Whether you’re a homesick Aussie craving an Aussie brunch, or you just want a nice meal, it’s hard to go past bills. The restaurant is run by Bill Granger, an internationally renowned Australian chef, who is particularly well known for his brunches. bills philosophy is simple food using the freshest ingredients.
bills in Shichirigahama, which opened in 2008, was his first restaurant outside of Australia. There are now three others in Japan (Yokohama, Odaiba and the most recent addition, Omotesando). Shichirigahama is a beach side town located close to Kamakura, and the restaurant overlooks the ocean. Unfortunately it was ridiculously windy on the day of our visit, we couldn’t fully appreciate the location, although I'm sure the surfers we could see out in the ocean were loving the wind!
As with many places these days, bills doesn’t take bookings (other than for dinner). Instead, when you arrive at the restaurant the staff will add your name to the waiting list. When we arrived at 10:00 we were told we couldn’t get a table until 12:45; however, we were free to leave once our name was on the waiting list, and we filled in the time in nearby Kamakura. When we returned at 12:45 for our table, people were already being turned away as there was no availability left for the day. So my tip would definitely be to get there early!
The menu is bilingual (English on one side and Japanese on the other). There is a separate breakfast, lunch and dinner menu, but the three ‘bills classics’ are available all day. These are the ricotta hotcakes with fresh banana and honeycomb butter, the full Aussie breakfast, and sweet corn fritters with roast tomato, spinach and bacon.
The lunch menu, which starts at midday, has a good selection of delicious sounding pasta dishes, soups, sandwiches, salads and mains, in addition to the classics. The four of us decided to share the Aussie breakfast, the prawn and chili linguine and finish with two serves of the hotcakes.
All the dishes were perfectly cooked and deliciously satisfying, and we found this to be the perfect quantity for the four of us. The prices were surprisingly good too—the total bill (without drinks) came to just over 6,000 yen. On the topic of drinks, the menu features a good selection of Australian wines, although I didn’t see any Australia beers (only Japanese beers).
I definitely felt as though I could have been eating brunch back in Australia and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. It was definitely worth the almost 3 hour wait!