The series Tokyo Restaurants and their Very Beautiful Dishes (Tokyo ryori sukoburu beppin) depicts geisha and waitresses at popular restaurants in Tokyo. The entire series of nineteen known designs were initially published by Yorozuya Magobei (1843-1921) in the 9th lunar month of 1871 utilizing a bright color palette saturated with intense aniline dyes. Evidentially not long thereafter Magobei sold the blocks to Maruya Jinpachi (active ca. 1759-1872), one of the older publishing houses of Edo, who favored a more restrained use of aniline pigments. This was one of Yoshitoshi's few series dedicated to bijin, who are the 'Very Beautiful Dishes' of the title. Given Yoshitoshi's propensity for dynamic supernatural or violent subjects, it is perhaps not surprising that the stylistic departure of the elegant women and interiors toying with Western point perspective featured in this series were produced with the participation of several of his students, suggesting that the now well-established Yoshitoshi could expand his market to incorporate other genres with the man-power provided by his studio.

Nishiyama 1997, pp. 164-169

The Takisoba Restaurant at Otowa
The Shoeitei Restaurant at Kubocho
The Kurumaya Restaurant at Shiba Shinmei
The Yaozen Restaurant at San ya

Scholten Japanese Art is open Monday - Friday, and some Saturdays by appointment only

Contact Katherine Martin at
(212) 585-0474 or email
to schedule a visit between 11am and 4pm preferably for no more than two individuals at a time.
Visitors are asked to wear face masks and practice social distancing at their discretion.

site last updated
December 1, 2022

Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
ph: (212) 585-0474
fx: (212) 585-0475