Travel notes, reviews and useful tips

The Vietnam Frog in Shimbashi

D o you sometimes crave a certain kind of food? In particular, food from another country that you can’t find in the local supermarket. Or maybe you can find the ingredients but can’t (or refuse to) cook the dish yourself.

Pho from a local cantina in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Pho from a local cantina in Hanoi, Vietnam.

This is what it’s like for me as a fan of Vietnamese cuisine. I was in Vietnam in September this year and there I made sure to eat as much pho (Vietnamese rice noodles) as I could. I love the use of vegetables and fresh herbs in this neighboring country’s healthy fare. In Japan, I don’t get to eat pho on a daily basis, but the local supermarket does carry a type of goi cuon (fresh spring rolls or Vietnamese salad rolls, called namaharumaki in Japan). I sometimes buy some for dinner, and it’s always a treat.

Exterior of Vietnamese restaurant "Vietnam Frog" in Shimbashi

Exterior of Vietnamese restaurant "Vietnam Frog" in Shimbashi

I was in Shimbashi in Tokyo the other day and when in Shimbashi…there’s a Vietnamese restaurant in the area! It’s called Vietnam Frog, and the food here is both delicious and affordable.

Lunch set with rice noodles and fresh spring roll.

Lunch set with rice noodles and fresh spring roll.

I go there whenever I am anywhere nearby. I usually eat the goi cuon lunch set (JPY 950). You get a bowl of rice noodles and a fresh spring roll, with two kinds of dip.

The "open cafe" and "box seating" areas. Not shown are the main & private dining areas.

The "open cafe" and "box seating" areas. Not shown are the main & private dining areas.

If you’re up for a bit of luxury lunch there’s the Hanoi lunch set (JPY 1,380), consisting of rice noodles, rolls, and dessert with Vietnamese coffee. There’s also a buffet lunch offering for those who are really hungry.

Interior details of the Vietnam Frog restaurant.

Interior details of the Vietnam Frog restaurant.

The restaurant has a nice, Southeast Asian look, with wooden carvings as dividers. There are bamboo accents and limestone sculptures for decoration.

Getting There

Vietnam Frog is on the first basement level (B1F) of the Shiodome City Center building. See link below for detailed directions.

I Would Love to Hear Your Thoughts

Do you have a favorite Vietnamese or other Southeast Asian restaurant where you live? Do share in the comments section below. I would love to hear from you!

Books to Consider

External Links

Gurunabi – page for Vietnam Frog. There are coupons available so make sure to check in case there’s something you’d like to use.
Shiodome City Center – details on how to get there.

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  1. Kristine /

    Vietnamese food, yum!! It’s too bad when I went to Saigon for a few days all the eating places we went to only had fried spring rolls. I wanted fresh ones.

    Why are there hangers behind the two seats in the fourth picture?

    • Hi Kristine! The fried spring rolls are the equivalent of lumpia in the Philippines, don’t you think? Fresh spring rolls is a popular Vietnamese cuisine here in Japan, but it’s not cheap! I wish I could eat them everyday. 🙂

      Shimbashi is an office area in Tokyo. Most of the restaurant-goers are salaried office workers, who usually wear suits to work. The restaurants here have limited space (no cloakroom), so they put hangers in “box seats” so that the customer can hang his or her jacket or coat. I use them myself sometimes. 🙂

      • Kristine /

        I guess. But lumpiang togue is around twice or three times as big as the fried spring rolls I tried in Saigon. Fresh spring rolls also have an equivalent: lumpiang ubod or lumpiang sariwa. I like the Viet versions better for some reason.

  2. Comments from Google Plus:

    michelle wrote:

    “it is always so beautifully presented as well, even in the cheap food courts. I just don’t have the patience to slice things so beautifully thin :os”

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