Top Five Japanese Restaurants in Phoenix

Categories: Top Lists
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Jamie Peachey
Cherryblossom Noodle Cafe.
When many people think about Japanese food they immediately snap their fingers and say, "Oh! You mean like sushi?" They are not wrong of course, but Japanese culinary traditions stretch far beyond raw fish on rice. Luckily for us the Valley is home to some truly amazing Japanese restaurants serving up izakaya, robata,and bento.
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Michele Laudig
5. Sushi Ken

While this restaurant has "sushi" right in the title, the real draw of Sushi Ken is the fabulous selection of ramen. We have extolled the virtues of their spicy miso ramen in the past and for good reason. Sushi Ken's bowl of tender noodles floats lazily in a complex broth dotted with chopstick tender pieces of roasted pork. The ramen lunch specials are shockingly filling as they come with a California roll and a salad. The fact that they also serve a good mix of traditional Japanese favorites like oyakodon and curry rice does not hurt one bit either.

Bento
4. Fujiya Market

Bento is a fine Japanese lunch tradition. A bento is a lunch composed of several items that are good served hot or cold. Items could include: a rice ball with a salty salmon filling, curry with rice, or spicy nuggets of fried chicken. In Japan you can pop into any of the ubiquitous convenience stores (Starbucks has got nothing on Family Mart) and pick up your own bento lunch. Sadly, American stores continue to serve us sad looking hot dogs and stale nachos. Thankfully we have Fujiya Market's owner Takata Fujita. He's been making these diverse lunches for decades and the rate at which they vanish during the lunch hour is a testament to his skill.

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Michele Laudig
3. Cherryblossom Noodle Cafe

It would be inaccurate to say that this restaurant serves Japanese-Italian fusion cuisine because what they really do is serve Japanese and Italian food. Cherryblossom celebrates all things noodle and strictly non-denominational in the matter. While their non-Japanese food is good it is their ramen that keeps us coming back over and over again. We could talk about how complex their broth is, how perfectly tender their noodles are, but instead we will just say that it is a bowl of noodles that is worthy of this treatment.

Location Info

Roka Akor

7299 N. Scottsdale Road, Paradise Valley, AZ

Category: Restaurant


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14 comments
Ando Muneno
Ando Muneno

Whoa there commentators, you can put down the pitchforks. This was meant to be a non-sushi list.

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vicelord
vicelord

What a joke....

ShinBay, Hana, Yasu, etc. Many places better than Cherry Blossom Noodle Cafe. Jesus where do you guys get your food writers?!

Emmitt Smith
Emmitt Smith

These lists make me wonder if *any* New Times people have actually been to all of the restaurants on the lists, let alone any others that didn't make it.  It seems like a night spent reading reviews, and then...here's a top 5/10/whatever..

Schadenfriend
Schadenfriend

Whoa. Wait a second. I know listicles are arbitrarily ranked opinions just meant to cause a debate so i usually leave them be, but...I have to assume that the exclusion of Hana and Yasu was because they're more sushi-oriented than a Japanese "Restaurant" like Roka Akor or Nobuo.  Because both of those places are fantastic--though I love Sushi Ken from way back (when they were Sushi Ten in Tucson) and Cherryblossom of course (though I'd hardly call it strictly Japanese when they serve Pad Thai, Korean Beef, and Italian pasta), Hana and Yasu are both far better. 

Adamsmandell32678
Adamsmandell32678

How about a teppAn yaki style place? R their any good ones in the valley?

Amatoanima
Amatoanima

No offense to the writer, but I think in order to form an opinion on the best Japanese in the "Valley"...you need a better representation of the entire Valley. Chandler, for example, has some of the best Asian cuisine due to its population centering around Leelee Market. Main and Dobson has a large number of great restaurants due to the Meekong Plaza. Find the ethnic markets, and you will find the better/best cuisine. Shimogamo is pretty fantastic (Check out Yelp honestly...)

StillHungry
StillHungry

No Hana? Best sushi in the Valley!!!!!

Swicho
Swicho

I like Kampai.... Great food

Eric
Eric

Wow, I'm surprised Yasu Sushi Bistro wasn't on the list.

vicelord
vicelord

doesn't sound like you have even been to Shinbay, nor done any research. It's not a sushi restaurant, and being a James Beard nominee this year, it absolutely should be on this list, and its absence nullifies your lists very existence.

Frank
Frank

Joel, ShinBay too "highbrow" for Chow Bella? Mi think so!

Knoops
Knoops

I have to agree..Yasu has some of the freshest seafood around and he has quite the knife stills too!

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