Restaurant to Another World (Isekai Shokudou)

Genre(s): Food, Isekai

Age-Appropriateness: 12+ (Mild language, occasional suggestive themes)

Platforms: Crunchyroll, Funimation

Episodes: 12

TheAwersome Rating: 8.2 / 10

Premise: Western Restaurant Nekoya is a popular eatery located on a street corner in a Tokyo shopping district. Serving both traditional Japanese fare as well as Western dishes, this eating establishment is popular among Tokyo’s residents. But this seemingly ordinary restaurant is also popular with another type of clientele. While the restaurant is thought to be closed on Saturdays, the truth is that on this special day each week, its doors are instead opened to the inhabitants of other worlds. From dragons and elves to fairies and mages, this restaurant has no shortage of strange customers. Nevertheless, the enigmatic chef known only as “Master” will be waiting to serve up their favorite dishes with a kind smile and keep them coming back for many more Saturdays to come.

TheAwersome’s Thoughts: With the simpleness of the premise and plot, I was surprised with the production value on this one. Art and animation are high quality, and the soundtrack helps settle you in all comfy-like with wonderful use of the bassoon, piano, and general orchestra. While you might think this sounds just like Isekai Izakaya, the two are very different. While both celebrate the family that regulars create at a restaurant, we get more of a focus on individual customers’ personal lives here in more of a vignette fashion. This is also much more of a magical fantasy world with all kinds of races, magic, beasts, etc. If Isekai Izakaya’s strength was making Beer look the best it’s ever been, than this one’s strength is presenting fried food as the most appealing and delicious food you’ve ever seen. There was also slightly a more mature vibe to this one. I’m glad to have both.

TLDR: A fun, cozy, and stress-free vignette piece of various customers discovering great food.

Like Isekai Izakaya, a big part of this show’s charm is the relationship/rivalry that the regulars form with each other. There’s both the camaraderie of being in company of those who share fine taste and the need to prove to them that your personal taste is just a bit better than theirs, though. Part of that is that the customers most often refer to each other by their most-ordered dish, so the lizard-man’s name is “Omurice,” the half-elf princess is referred to as “Parfait,” etc. I was honestly reminded of my beloved stream viewers and their shenanigans, so it warmed the cockles of this curmudgeon’s heart.

Here’s a preview with that cozy bassoon.

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