Experience a tour of some of Japan’s best cuisine without even setting foot outside of your hotel with these top 10 breakfast buffet picks.
Breakfast, as we know, is the most important meal of the day, and for many Japanese, these all-you-can-eat morning feasts are one of the best perks of staying at a nice hotel.
We’re not saying you should necessarily choose your hotel based on the breakfast menu while traveling through Japan, but if you were so inclined, here are this year’s top 10 hotel breakfast picks, according to the Japanese tourist reviews that make up TripAdvisor’s Itte Yokatta! Choshoku no Oishii Hotel Ranking 2016 (You’ll be Glad You Went! Delicious Breakfast Hotel Ranking 2016). You can see how the list compares to last year’s here.
One newcomer was the Toyama Manten Hotel at number six, favored for its salted squid marinated in squid ink and trout. It’ll be interesting to see if it can maintain its ranking or move up next year, considering how fierce the competition is!
According to reviewers, the best three picks are almost like a personal gourmet taste tour of each area’s specialties, while Hokkaido, the country’s northernmost island, easily outnumbered other parts of Japan when it came to breakfast, filling up more than half of the names on the list. Not only is the island well-known for its fresh dairy farms, its range of high-quality seafood makes it a hard to beat when it comes to fine Japanese cuisine. But enough rambling; let’s get to the food!
10. Century Royal Hotel (Sapporo, Hokkaido)
This hotel’s morning buffet is designed to bring out the best flavors of vegetables and brown rice, while offering a taste of Hokkaido’s four seasons.
9. Shiroyama Kanko Hotel (Kagoshima, Kagoshima Prefecture)
Enjoy a breathtaking view of Sakurajima over this delicious breakfast, prepared with ingredients locally grown in Kagoshima.
8. Sapporo Grand Hotel (Sapporo, Hokkaido)
This breakfast buffet offers a sampling of grilled items from the dinner menu, along with the hotel’s “special curry” and the chef’s speciality, hamajiru (fisherman’s soup). There are also many Western-style options.
7. Dormy Inn Premium Otaru (Otaru, Hokkaido)
Otaru is famous for sushi, and although the fish market is close by, the Dormy Inn Premium definitely holds its own during breakfast with chirashi sushi and other seafood favorites. There’s ramen and more Western-style options like pancakes, too. Even better, it’s really affordable!
6. Toyama Manten Hotel (Toyama, Toyama Prefecture)
Just like its name suggests, the Toyama Manten (Full Mark) Hotel gets a perfect score for variety and value with its scrumptious breakfast buffet, priced at just 1,050 yen (just under US$10).
5. Hotel Keihan Sapporo (Sapporo, Hokkaido)
Hokkaido’s best ingredients are incorporated each day to prepare this hotel’s morning buffet.
4. Hakodate Kokusai Hotel (Hakodate, Hokkaido)
The Hakodate Kokusai Hotel’s buffet has enough options to for both Japanese and Western cuisine fans to walk away from the table stuffed and happy.
3. Hotel Rocore Naha (Naha, Okinawa)
This is your best bet for sampling a wide range of Okinawan cuisine in one meal.
2. La Vista Hakodate Bay (Hakodate, Hokkaido)
The real draw here is the hotel’s katte-don (Have-It-Your-Way Bowl), where pescatarians and fish-lovers alike can create their own rice bowl from a variety of seafood favorites like ikura (salmon roe) and amaebi (sweet shrimp).
1. Hotel Piena Kobe (Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture)
Considered one of Japan’s most stylish cities, Kobe attracts a large number of foreign and domestic tourists every year. Japanese beef might be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the city, but the Hotel Piena’s breakfast, which has claimed the number one spot on the list for four years straight, is just one more reason to visit. In addition to a wide array of Japanese and Western dishes, it even has a full dessert bar.
Everything from this buffet’s carefully selected local ingredients to its atmosphere and warm staff make for an experience that diners say is better than they could have ever imagined.
You may be a little late for Golden Week, but if you’re thinking about how to get the most out of your summer holidays, why not give one of these hotels and cities a try? Hokkaido would probably be your best option when it comes to sampling the largest variety of breakfast in a short amount of time, and it’s cool during Japan’s most humid months to boot!
Source: Trip Advisor press release
Top image: Trip Advisor Gallery
Insert images: Trip Advisor Gallery, Hotel Piena Kobe, Century Royal Hotel, Shiroyama Kanko Hotel, Sapporo Grand Hotel
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