Loving Hut (Jimbocho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo) – ★★★

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Quick Check:

  • Quality:  ★★★ – Good
  • Type: All Vegan – Chinese, Taiwanese, Japanese, International; Dine-in and Take-out
  • Location: Between Jimbocho Station & JR Suidobashi Station
  • Hours:
    • Lunch: Mon-Fri, 11:30-17:00
    • Buffet: Fri, 17:30-21:00 (Last Order 20:30), ¥2000; Sat: 11:30-15:30 (Last Order 15:00), ¥1500
    • Closed: Sunday, Holidays. Sometimes closed on Fridays, Saturdays for event catering.
  • Price: $ – Cheap (about ¥1000 for an entree)
  • Language Barrier: English-language menu, some English-speaking staff
  • Website: HappyCow PageRestaurant Website

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Location & Map:

Address, Train Access & Contact:

  • English Address: Okada Bldg 2F, 1-54, Kandajinbocho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 101-0051
  • Japanese Address: 〒101-0051 東京都千代田区神田神保町1-54岡田ビル2F
  • Train Access: 5 minute walk from Jimbocho Station, Exit 5; 10 minute walk from JR Suidobashi Station
  • Phone Number: 03-5577-6880

Google Map:

Restaurant Review:

Loving Hut is an international chain of vegan restaurants run by Chiang Hai, a Vietnamese spiritual leader.  It’s the largest chain of vegan restaurants in the worlds, and while the ever-present videos of the Supreme Master and her followers can be a little distracting and off-putting to new visitors, the food at Loving Huts seems to be pretty consistently delicious and inventive.  The Tokyo location is no exception:  they offer a small but delicious selection of Taiwanese/Chinese, Japanese and international dishes for very reasonable prices, as well as a more expensive weekly buffet.  They also have lunch boxes and steam buns for take-out, which is great for tourists on-the-go.

Several years ago, I visited their old location and tried the Vegan Kabayaki, a sort of mock grilled unagi eel-over-rice dish.  While it’s probably the only place you’ll find a vegan version of something so unique, I didn’t find it that appealing.  That said, I’ve never had actual eel, but I can imagine I would like it much either, so I won’t use that as a point against them.  That’s what I get from trying something new!

The second time I went, I ordered the Dim Sum Lunch Set for ¥1000 (pretty cheap by Tokyo’s vegan cafe standards).  The Dim Sum Set includes the Taiwanese Delicatessen Plate, and your choice of one of 4 steam-bun dumpling sets. Lunch Sets are only served during the lunch hour, from 11:30 -14:00.

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Dim Sum Lunch Set B (¥1,000)

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Delicatessen Plate 

The delicatessen plate included Radish Rice Cake, a mock omelette square, a faux meat skewer, summer rolls, a spicy “shrimp” salad, and a noodle salad.  Each items was beautifully prepared. and tasted delicious.  While there are other vegan Taiwanese places in Tokyo, the deli plate is a wonderful chance to sample a number of different Taiwanese dishes.

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Delicatessen Plate

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Pickles

I ordered Dim Sum Set B, which included 1 Vegetable Bun, 1 Black Vinegar Veg Pork Bun, and 2 pieces of Shumai dumplings. The Deli Plate was really good, but the steam buns and shumai were the highlight of the meal – they were fluffy, chewy, and incredibly flavorful.  The Black Vinegar Veg Pork Bun was my personal favorite – I could have eaten them for lunch every day. It also came with Douhua, a delicious tofu pudding.  In addition, I ordered Taiwanese Tea – I’m not sure exactly what type of tea it was, but it was delicious.

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Mantou Dumplings Set B – Black Vinegar & Veg-Pork Dumpling, Vegetable Dumpling, Steamed Chinese Dumpling

Vegetable Bun

Vegetable Bun

Black Vinegar Pork Bun

Black Vinegar Pork Bun

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Mango Douhua (Taiwanese Tofu Pudding)

The decor was kind of boring and unstylish, and like all Loving Huts they had songs from the Supreme Master and her followers playing (I think there was  TV playing them, but I can’t remember).  I personally find this distracting and a little strange, since I’m not a follower.  But hey, it’s their restaurant and they serve some damn good food, so I can’t complain too much.  The staff were incredibly friendly (as always), and my waitress spoke English!  I of course can’t guarantee that  all servers do, but if you’re nervous about ordering in Japanese they may be able to help.

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Overall, I definitely recommend visiting this Loving Hut location.  It has some delicious food for really reasonable prices, and with it’s central location and take-out dishes, it’s ideal for visiting tourists.

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