“Hozenji Yokocho” expands with the center at Hozenji Temple that is loved as Mizukake Fudo-san.
It is a cobbled alley that became famous also in “Meoto Zenzai” of the Japanese novel, and also, it is an area where various restaurants are lined up.
There are varieties of genres of gourmets, and every one of these are where you wish to go and are famous.
It is of course OK that you can go around as many restaurants as you wish, and I will introduce to the famous restaurants of such Hozenji Yokocho.
Restaurants of a Back Alley, “Hozenji Yokocho” in Namba
In a place, where entered to inside a bit of an alley from “Dotonbori”, a lively sightseeing spot, there is “Hozenji Yokocho” of a cobbled with Naniwa elegance.
With the center at “Hozenji Temple” that is famous for Mizukake Fudo-san, there are gathered long standing traditional Japanese restaurants and famous restaurants of wide varieties of gourmets, which satisfy palates of Osaka people who are particular about food.
I will introduce to the famous restaurants that I wish you to enjoy in such Hozenji Yokocho.
Hozenji Temple that is a Local Guardian Deity
In a place, where you entered a one step to an alley from the Sennichi-mae shopping streets, there is “Hozenji Temple”.
The place where is the temple site is the alley street, where people coming and going, and it is a small temple of Jodo sect that is rooted in the region.
At the time of built in the early Edo Period, because the temple was doing Sennichi Nenbutsu (Buddhist teachings of doing devotion and practice for one thousand days), it is called as Sennichi-Dera (one thousand days temple), and the name of “Sennichi-Mae (a front of one thousand days)” still remains in this region until now.
Although some temple buildings were once burnt down, it is said that only this Nishimuki-Fudo-Myoo (Mizukake Fudo-san) remained.
Praying by splashing water to the statue, it is said that Buddha listens to any prayers, including thriving business, recovery from illness, and good marriage.
Since many people splash water everyday, the whole body is covered with green lush moss, so it emits distinctive atmosphere.
Meoto Zenzai (Japanese Sweets)
Right next to Hozenji Temple, there is a long-standing Japanese sweets restaurant “Meoto Zenzai” that became famous in the novel “Meoto Zenzai”.
The specialty here is “zenzai (rice cakes in sweet azuki, or red beans soup)”.
Zenzai that is for one person will be served divided into two bowls.
If a married couple or a couple eats it together, it is said that their relationship becomes harmonious.
As the restaurant is located as if connected to the neighboring Hozenji Temple, you can find it easily.
“Zenzai” of the specialty. Because it is said that if you eat one bowl with two persons, you will separate, it is said that from the beginning by served in two bowls, you will become harmonious.
Beautiful inside of the restaurant with sense of cleanliness. Inside the restaurant, there hung goods, including a poster and a colored paper of “Meoto Zenzai” that became also a drama.
Address: Hozenji MEOUTO Bldg., 1-2-10 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: 10AM to 10PM (Close)
Holiday: Open everyday
Average budget: during day: less than 999 Yen, at night: less than 999 Yen.
Hozenji Yokocho Yakizen (Okonomiyaki)
Namba is the Japan’s most hot-spot for okonomiyaki!
Located in Hozenji Yokocho of such Namba, a popular restaurant “Yakizen” is always crowded with guests.
Modern-yaki of a big meal is the most popular, and because it is with firm dough and many toppings, it is very filling!
Your appetite increases also with a bit spicy sauce.
Besides, as there are fulfilled with Teppan-yaki Grill menu, there are many people who enjoy them with sake wine.
Appearance of the shop that makes you feel Japanese elegance.
“Zen-chan”, a mascot of the restaurant, welcomes you at the entrance.
When at night, it will be illuminated brightly, so it becomes a mark in a dark and narrow alley.
The famous “Modern-yaki” that looks very filling and makes you more expected.
It is served on a very hot iron plate.
Also full of fresh cabbage and bean sprout.
Menu of Teppan-yaki Grill is also fulfilled, such as grills wrapped in foil, skewers, seafood, and meats.
You like to enjoy these with sake wine, don’t you?
On the ground floor, there are counter seats with Showa retro atmosphere.
It is also fun to watch okonomiyaki baked finely one by one in front of your eyes.
