and land (tochi) Very good, very affordable.
Location: 49 Napier St, De Waterkant
Good to know: salmon de miso is one of our favourites
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 12h00 – 15h00 | 18h00-22h00
Contact: 064 661 7474
Located in De Waterkant underneath Piano Bar, the small but inviting restaurant is popular for their baos. This tachinomi (Japanese for standing bar) ticks all the boxes, amazing food, attentive staff, and cute location.
Location: 47 Napier St, De Waterkant
Good to know: FRIED CHICKEN BAO!
Opening times: Tuesday 16h00-22h00 | Wednesday – Saturday: 12h00 – 15h00 | 16h00-22h00
An Asian Fusion eatery on the corner of Shortmarket and Loop Street. The restaurant has become famous for Robata or Japanese style Braai as well the Chef’s Bento Box which is composed of his favourite dishes. Come hungry, leave happy.
Location: 86 Loop Street
Good to know: The bento box lunch special is a great bang for your buck.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 12h00 – 22h30.
Contact: 021 422 0635
Owner and celebrated chef Arata Koga (previously sushi master at Tank in Cape Town and Genki in Stellenbosch) has created this Izakaya that has a great atmosphere, generous portions, and a loyal following.
Location: The Rockwell, 32 Prestwich St, Green Point.
Good to know: They operate during loadshedding, so you’ll never be stuck on where to go when those lights go off.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 11h00 – 22h00.
Contact: 021 421 4520
Where to start, Kyoto Garden is an award-winning restaurant that is a shrine to Japanese cuisine. They offer so much more than sushi and sashimi. At Kyoto Garden, fresh seafood is the specialty, with top-quality, unusual ingredients sourced from around the world, from farmed abalone to Mozambican conch, eel, sea urchin, and more.
Location: 11 Kloof Nek Rd, Gardens
Good to know: A bit pricey but the food is so worth it.
Opening times: Tuesday – Saturday: 17h30 – 24h00.
Contact: 021 422 2001
Three Wise Monkeys
This popular noodle bar is a Seapoint favourite. Great vibe, generous portions. The ramen bowls are enough to feed two people.
Location: 77 Regent Road
Good to know: Walk-in only.
Opening times: Monday: 15h00- 23h00 | Tuesday – Sunday: 11h00 – 23h00.
Contact: 021 433 1837
This restaurant is tucked away on a side road off of Bree Street, so it’s easy to miss. After going you’ll never want to miss it again! It’s as close to authentic Japanese food as you can get in Cape Town.
Location: 77 Church St, Cape Town City Centre
Good to know: Hard to find parking in this area, so it’s better to Uber.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 11h00 – 22h00.
Contact: 021 424 2491
Located in the residential neighbourhood of Oranjezicht, this cozy, yet modern eatery will almost make you feel like you are on a Wes Anderson film set. Owner Graham Oldfiled, was head chef at Chef Warehouse on Bree Street so you know when you come to eat you’ll get food thats nothing short of amazing. Dishes like Yellowtail sashimi with Ponzu dressing, radish, pickled jalapeños, ginger to Hoisin Duck bao with cucumber.
Location: 3 Vredehoek Ave, Oranjezicht
Good to know: Their prawn toast has been the talk of the town for a hot minute. Try it, you will 100% order more after the first bite.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 18h00 – 23h00.
Contact: 066 022 1165
Owned by Cape Town’s culinary legend, Papa San and his chef-partner Ben Bettendorf, this sushi and ramen eatery has been a Cape Town favourite since it’s opening in 2016. Kimono’s draping the restaurant wall and their authentic and innovative sushi is served on genuine Japanese crockery. Eating there is truly a different experience, one that will keep you coming back.
Location: 14 Long street
Good to know: Sashimi! So fresh! So yum!
Opening times: Tuesday – Saturday: 12h00 – 14h00 | 18h00- closing.
Contact: 021 418 4040
‘Nobu Nobu Nobu Nobu Nobu nobu, I just throwed a private dinner in LA’ this world-famous restaurant has been a hub for celebrities and the elite alike, so much so that Drake and Future even wrote a song about them. Located inside the One&Only Cape Town hotel, expect an unforgettable evening of gourmet excellence, fresh creations and masterful Japanese-Peruvian menus.
Location: One & Only Cape Town Hotel
Good to know: It’s a seasonal dish but the Canadian lobster hobayaki is to die for.
Opening times: Tuesday – Sunday: 18h30 – 22h30.
Contact: 021 431 5888
Inspired by Chef Peter Tempelhoff’s world travels, this Japanese inspired menu will leave you at a loss for words. They believe that South Africa’s freedom is tempered by the rigours of contemporary cuisine to create a restaurant at the edge. At the edge of what? Guess you’ll have to go there and find out!
Location: 5th Floor Speakers Corner, 37 Parliament St.
Good to know: Set price menu, so save up!
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 12h00 – 14h00| 18h00-21h00
Contact: 021 286 2733
A romantic setting, attentive staff, amazing food, what more could you want? The menu is a mix of multiple asian cuisines. Japanese, Chinese, Thai and Indian, so you’ll be set for options.
Location: 58 Burg Street, CBD
Good to know: Dim sum it up!
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 12h00 – 15h00| 18h00-23h00
Contact: 021 424 7000
Their philosophy is one that pushes the boundaries of Japanese cuisine, which they do with their unique style of Izakaya dishes. Yu’s menu lends itself to a sharing experience with offerings such as dim sum, sushi and a variety of other asian tapas.
Location: 57 Heerengracht St, Foreshore, inside the ONYX Hotel
Good to know: Go with a group to order a bunch of tapas to share.
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 12h00 – 22h00
Willoughby & Co
Eating inside of a mall is a little off-putting to say the least, however this restaurant is anything but! Since it’s opening in the mid ‘90s there have been queues out the door to try Chef Sam’s fusion style Japanese cuisine. Ranging from the freshest sushi to tempura dishes, oyster shooters to soups and salads, this Japanese restaurant will leave you incredibly satisfied.
Location: Victoria Wharf Shopping Centre
Good to know: Can never go wrong with their sushi or tom yum soup.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 12h00 – 22h00
Contact: 021 418 6115
Seapoint’s hidden gem! Always packed, always good, always affordable. Their menu has a mix of Japanese and Chinese items, endless options for sushi, noodles, salads, you name it.
Location: 204 Main Road Sea Point
Good to know: Spicy chicken egg noodles! Sashimi salad! Prawn dumplings! All incredibly delicious.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 11h00 – 22h00
Contact: 021 434 8899
*Pssst if you’re unsure about using chopsticks check out our guide on how to eat sushi properly here
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