Tamura Ginkatsu-tei – Gora, Hakone, Japan – a traditional looking restaurant serving some elegant, modern looking katsu and tofu dishes

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For most foreigners, Gora, Hakone is off the beaten track so it is usually visited by domestic Japanese travelers or those travelers with some experience. Aside from the gorgeous scenery from manicured gardens, tranquil rivers and majestic looking hills and mountains (including the most famous, Mount Fuji), you can take part enjoying delicious food at some hidden gems.

We visited Tamura Ginkatsu-tei because of the stellar reviews on TripAdvisor. Getting to restaurant wasn’t too far from Gora Station. It look about 10 minutes tops. We managed to get seats without reservation, but I suspect a restaurant like this gets busy around the lunch and dinner periods. For reference, we came during the period between lunch and dinner.

We were warmly greeted into the restaurant, which has a traditional Japanese architecture inside and out. Most of the interior is traditional wooden furniture. On being seated, they happily accommodated us with an English menu and provided some starter dishes (of pickled Japanese vegetables), water and a wet wipe.

The entrance to Tamura Ginkatsu-tei is filled with beautiful plants and rocks

Tofu Katsuni is their top recommendation, which is minced pork with onions sandwiched between specially ordered tofu from Gintofu, Gora’s famed tofu shop, that has been crumbed and deep-fried then it is topped with an eg. Many people at other tables ordered this dish. This dish is 1,330 yen wish rice, miso soup and Japanese pickles.

The English menu at Tamura Ginkatsu-tei

I went for the Pork Fillet Cutlet katsudon which came with pork deep-fried and crumbed and topped with egg for 1,540 yen. This dish also came with miso soup on the side. The dish was exquisite. The breading was crispy, perfectly layered, and allowed the meat to remain tender and succulent. It was such an enjoyable dish that I still dream of wanting to come back.

The katsudon at Tamura Ginkatsu-tei

The prices were so reasonable as well. I can see no reason why you wouldn’t add such a beautiful restaurant with excellent food to your itinerary. By the time we were leaving, we couldn’t resist picking up some katsu-sando for 800 yen for a late night snack.

If you are in Gora, I feel this restaurant is a must try. If you are in Gora, my tip is to stick to the paths. Due to the hills being so steep, at one point I lost my footing, fell on my bum and ripped my pants. It was embarrassing as it really did a number of my cotton pants. Oh well, you live and you learn (and you share).

Tamura Ginkatsu-tei is located at 1300-739 Gora, Hakone, As1300-739 Gora, Hakone, Ashigarashimo District, Kanagawa 250-0408, Japan

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