japanese food train station bento ekiben

3 Simple Ways to Discover Japan’s Unique Food Culture

Please excuse the hyperventilating tone of this piece, but I get pretty excited when writing about food in Japan. The Japanese have transformed their konbini (convenience stores), ekiben (train station bento) and depachika (department store basement food halls) like nowhere else in the world. Five trips in, and I’m still hungry for more. Here’s the story published on GaijinPot.com.

ekiben japanese train station bento from matsumoto nagoya
Two-tiered train station bento box from Matsumoto Station, Nagoya prefecture.

ekiben train station bento from matsumoto nagoya japan
Inside: 14 little dishes made from local ingredients and prepared by local businesses.

japanese food train station ekiben bento
Gorgeous ekiben artwork, Matsumoto Station

hello kitty ekiben train station bento japan
Special Hello Kitty-themed ekiben

Crab ekiben train station bento from Hokkaido
Ekiben from Hokkaido: crab, salmon roe and shredded omelette on rice

Hankyu department store Osaka basement food hall depachika
My favorite department store food hall so far is in Hankyu in Umeda, Osaka

desserts at hankyu department store depachika umeda Osaka
Apple tarts shaped into roses. Just one of the many elegant treats in Hankyu’s basement food hall.

Check out the new story here…


Let’s Eat! 5 Scary Japanese Foods and Why You Should Try Them

Mogu Mogu! Japanese Sweets by Sound

An Insider Guide to the Best Food and Coffee in Kichijoji, Tokyo

Kyoto’s Nishiki Market – A Food Emporium Fit for Royalty

2 thoughts on “3 Simple Ways to Discover Japan’s Unique Food Culture

    1. Thanks and is there any thing in particular you recommend from Lawson because I’ll look out for it next trip. I’m also going to check out Mini-stop because a local told me they’re a bit more “gourmet”,


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