On the second floor, there are tatami-mat style seats, and you can fully enjoy dining relaxed.
Address: 1-1 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: Weekdays 12PM to 3PM (Last Order at 2:15PM), 5PM to 10:30PM (Last Order at 9:45PM), Last entrance to the restaurant at 9:30PM. Sat/Sun/Holiday 12PM to 10:30PM (Last Order at 9:45PM), Last entrance to the restaurant at 9:30PM.
Holiday: Every Wednesday (when Wednesday is holiday, close on the next day)
Average budget: during day: from 1,000 Yen to 1,999 Yen, at night: from 1,000 Yen to 1,999 Yen.
Wasabi (Deep fried skewers)
“Wasabi” is the Japanese modern fashionable deep fried skewers restaurant.
The restaurant serves food stuffs, including fruits of the sea, fruits of the mountains, and seasonal fresh food, in original arrangement.
So, you can fully enjoy distinctive skewers that you cannot eat in any other restaurant.
Gentle to your body, vegetables of natural farming are mainly used, and the restaurant is also popular among ladies.
The restaurant is fashionable with the black lacquered appearance that can only be seen in Japan.
A paper lantern is hanging in the storefront, with written as “wasabi” in letters like artistic.
This is the dish that you can taste at “Wasabi”
Seasonal ingredients are prepared in each time.
Deep fried skewers with thinner flours are tasty with gentle crunchy texture.
Each skewer is served one by one in gentle manner.
There are many original menus, so you may become trying many of them.
Inside of the restaurant is the Japanese modern and calm.
It is a beautiful space that even a lady can enter at ease.
Although there are only counter seats, as the restaurant serves politely to each guest one by one, you can feel the Japanese hospitality.
Address: 1-1-17 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours:[Tue/Wed/Fri/Sat] 5PM to 11PM (Last order at 9:30PM) [Sat/Sun/holiday] 5PM to 11PM (Last order at 9:30PM) *Mon/Thu are regular holidays
Holiday: Every Monday and Thursday
Average budget: during day: from 10,000 Yen to 14,999 Yen, at night: from 10,000 Yen to 14,999 Yen.
Ebiya (Japanese lobster dish)
From the Japanese traditional restaurant that was established in the Showa 25 (1950), the second successor was fell in love with Ise-ebi (Japanese lobster).
And he opened “Ebi-ya” as the specialized restaurant of Ise-ebi in the Showa 46 (1971).
You can enjoy Ise-ebi known as fortunate food, a symbol of a long life, in various cooking ways, such as sashimi arranged in the original shape of the lobster, simmered lobster, sukinabe (a hot pot like sukiyaki), and deep fried lobster.
Please try fully enjoying faint sweetness and plump and juicy texture.
Although it is high class foodstuff, you can enjoy casually in a space where you can relax as if you are at home.
“Live fresh Ise-ebi sashimi and assorted fish sashimi” that you can fully enjoy Ise-ebi lobster of very fresh texture and fresh sashimi.
If you enjoy Ise-ebi, you cannot definitely miss live fresh sashimi.
“Deep fried Ise-ebi with a carapace and creme croquettes with Ise-ebi” that you can enjoy grilled and fried Ise-ebi, which increases sweetness when heated.
Soft and creamy cream croquettes are masterpiece.
It is a Japanese relaxed space, including with light beaming from shoji slides, and tatami-mat.
Address: 1-1-16 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours:[Lunch] 12PM to 2:30PM, [Dinner] 5:30PM to 11PM (Last order at 9:30PM)
Holiday: From December 31 till January 2
Average budget: during day: from 2,000 Yen to 2,999 Yen, at night: from 10,000 Yen to 14,999 Yen.
Shoubentangotei (Japanese cuisines)
Established in the Meiji 26 (1893), it is a long-standing Japanese cuisines restaurant “Shoubentangotei”.
This restaurant that also appears in the novel of Sakunosuke Oda is famous, and it was burnt down once by fire in 2002.
But, the appearance is reproduced faithfully, including facade of the past, with thought of those who know about that time.
Inside of the restaurant is a calm space with grace, and you can fully enjoy the Japanese cuisines elaborated by superb skills of chefs.
