And once you try their Potato Salad Toast…you won’t want to order anything else!

Did you know that Bikkuri Donkey has a breakfast menu? Yes, the hamburger steak restaurant chain chosen by diners as one of Japan’s best-value family restaurants started offering breakfast at select Kanto locations in November 2020. Since then, they’ve expanded their breakfast menu to just about every branch of Bikkuri Donkey in the country, from Hokkaido all the way down to Kagoshima.

In the capital, 20 Bikkuri Donkey restaurants currently offer breakfast. Our Japanese-language reporter and foodie Mr. Sato visited the Ikebukuro Sunshine-doori branch, since his preferred branch in Shinjuku had unfortunately closed.

Breakfast at Bikkuri Donkey is from opening until 11 a.m. The menu has three options: Tamagokake Gohan (also known as TKG or egg over rice); the Minimum Dish Set, which includes a 100-gram (3.5-ounce) hamburger steak, a salad, and rice; and the Toast Set, which offers toast, a boiled egg, and a drink, with the option of adding a salad. Coffee orders–whether iced or hot–get free refills, but if you choose miso soup instead of coffee, you won’t get free refills, so choose carefully.

Mr. Sato didn’t have a hard time deciding what to order. Though he loves hamburger steaks, he didn’t want to eat any for breakfast. “I can eat hamburger steaks for lunch or dinner,” he thought. “For breakfast, I want to eat breakfast food!”

That only left the Toast Sets–because you can eat TKG at any time, too. The next question was, did he want plain toast, cheese toast, or “Potesara” toast, made with potesara (potato salad)? The answer was clear. Plain toast and cheese toast you can get anywhere…but Potesara? Well, you can get potesara at other places, too, but Mr. Sato was at Bikkuri Donkey so he had to order something, and Potesara sounded the most exciting, so that’s what he ordered.

Lastly Mr. Sato had the option of ordering the drink set (495 yen [US$3.53) or the drink and salad set (605 yen). Truth be told, Mr. Sato would be happy with or without a salad, as long as he had his Potesara Toast, so he decided on the drink set. For his drink, he ordered iced coffee.

For a drink that came with free refills, the glass was huge! Drinking just two of these would have had Mr. Sato bouncing off the walls (and probably running for the toilet), so he wouldn’t be taking advantage of the free refill this time. Coffee fans would likely rejoice, however.

As for the main dish of Potesara Toast, it was two slices of shokupan, or Japanese thick-sliced white bread, topped with potato salad and cheese and toasted, then cut in half.

It looked genuinely delicious. You might always be inclined to go for the big bold hamburger steaks when you go to a place like Bikkuri Donkey, but you can’t fault simple, ordinary looking fair like this, either.

The toast had a really delightful texture; it made a very satisfying crunch when he bit into it. It tasted more like potato gratin than potato salad, which was not a bad thing by any stretch. There was also a bit of mustard hidden in there somewhere, and that spice really worked to tie all the flavors together.

It was so good that when he finished it, Mr. Sato knew he would want to eat it again. There was no doubt he would ever order anything else for breakfast at Bikkuri Donkey. If you try it, you, too will likely feel the same.

Of course, other family restaurants offer breakfast too, all offering different dishes at different prices. If you’re a breakfast fan, you’ll want to take advantage of their menus and find your favorite at each one!

Restaurant Information
Bikkuri Donkey Ikebukuri Sunshine-doori Branch / びっくりドンキー池袋サンシャイン通り店
Tokyo-to Toshima-ku Ikebukuro 1-21-11 Oak Ikebukuro Building B1F
東京都豊島区東池袋1-21-11 オーク池袋ビルB1F
Hours: 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. (last order at 10:30)

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[ Read in Japanese ]