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Meghan McCarron

Where to Eat In Paris’s Little Tokyo

Explore the ramen, sushi, udon and more tucked away in a neighborhood near the Louvre

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Not far from the Louvre, near the Palais Royal, lies Rue Sainte-Anne, the heart of Paris's Little Tokyo. This is where the city's estimated 31,000 Japanese expats come for a taste of home, thanks to myriad eateries, bakeries, and grocery stores specializing in udon, soba, ramen, sushi, okonomiyaki, and more. Whether you're searching for a quick, affordable meal or a Japanese feast to break up all the foie, this hidden-in-plain-sight neighborhood is worth a visit.

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Udon Bistro Kunitoraya

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Kunitoraya serves the best udon in Paris—all noodles are handmade on site—meaning this tiny shop is, unsurprisingly, always packed. Try the kamo udon, served with duck in a flavorful, piping-hot broth; the ten-zaru udon, which comes with giant shrimp tempura and a tasty dipping sauce; or the katsudon, which features a breaded and fried pork cutlet over rice topped with egg and a savory-sweet sauce made from dashi, mirin, soy sauce, and sake.

Deana Saukam

Happa Teï

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Okonomiyaki and takoyaki are the focus at Happa Teï, and you’ll know you’ve arrived when you spy chefs flipping octopus-filled dough through the window. Regardless of whether you order your Japanese pancakes stuffed with cabbage, pork, shrimp, squid, yakisoba, potatoes, or mochi, you should always top them with an egg and a slice of cheese. Don’t be intimidated by the crowds: there’s additional seating upstairs, so your chances of snagging a table are better than they might first seem.

Deana Saukam

Chez Miki

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Chez Miki is a lively Japanese bistro with only 16 seats, so be prepared to wait. The menu focuses on yoshoku, or Western-style Japanese dishes, a type of Japanese cuisine that is largely unknown to foreigners but has a storied history in Japan (it originated in the mid-19th century, a byproduct of the Meiji Restoration). Top picks include foie gras nigiri, creamy sea urchin spaghetti with mentaiko (marinated cod roe) and natto (fermented soybean), and grilled dried skate. The restaurant’s wine and sake list is stellar, too.

Deana Saukam

Kotteri Ramen Naritake

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Kotteri Ramen Naritake is a Parisian institution, with lines regularly stretching out the door and down the block. The broths, both shoyu and miso, are pork-based and come with the standard add-ons of butter, corn, egg, spicy green onion, and chashu pork. Diners can choose just how fatty they’d like their pork backfat to be, from “Lots of fat” (Gita Gita) down to “A little bit of fat” (Sappari).” Don’t forget to order a plate of crispy, juicy pork-and-scallion gyoza too.

Guilhem Vellut/Flickr

A no-frills Japanese eatery that covers all the casual classics: okonomiyaki, udon, donburi, karaage, Japanese curry, and more. The affordable lunch menu offers mix-and-match combinations of multiple dishes, perfect when you want to try a little bit of everything. And the long counter overlooking the open kitchen is a solo diner’s best friend.

Deana Saukam

Udon Bistro Kunitoraya

Kunitoraya serves the best udon in Paris—all noodles are handmade on site—meaning this tiny shop is, unsurprisingly, always packed. Try the kamo udon, served with duck in a flavorful, piping-hot broth; the ten-zaru udon, which comes with giant shrimp tempura and a tasty dipping sauce; or the katsudon, which features a breaded and fried pork cutlet over rice topped with egg and a savory-sweet sauce made from dashi, mirin, soy sauce, and sake.

Deana Saukam

Happa Teï

Okonomiyaki and takoyaki are the focus at Happa Teï, and you’ll know you’ve arrived when you spy chefs flipping octopus-filled dough through the window. Regardless of whether you order your Japanese pancakes stuffed with cabbage, pork, shrimp, squid, yakisoba, potatoes, or mochi, you should always top them with an egg and a slice of cheese. Don’t be intimidated by the crowds: there’s additional seating upstairs, so your chances of snagging a table are better than they might first seem.

Deana Saukam

Chez Miki

Chez Miki is a lively Japanese bistro with only 16 seats, so be prepared to wait. The menu focuses on yoshoku, or Western-style Japanese dishes, a type of Japanese cuisine that is largely unknown to foreigners but has a storied history in Japan (it originated in the mid-19th century, a byproduct of the Meiji Restoration). Top picks include foie gras nigiri, creamy sea urchin spaghetti with mentaiko (marinated cod roe) and natto (fermented soybean), and grilled dried skate. The restaurant’s wine and sake list is stellar, too.

Deana Saukam

Kotteri Ramen Naritake

Kotteri Ramen Naritake is a Parisian institution, with lines regularly stretching out the door and down the block. The broths, both shoyu and miso, are pork-based and come with the standard add-ons of butter, corn, egg, spicy green onion, and chashu pork. Diners can choose just how fatty they’d like their pork backfat to be, from “Lots of fat” (Gita Gita) down to “A little bit of fat” (Sappari).” Don’t forget to order a plate of crispy, juicy pork-and-scallion gyoza too.

Guilhem Vellut/Flickr

Aki

A no-frills Japanese eatery that covers all the casual classics: okonomiyaki, udon, donburi, karaage, Japanese curry, and more. The affordable lunch menu offers mix-and-match combinations of multiple dishes, perfect when you want to try a little bit of everything. And the long counter overlooking the open kitchen is a solo diner’s best friend.

Deana Saukam

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