Family teishoku restaurants are a dime a dozen in Japan. Featuring set menus based upon a bowl of rice served with several side dishes of meats, vegetables and other goodies, teishoku represent some of the best value casual dining experiences in the country.
Part of the Skylark restaurant chain, Yumean has stores all over the country with heavy representation in Tokyo, Chiba, Kanagawa and Saitama prefectures. Our visit was to the local restaurant in Yashio City, a small municipality in Saitama close to Tokyo.
Our first visit there saw us try the buffet shabu-shabu Kiso course complete with all-you-can-eat serves of either pork or beef. At a measly JPY 2900, it was certainly value for money. The dipping pots contained two flavours, one a spicy kimchi and the other a more traditional dashi stock flavour. Both were yum.
Later, we came back to try the Winter Seafood Rice Bowl. With a choice of either crab or ikura salmon roe as topping, I chose the ikura and, along with the tempura and the dollop of uni sea urchin that came with it, was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the meal. At only JPY 1599, Yumean again showed that teishoku restaurants are hard to beat when it comes to value.
Drink bars at Yumean are also available and so too is a nice selection of ala carte dishes. With the sets that we ordered, deserts were limited but on one visit I chose the chocolate-on-chocolate cake (to give to my kids...) and the anmitsu agar jelly on another visit.
Take out orders are available at Yumean while the store itself opens everyday from 1030 am - 100 am. A simple, but modern ambience, along with some casually traditional Japanese meals and extremely reasonable pricing makes Yumean one of the more pleasant family teishoku experiences in Japan.