Enjoy Affordable Lunches! 7 Recommended Restaurants in Osaka
A variety of cuisines can be had in the city of Osaka. It's only natural that tourists visiting this food capital would want to have local delicacies for lunch. Of course, they would be even happier to do so at a reasonable price! This article features a selection of 7 lunch spots in Osaka that were picked for their affordability and deliciousness.
Jan 29 2018 (Sep 09 2020)
1. Indian Curry Hankyu Sanbangai Branch (Umeda, Osaka)
Indian Curry is a curry restaurant that's located inside the shopping center, Hankyu Sanbangai, which is directly connected to Umeda Station. It's always packed full with customers silently munching on curry rice and sweating profusely.
The defining trait of this shop's curry is the spiciness. Famous for the extra-hotness of its dishes, Indian Curry wins the overwhelming approval of spicy food enthusiasts. Their curry, prepared using a variety of spices and fruits, at first lets you catch a glimpse of sweetness and umami (Japanese savory taste), and then hits you with the spiciness! Going through this extra-spicy experience is slightly painful, but thrilling! The spontaneous sweating as you eat is another telltale sign of the spiciness.
2. Hokkyokusei Shinsaibashi Branch (Osaka-Namba)
Located in a traditional ikken-ya (Japanese detached house), Hokkyokusei Shinsaibashi Branch is a restaurant that serves traditional yoshoku (Western-influenced Japanese cuisine). Notably, it was the first restaurant in Japan to serve omurice (Japanese omelet with fried rice). Made with fluffy eggs topped with ketchup and served in a simple yet elegant way, this dish combines an inviting appearance with the great taste that’s expected of a renowned shop.
The lunch menu, which includes their staple omurice, is extremely affordable at 1,000 yen or below. The shop itself, built in the distinctive sukiya (a traditional Japanese architectural style) style, is superb both on the outside and inside, such as with their cozy tatami room and their beautiful inner garden. The bright sunlight pouring inside adds to the extraordinarily comfy atmosphere. During weekdays, it's also possible (for a fee) to participate in an omurice cooking session held by professional chefs. It’s definitely an experience to try out!
3. Nabeya (Imafune)
Nabeya is a restaurant specializing in sukiyaki (hot pot stew) that’s located in Nishinari, which is a bit distant from major tourist spots. Nishinari may be known as Osaka's "dark side", but the shop itself feels like a place where you can just relax. The inside is rather spacious, with plenty of tables and seats. “Pot for One” is written on the noren (shop curtains) hanging outside the restaurant, and indeed, you can find some customers eating alone at their table.
Most of their dishes can be eaten for less than 1,000 yen. They have a wide variety of generously-sized hot pot dishes, such as sukiyaki, chiri nabe (hot pot with fish and vegetables), miso nabe (hot pot with a miso broth), kimchi nabe (Korean hot pot with pickled cabbage), and beef tetsunabe (iron hot pot with beef).
4. Sohonke Naniwa Soba (Shinsaibashi)
This long-established soba (buckwheat noodles) restaurant is located inside a traditional Japanese wooden house that screams of history. Sohonke Naniwa Soba is perfect for an affordable, satisfying, and excellent lunch. One of the most popular dishes is the Niku-tsuke Soba (buckwheat noodles with meat), in which the sweet broth creates a superb harmony with the noodles. If you add a raw egg to the second half of your portion, you can experience a different taste!
Another recommended dish is the refreshing Sudachi Soba (buckwheat noodles flavored with Japanese citrus fruit), which comes in two versions: hot or cold. The substantiality of the noodles, prepared with homemade flour, complements the sourness of the citrus slices floating in the broth, creating a perfect mix that stimulates the appetite.
5. Ramen Jinsei JET Fukushima Main Branch (Fukushima)
You will find Ramen Jinsei JET right next to Fukushima Station in Osaka. This place is so popular that it managed to be listed among the 100 most highly rated restaurants by users on review sites, and there is always a line at its doors. Still, their superb ramen is well worth the wait. The highlight of this restaurant is the rich menu, where you can find everything from orthodox shoyu ramen (soup noodles with soy sauce-flavored broth) to the rare curry ramen.
Their Tori Nikomi Soba (chicken stew noodles) is an irresistibly delicious ramen with soup made rich by the umami of the chicken. It's very thick, but so good that you'll end up emptying your bowl. Of course, the char siu (roasted pork) is also excellent!
6. Dotonbori Imai Main Branch (Namba)
Dotonbori Imai – a Japanese-style restaurant that’s located in the liveliest street of Dotonbori – specializes in udon (thick noodles). It boasts of an enviable position that’s not far from the famous tourist spot, Ebisu Bridge (Ebisu-bashi). Inside this calm and peaceful restaurant, there are 4 floors that are open to customers.
Their specialty, Kitsune Udon (thick noodles with deep-fried tofu), is not just delicious, but is also pleasing to the eye. It contains two pieces of deep-fried tofu, along with a helping of green onions to decorate the dish. The deep-fried tofu is thick and filling. The noodles are easy to eat, and carry the flavor of the broth, which uses high-quality ingredients gathered from different places. This is the first stop for lovers of Kansai-style udon!
7. Harukoma (Tenjimbashisuji 6-chome, Tenma)
Harukoma is the perfect place to eat delicious sushi at reasonable prices. The price for one plate with two pieces of sushi starts as cheap as 100 yen. Of course, this is not the kind of restaurant where you go for peace and quiet, but their sushi is really worth it. The ingredients are fresh, and the rice is really fluffy!
Since the restaurant is quite small, it is advised to bring as little luggage as possible. The highlight of this shop is the chance to eat seafood that’s usually expensive, like toro (fatty tuna), uni (sea urchin), and awabi (abalone), at extremely affordable prices. Perhaps that’s the reason why Harukoma is so popular to the point where there’s often a line of customers waiting at their door?
Oskaa is a tourist destination with thousands of restaurants! If you have enough money, you can taste delicacies from every part of the world here. However, there’s still plenty of places in Osaka where you can eat an excellent lunch without spending much. Enjoy luxuries at reasonable prices!
The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.