The only place in the world where you can try 10 different Ikea veggie dogs. 

Swedish furniture retail chain Ikea has been changing up their big-warehouse-out-of-the-city concept in Japan recently by opening up smaller branches in the heart of Tokyo.

This means it’s not only easier than ever to get our hands on their flatpack furniture and accessories, it also means we now get to enjoy Ikea food on a more regular basis. In fact, it’s the food that sets the new banches apart, as the store in Harajuku that opened last year specialises in 16 different tunnbröd flatbreads and now, at the new location that opened in Shibuya on 30 November, you can stuff your face with not one but 10 different veggie dogs.

▼ The new Ikea is just moments from Shibuya Station, where Forever 21 was once located

We were keen to try the new veggie dogs, but there are restrictions on admission to the new Ikea at the moment to keep crowds down. Those wanting to visit on a weekday morning or anytime on the weekend are required to make a prior reservation via their website, but reservations aren’t currently required for weekday afternoons.

We headed out on a weekday morning, taking our pre-reserved ticket number with us, and after a smooth entry into the shiny new building, we found the veggie dog specialty store right by the entrance on the first floor.

▼ This is currently the only Ikea veggie dog specialty store in the world.

Looking at the menu, there were 10 different veggie dogs to choose from, and they were all incredibly well priced, ranging from a super low 80 yen (US$0.77) for a regular Veggie Dog, up to 460 yen for a Salmon Veggie Dog.

▼ The prices in bold are for a set that includes chips and a regular-sized cold drink.

Japan is known for its cheap, value-for-money lunches, but these prices were insanely low, even by local standards. This is one place where we can definitely afford to order the most expensive meal on the menu, so we ordered the Lappland on its own, adding some mashed potatoes for an extra 60 yen and a hot coffee for 50 yen, bringing our lunch total to 570 yen.

▼ We received a numbered tag after placing our order and waited for staff to call out our number when the meal was ready.

After about 10 minutes, our order was ready. We grabbed a seat nearby, opened the lid on our takeout pack, and were immediately pleased with the portions.

It may have been cheap, but it sure didn’t look it. The presentation was beautiful, and they didn’t skimp on the ingredients either, as the salmon, lettuce, arugula and dill were all bursting out of the dog.

Hidden underneath it all was a juicy, flavourful veggie patty. As it didn’t contain any meat, it was light and refreshing to eat, and the size was perfect for filling the stomach without overfilling it.

The dog was excellent, but what surprised us was how good the mashed potatoes were. They were warming, creamy and satisfying — particularly delicious for a cold winter’s day.

The potatoes had a natural sweetness, and we seriously considered buying a few tubs to spread on toast at home. Mash on toast with grilled cheese on top would make for a tasty snack at any time of the day or night!

Now that we’ve tried one veggie dog, we can’t wait to go back and try them all. Thankfully we won’t have to travel to the outskirts of the city anymore to get a taste of Ikea, as it’s now just a few stops away from our office in Shinjuku. Which reminds us…it’s almost time for us to start stocking up on Ikea’s awesome fukubukuro lucky bags which should be appearing at the beginning of next year!

Store Information
Ikea Shibuya Sweden Bistro / イケア渋谷 スウェーデンビストロ
Address: Tokyo-to, Shibuya-ku, Udagawacho 24-1
Open 11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. (Closed New Year’s Day)

Images © SoraNews24, Ikea Japan Press Release  
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