An All-American Bite at Tokyo’s JS Burgers Cafe
By Lisa Hong
Don’t get me wrong. I love all things Japanese food with a passion. One of the main reasons I moved to Japan was to have its culinary delights at arm’s reach. Every meal, drink, dessert ecstatically triggers a loud cry of “Ooishi!”
Then, I got pregnant. Suddenly, my body and appetite were rejecting flavors I used to love. Soy sauce, Matcha, red bean, fish, Miso, Ponzu, Yuzu, Ramen, and even Gyudon. My unborn child was clamoring for a burger – an American burger.
I first tried to satiate my craving at a few Japanese chains, but to my dismay, I was attacked with unexpected sweet soy-based sauces and a burger patty that didn’t taste “all-beef” – my body rejected these efforts with all-out nausea.
Sure, I could have fallen back on the American chains and gotten what I needed, but I would feel guilty, like I was cheating on Japan.
I complained to one of my Japanese friends about this dilemma, and since he had lived in California, he knew exactly what I was desiring. He took me to JS Burgers Cafe.
JS stands for Journal Standard, a popular clothing brand in Japan. Attached to some of their stores are cafes and restaurants, one of which is JS Burgers Cafe, who promises an All-American taste.
I ordered the classic JS Burger – melted cheddar cheese dripping over avocado, grilled onions, ripe tomatoes, and a thick, oily, all-beef patty. Served with a good amount of light and crispy seasoned french fries. I looked down at my plate and wondered, “Could Japan have done it? Could they have perfected the American burger?” One bite, and my eyes lit up responding “Yes! Yes they did!”
I won’t go into detail about the carnage that followed, but I will mention that I let out a ravenous “Ooooishiii!” With my baby satisfied, I could hold off with healthier Japanese food for a couple of days until that hamburger craving attacked again. If it did, I was better prepared for it.
JS Burgers Cafe helped me in my time of need, and I’m hoping that it will help others, too. Spread the word about this deliciously amazing Japanese burger joint that does it right!
JS Burgers Cafe serves burgers with all-beef patties, bacon, chili, cheese, avocado, eggs, and other toppings. Also offered are fish burgers, vegetarian options, and even gourmet hot dogs (prices start at 920 yen). Desserts are a generous size (540 yen). It is a casual setting (no table service), serving alcohol (680 yen) and coffees (320 yen). Non-smoking indoors.
Shinjuku: 160-0022, 4-1-7 Shinjuku 3F. TEL 03-5367-0185. OPEN 11-22:30, Sat/Sun/Holidays 10:30-21:30.
Shibuya: 150-8377, 15-1 Udagawacho, Parco building Part 1, 1st Floor. TEL 03-6415-2017. OPEN 10-23:00 daily.