A popular dish “Miso Oden”.
It is a dish that konnyaku yam roots, radish, tofu (bean-curd), and seasonal vegetables are topped with carefully made and mixed miso, and its grace taste sinks into your body.
Beautiful sashimi and kizushi (salted blue skin fish) that you will find the skills of chefs are topped with Sanbaizu (mixed sauce of vinegar, soy sauce and mirin), and refreshing taste is great.
Inside of the restaurant is bright and calm with grace.
On the ground floor, there are counter seats where you can watch skills of chefs in front of your eyes and table seats, and on the second floor, there are private rooms, in which you can fully enjoy dish in full relax, etc.
Address: 1-7-12 Dotonbori, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours:Please check with the restaurant.
Holiday: Every Sunday
Average budget: during day: from 5,000 Yen to 5,999 Yen, at night: from 8,000 Yen to 9,999 Yen.
Varieties of dishes used foodstuff of each of four seasons are, not to mention, very tasty.
And it is the restaurant where you can also enjoy the masterpiece dishware served, including made by Rosanjin, and of Baccarat.
The dishes that utilize the ingredients as much as possible do not make you feel the oldness, while keeping the traditions.
With sensitive and deep taste, it makes you feel happy.
All the dishes used thoroughly domestic produced ingredients are that you can fully enjoy the superb taste with extracted beautifulness of ingredients.
Please enjoy also appreciating beautiful dishware.
At the end of dining, you can enjoy seasoned rice with seasonal ingredients cooked in an iron pot. This is “ayu (sweetfish) rice”.
Rice, full of the flavor of ingredients, is supreme bliss taste.
The counter made with one piece of Japanese cypress tree of more than 600 year old.
Please enjoy the supreme dining time, while watching skillful handling of chefs unfolding in front of your eyes.
Address: 1-7-11 Dotonbori, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours:5PM to 9PM We close for lunch.
Holiday: Every Sunday
Average budget: budget: during day: from 20,000 Yen to 29,999 Yen, at night: 30,000 Yen and above.
Hozenji Asakusa (Blowfish cuisine)
It is the long standing restaurant “Hozenji Asakusa”, where you can fully enjoy dishes of Torafugu (Japanese pufferfish) of Kyushu, the home of Torafugu, and of Suppon (a softshell turtle), full of collagen.
Because the restaurant is particular about “connoisseur, skills, and size (volume)”, it seems that it stops serving during April through September when blowfish become thin.
So, please be careful.
A La Carte dishes are also fulfilled, including from tecchiri (blowfish hot pot) that is popular as Osaka gourmet, tessa (fugu sashimi), shirayaki (broiled without seasoning), and yakishimozukuri (half-sashimi, grilled with strong fire on fish skin, and cooled in icy water.) Please fully enjoy blowfish and Suppon thoroughly and completely.
The elaborate “tecchiri”, using only blowfish that is full of meat.
Please enjoy it with secretly transmitted ponzu hand-made with “Yukou (paired sudachi and daidai)”, a product of Tokushima Prefecture. Please fully enjoy a bit different taste.
* Ponzu is sauce based of soy sauce with citrus juice.
* Sudachi and daidai are kinds of Japanese citrus.
After cutting, to increase the taste, “tessa” will be aged firmly for one day.
Please enjoy it with combination of toppings, including spring onion, momiji-oroshi (grated radish with red chills), and sudachi.
You can enjoy dining in a Japanese room that is comfortable as you are at home.
As there are other rooms, including horigotatsu (a kotatsu built into a floor), chairs on tatami-mat room, and table seats, even those who have concerns on foot and back can enjoy dining in easy posture.
* Kotatsu: Japanese style of table on the floor, using sitting on the floor.
Address: 1-1-12 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: 4PM to 9:30PM
Holiday: 3rd Sunday during October to March.
Sun/holiday during April to September.
Average budget: at night: 10,000 Yen to 14,999 Yen
Hozenji Yokocho Seitaro(Sushi)
There are many famous restaurants for sushi in Hozenji Yokocho.
Among them, I introduce “Seitaro”.
An owner, who was a son of a fish dealer, serves sushi and seafood dishes of fresh seafood that he procures from original human connections, with skills of a chef and a playful mind.
