[Nara, Japan] Tonkatsu Ganko Restaurant (とんかつがんこ 奈良店) at Higashimuki

Tonkatsu Ganko Restaurant (とんかつがんこ 奈良店) at the busy Higashimuki Shopping Street is a convenient lunch-stop before/after a visit to the popular, deer-populated Nara Park.

Tonkatsu Ganko is located nearer the entrance of Kintetsu Nara JR station, where there’s a small square with a water-fountain and a statue of Gyōki. It’s known as “Gyōki-hiroba” and is popular with local people as a meeting point.

Tonkatsu Ganko’s freshly-prepared tonkatsu are served in reasonably-priced sets, averaging around JPY1,200 per head, with free refills of iced tea, steamed rice, and crunchy, shredded cabbage. Grind yourself “goma” (sesame seeds) and various sauces/dressing are provided. A mixed set comes with pork-loin katsu, a shrimp and a pair of oysters.

Tonkatsu Ganko Restaurant (とんかつがんこ 奈良店)
19 Higashimukinaka-machi,
Nara, Japan
(〒630-8215 奈良県奈良市 東向中町19)
Tel: +81 742-25-4129
Operating hours: 11am-10pm, daily


Are you stopping in Kyoto?

If so, looking forward to your report.

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Yes, spending 8 days in Kyoto. But still in Nara this weekend.

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Last time when I was in Nara and Kyoto, I was 20 and was still at school. We saved up the money for travelling but not for food (we ate mostly cantine or store bought stuff). But I still remembered having a lot fun feeding the pigeons in the Nara Park and the beautiful temples in Kyoto. I vaguely remembered the delicious street food in Osaka.

Looking forward for your Nara and Kyoto adventures!


This is also my first trip back to Japan in many years. I used to visit Tokyo a lot - on business, sometimes up to 4-5 times in a year, but that’s in the last decade. I’m trying to get back into the mood for some serious food-hunting this time, but am still struggling a bit - it’s been too long. :smiley:


I walked through that shopping “street” every day to get to anywhere. I remember having a nice meal of mostly tofu. Japan has the most exquisite tofu. How do they do that?

Had a pretty meal at this small restaurant in Kyoto. Traditional Kyoto style pressed sushi with pickled mackerel. Restaurant name is Izuju. There’s always always a queue. Write your name in the notebook by the entrance and they call you when the table is ready.


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I love Kyoto-style pickled fish. It was said that Japanese sashimi/sushi has its origins in the fermented fish of the Khmers/Annamese - brought northwards through China. Rice was used as a fermenting agent on the fish, and the fermented rice by-product was subsequently consumed. Modern preparation of sushi rice did away with the lengthy fermentation process by merely flavouring the rice with vinegar and mirin.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold

Market stall in Lima
Credit: TXMX 2