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“Excellent food in a somewhat hidden place”

Kamakuramatsubaraan
Ranked #9 of 1,468 Restaurants in Kamakura
Price range: US$27 - US$45
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic, Groups
Dining options: Reservations
Redwood City, California
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Excellent food in a somewhat hidden place”
Reviewed 17 August 2014

We went to Kamakura for the tipical visit to temples and shrines, but as always, we looked in tripadvisor for the best places to eat. We skipped the hamburgers (of the top ranked Good Mellows) and tried this place that looked more local and traditional. To get there you need to take the train that goes from Kamakura station to the great Buda temple, but step out in one of the stations in between. Then you walk three or four blocks towards the sea and make a left (we asked someone, but you can use your google maps to get there). My point is that it is not in the more touristic area or so easy to find, but it is really worth the effort. The interesting thing about this restaurant is that they provide fixed menus, as in nouvelle couisine meeting Japanese food. The first set of curses were the best: a variety of small appetizers, all good and a couple of them spectacular. Excellent sake. Reasonable price. You can seat either in or outdoors.

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Sandra K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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87 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    38
    31
    14
    2
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Windermere, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
146 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 135 helpful votes
“best meal i had in japan, hands down”
Reviewed 17 February 2014

in a food-obsession country like japan, where you'd have to try really hard to find a bad meal, this was my favorite food experience of the trip, without question.

i met up with an old friend from yokohama while in kamakura and she took us to matsubara-an, based on her friend's recommendation who had dined there before.

let me just say, had we not gone with her, we never would have found this place on our own. she used google walking instructions, and perhaps if you were coming straight from the train station it would be easier, but this restaurant is located on a very residential street and if you don't read japanese, from the outside it could be confusing that it is even a restaurant and instead just someone's home decor.

once inside, there is a small stand to check in and benches where you are expected to sit and remove your shoes, since it is tatami. the place was very crowded, even though it was already rather late for lunch, but fortunately we got a table within a few minutes.

seating was traditional, as in you sit on the floor, and the restaurant is divided into a number of rooms. the interiors are stunning, yet minimalist, which mirror the style of cooking. we all had the set meal for lunch, two of us the "basic" option with hot soba, and my husband had the more elaborate meal with hot soba as well. since it was january and chilly, none of us were interested in the cold soba, but it is an option. they did offer us a translated menu in english, although some of the dishes that were part of the set menu were not in english. luckily for us, we were dining with someone who could translate, but even if you had no idea what you were about to eat when ordering, you would know upon first bite that it tastes delicious and that's all that matters.

from start to finish, the meal was perfection. while it isn't cheap (about $30 for the cheaper of the set lunches), the artistry, quality of the ingredients, attentive service and soothing interiors make it an amazing value and more than justify the cost, which would probably be more than $200 for a comparable experience offered in new york or london. also, it was a lot of food, something i wasn't expecting upon arrival.

the outdoor garden offered seating too (along with the necessary heat lamps in january), which looked like a lot of fun if this wasn't your first time at the restaurant.

make it a point to find this gem while in kamakura. i dream of the day i can return!

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank amyh12382
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California, United States
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Excellent Soba & Tempura”
Reviewed 18 October 2013

This place is an awesome dinner spot in Kamakura. Very intimate and romantic setting. A local friend of ours said it is the best soba he's ever had, and I would agree. We ordered the cold tofu, 3 sashimi appetizer, hot soba and seafood + vegetable tempura. It was excellent. Not to mention the service was great, our waiter barely spoke any english, but he was full of recommendations on what to order for food and sake. They have an awesome sake selection too!

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Matthew T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
104 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
“A relaxing and lovely afternoon lunch”
Reviewed 23 August 2013

This place was recommended by a friend and a local to the area. It was a lovely former residence, tucked away from the main road. We had a nice private room upstairs, as we were a large group of 12, and had made a booking for a large room from weeks before. The restaurant was full, and seemed quite popular. There were some people waiting outdoors, but not a long queue. I would recommend making a booking before hand.

We had chosen the lunch set which was quite filling and reasonably priced. It came with a beautiful dish of bite size starters, tempura and hot or cold soba with a fresh dessert. The staff there that day didn't speak any English, but happily explained in detail in Japanese to me, whilst I translated to the others. The food was prompt, fresh, light and very tasty. The staff were happy to do a small special birthday dessert dish with a candle for our friend as well, which was very nice.

It was a perfect afternoon, in a relaxing environment with authentic Japanese soba cuisine.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank motraveling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
spore
Level 4 Contributor
22 reviews
14 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Normal food taste”
Reviewed 18 June 2013

I visit this restaurant purely based on rave review. Seriously , being in Tokyo,kawasaki, yokohama ,kamkura for a week trying out various high ,mid, cheap restaurant , this got to be my lowest rating in terms of taste n value.
Yes, there's a lot of tourist, simply becos is Michelin rated? Yes they have English menu, but is it the most outstanding? Ambience is definitely Michelin in kamakura .foodwise errrrr....
To be fair, those who can have spare time to visit this restaurant , go for it, but try at least 5 or 6 restaurant , then made your own judgement.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank musiccontempo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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