“This is the Very Steak, the Big Cut of Steak!”
This is the slogan of the restaurant “Ikinari! Steak” (which translates to “Sudden! Steak”), which was founded by Kunio Ichinose.
The first restaurant opened in 2013 in Ginza and by 2015, there were 64 restaurants that have been opened and with a plan of 100 stores were planned by the end of the summer of 2016.
The concept is similar to some of the ramen and curry shops in Japan, in busy business district. The plan is this is not a restaurant for one to eat with friends and chat, but for one who wants to get something quality to eat and then leave.
Most of the Ikinari! Steak restaurants in Japan is standing room with some restaurants having introduced a reservation-only seated areas. And for its Ginza restaurant, they average 500 people a day.
And starting in May 2015, the Roppongi restaurant became the first to close at 4:00 a.m. The restaurant is also popular for adding a point card and also a prepaid card for those who tend to frequent the restaurant often. And quite often in Japan, you will see lines. But at the same time, because it’s for quick eating and many wanting a quick source of protein and desire steak, it explains the quick growth of the restaurants all over Tokyo.
The menu is quite simple. A Rib Roast (Rib Eye) steak goes for 1,650 yen for 300 grams (o.6 pounds) and 2,200 yen for 400 grams (0.88 pounds).
Sirloin Steak for 300 grams goes for 2,100 yen and 400 grams for 2,800 yen. Filet steak goes for 1,600 yen for 200 grams and 2,400 yen for 300 grams. The location I went to also offered Wild Hamburg (1,000 yen) and Wild Steak (1,200 yen).
And of course, you want to add sides such as a salad (25o yen), curry rice (200 yen), Rice (200 yen). Soda is 300 yen and liquor goes about 480-500 yen.
And now Kunio Ichinose has his eyes set on expanding abroad with a restaurant planned to debut in the East Village at 90 East 10th Street in New York.
While it will be interesting to see if the concept of standing and eating will work in New York, according to various sites, the New York location will have 50 seats and 15 tables. Because Ichinose applied for a liquor license, that means that the restaurant will try to balance conveniences for those who prefer to stand-up and sit-down to eat but also to chill out with friends, which would great here in the U.S.
For those going to Japan, it’s no doubt an interesting experience but it will be interesting to see how Ikinari! Steak does as a business, as it expands overseas.