Luxury meal has a lot to live up to.

There are a whole lot of bento boxed meals to choose from in Tokyo, and though the vast majority of them are reasonably priced, you can also get some high-end varieties at extremely high price points.

Being cheap bento eaters, we’ve always wondered what some of the more expensive varieties contain, but on a recent trip to the EATo LUMINE food section inside the ticket gates at Shinjuku Station, we spotted a high-priced bento that totally seduced us.

EATo LUMINE recently opened on 17 April.

It might have been the sleek fitout of the store selling it or the all-over packaging that initially caught our eye, but when we saw  it was called the “Blossoming Spring Bento“, and it was being sold by “Himitsu Kitchen” (“Secret Kitchen“), we were sold.

It felt odd to hand over 3,240 yen (US$20.97) for a bento but seeing as April is the month for rewarding yourself, we decided we were worth it. Plus, there was a level of excitement here that we don’t usually get with a regular bento, largely due to the fact that we couldn’t see what was inside it.

The two-tiered bento was heavy to hold, and when we opened it, the contents inside the top layer were presented like a blossoming spring field.

With a variety of seasonal vegetables spread over rice, this layer was simple, but absolutely delicious.

The vegetables were seasoned to go well with the rice, and every mouthful was like a bright taste of spring. The quality of the ingredients was a standout and extended to the side dishes on the lower tier.

With roast beef, pickles and fish amongst the side dishes, this was a delicious spread containing so many different ingredients we found it difficult to count them all.

According to the blurb on the back of the box, the bento ingredients change monthly, adding to its appeal. Plus, with Himitsu Kitchen describing it as the “ultimate seasonal lunch box” that captures “the natural scenery of Japanese cuisine, flowers, birds, wind and moon in a box”, the journey it takes your mind on while you eat it is priceless.

So in the end, the Secret Kitchen bento was well worth the price tag. Fresh, healthy, high-quality meals like these are a great reminder of how great bentos can be, and why they’re sometimes worth splurging on. The grass is always greener on the higher end of the price spectrum, and sometimes the ingredients are too.

Shop information
Himitsu Chuubou Shinjuku store / 秘密厨房新宿店
Address: JR Shinjuku Station B1F Ii Lumine (towards the west ticket gate)
Hours: 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.

Related: EATo LUMINE
Photos ©SoraNews24

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