You can fully enjoy carefully selected ingredients that have been checked by visiting to the origin place of products, including not only seafood, but also rice, seaweeds, and gingers.
It is located right next to “Honkogetsu” that is introduced earlier.
Sushi that makes you feel skills of a chef, with extracted good taste of each foodstuff as much as possible.
Let’s taste carefully one by one.
A bit different dish, squid sashimi “Ika naruto-maki (frozen squid sashimi in a spiral whirlpool-like pattern)”.
Frozen squid rolled up round, and it melts little by little.
It is a very good dish with its frozen texture.
Inside of the restaurant is in calm atmosphere, where lining up fresh fish on a counter.
Only counter seats are available on the ground floor, and there are private rooms on the second floor.
Address: 1-7-11 Dotonbori, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: 4PM to 10:30PM
Holiday: No scheduled holiday (Sunday is basically a holiday.)
Average budget: at night: 10,000 Yen to 14,999 Yen
Salon De The Alcyon(Desserts)
There is a salon where you can enjoy western desserts even in Hozenji Yokocho where with historical mood.
At “Salon De The Alcyon”, of which there are many fans also among celebrities, of course, you can get it to take away, and also you can fully enjoy slowly desserts in a salon on the second floor.
Among those, “Mont Blanc (Creamy chestnut cake)” is so popular that shall be sold out every day, and there visit many people who seek for this taste.
And, there are abundant kinds of aromatic black teas, available only in a black tea specialized shop, and it is the shop where you can enjoy your tea-time of the supreme bliss.
The most popular “Mont Blanc”.
Chestnut cream of produced in France of thick taste, and whipping cream of produced in Hokkaido that you can fully enjoy thick taste of milk with lightly sweetened.
And meringue of inside baked crunchy plays harmony.
It is the taste that you wish to eat another again when you finished eating one.
Desserts menu of the salon is also abundant.
Every dessert of beautifully decorated is what you can enjoy varieties of tastes.
Let’s fully enjoy it together with finely selected black tea.
The retro salon space on the second floor where you can feel Taisho era roman.
It is the calm space like where you can fully enjoy desserts carefully one bite and another, isn’t it?
Address: 1-6-20 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: [Mon to Fri] 11:30AM to 10PM (Last order at 9:30PM), [Sat] 11AM to 10:30PM (Last order at 10PM), [Sun/holiday] 11AM to 9:30PM (Last order at 9PM)
Holiday: No scheduled holiday
Average budget: during day: from 1,000 Yen to 1,999 Yen, at night: 999 Yen
Arabiya Coffee(Coffee shop)
Coffee shop “Arabiya Coffee” that has been loved by stage actors, actresses and back stage staffs for more than 60 years.
There are many fans to the taste that the owner keeps for long time, and it is the mild taste that you will not get bored even if you drink no matter how many cups.
The atmosphere as if you traveled back in time to the Showa period is also wonderful, so it is the shop where you wish to taste carefully and slowly the coffee, while reading some books.
The cafe serves you the well selected coffee in a cup that is somehow cute with illustration of an uncle rolled up with a turban.
A small milk cup is nostalgic.
Very soft and fluffy “French toast” is also popular.
It will be served cut so that you can easily eat them. Because it is filling, it may also be good to eat sharing with your friends.
Retro atmosphere of very long counter seats is cool.
Chairs of antique feeling and a hook for hanging bags have also presence.
There are also table seats of about 40 seats.
Address: 1-6-7 Namba, Chuo-Ward, Osaka-City, Osaka Prefecture
Business hours: 10AM to 7PM
Holiday: Wednesdays, no scheduled holiday
Average budget: during day: up to 999 Yen, at night: from 1,000 Yen to 1,999 Yen
“Hozenji Yokocho” was said that it was begun during the Edo Period, when there stood tea shops and stalls in the temple site for getting worshipers who go to Hozenji Temple, and visitors who proceed to nearby a small theater.
In such Hozenji Yokocho, there are many famous restaurants that you can feel humanity of Osaka.
Wide in genre, every dish is so attractive that makes you feel wishing to do bar hopping.
Why don’t you try spending your gourmet time at Yokocho street of sentiments?