For just about ￥1000-2000 (or more, if you really want to splurge), you can lunch in style with a view overlooking all of downtown Utsunomiya. Jyugoya (十五家） is located on the 15th floor of the Tochigi prefectural office building; while the floor is open to the public most days and nights, and you’re free to bring your own lunch, it’s worth popping into Jyugoya every now and then for some traditional Japanese fare.
Most of their menu is in reduced kaiseki style, meaning you get a lot of little plates and bowls of different things (and it’s really hard to keep track of everything). Even though I didn’t always know what I was eating (kaiseki usually manages to stick in some obscure mountain vegetables), very rarely have I ever felt like complaining about the food. Of course with this style, there will usually be dishes that you love and some you don’t care for, but that’s the beauty of trying a little of a lot!
Depending on your meal, it could come with sashimi, grilled fish, tempura udon, dango, orange-simmered sweet potato, wakame, salad, dessert; or about a billion other options that I can’t list here. Luckily, their website menu is very accessible, even if you aren’t confident in your Japanese, because each set has a picture with it, so I suggest you check there so I can stop rambling semi-incoherently.
This place is perfect for a chill afternoon with friends, romantic dinner date, or if you have friends or family visiting from abroad. It’s a cool view (especially at night or on a very clear day) and an affordable survey of very traditional Japanese cuisine.
〒320-0027 栃木県宇都宮市塙田1丁目1-20 (15th floor of the Tochigi Prefectural Office / Kencho)
Open all week, but closed whenever the office closes (listed on their website)
Hours: Lunch (11-2), Cafe (2-4:30), Dinner (5-9)