INTERVIEWS

Authentic South Indian Veg Curries cooked by the owner trained in India! Spice Box【Kanda】

”Spice Box” is a curry restaurant located within a five-minute walk from Kanda Station.

In the restaurant opened in January 2016, you can enjoy authentic South Indian cuisine cooked by the owner, Mr. Nobuaki Tonai who trained in India.

The curry base sauce is made only with vegetables and the curries are talked a lot today among vegetarians and vegans.

Click here for location and detailed information on Spice Box.

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Suiting Japanese tastes, South India, Kerala-style curry


The curries served in Spice Box are South Indian curries. Mr.Tonai refers to the recipes of Kerala where he stayed during his cookery training.

”Many Kerala recipes are created to be served with rice. I think the taste will be appreciated by Japanese people.

People from Kerala also come here and they are happy with the taste saying ‘It’s the taste of Kerala!’”

Mr.Tonai said that his curries maintain the taste of Kerala and add more ingredients. They are like Japanese pork miso soup upgraded from plain miso soup according to him.

He uses Japanese rice. Because he wants many people to enjoy his curries, he decided to go for Japanese rice with which Japanese people are familiar.

“We cook rice with cauldron instead of rice cooker. For my curry and rice, I cared about the quality of rice.

If I did not care about the rice which occupies a half of the plate, people may be less impressed with my curries haha.”

For vegetable based curry sauce, many vegetarians also come.


Spice Box also receives a lot of vegetarians.

”We serve ‘anchovy sauce’ for salads. Most of customers who ask not to serve the sauce are vegetarians. I think we have about 3 to 5 vegetarian customers a day.”

Also it has regular non-Japanese customers including many Indian people. We can see how the curry taste is appreciated with a number of repeat customers.

“Vegetables and dal curry” is recommended!


In terms of the seasonings, the curries of Spice Box are cooked simply with spices, salt and water. And sugar is seldom used.

“Making the most of the taste of ingredients creates a delicious dish even only using simple seasonings.”

There are 5 kinds of curry menus. One out of the five is a curry of the day and others are the restaurant’s standard curries.

The base curry sauce is cooked only with vegetable and suitable for vegetarians.

”Using the base curry sauce, we serve 5 kinds of curry including chicken curry. During my cookery training in India, I learnt many recipes.

However, when I consider the balance between vegetables and meat, vegetable curry option does not come as a surprise.

Eating only the vegetable base curry sauce makes us satisfied.”

The most recommended curry is “vegetables and dal curry”. It is the second most popular curry after the chicken curry.

The beautiful and Instagrammable looks are also very popular among female customers. But the main customers for this curry is male customers.

”To be honest, I was not sure if the vegetable and dal curry was accepted by customers. However, it is sold better than expected and often sold out.

Some regular customers order only for the vegetable and dal curry. It has many male enthusiasts.”

It is a vegetable curry but very filling as well as healthy.

As many people are concerned about healthy eating, the vegetable and dal curry succeeds in attracting also the male customers.


The most popular chicken curry is also filling. Plus, it is cooked with the vegetable base curry sauce. Thus it contains meat but is surely good for healthy eating!

The curries are available for takeout. The price is reasonable, 690 yen each.

Just for your information, every Wednesday the curries are served with multigrain rice instead of white rice.

”We serve multigrain rice on Wednesday when more female customers use us. It is well appreciated. Some customers come here only on Wednesday for the multigrain rice.”

The restaurant is expected to be very busy mainly with female customers at every Wednesday lunch time. If you want to try it, it is better to go as early as possible!

Healthy “Veg First”, enjoy special salads before curries


”We serve a salad first. So called “Veg First”.

While they are eating a salad, we want to raise customer’s expectations for the curry. Therefore we really care about the quality of our salads.”

“Veg First” means eating vegetables first before main dish. It can suppress a rapid rise in blood glucose level and positive effect on health is expected.

It also brings a sense of satisfy and will prevent overeating.

You can choose a salad from among 3 kinds, “Kerala Chicken”, “Spicy Potato Salad” and “Potato Salad”.

They are served with the anchovy sauce. If you are vegetarian or vegan, you can ask not to use it.

Homemade Lassi made with whey is also nice.


The lunch menus come with a Lassi. This is also one of the specialties made with homemade yogurt.

Enjoy the South Indian Cuisine with drinks in evening!


Spice Box is very busy at lunchtime. However, it also bustles in evening with people enjoying the South Indian cuisine with drinks.

”More and more office workers in this area who came for lunch book a table for dinner. A variety of menus matching drinks is available. I wish people also enjoy our evening menus.”


”Kerala porotta” is one of the recommendations. The recipe is rather complicated. Make layered Naan dough and then bake it like croissant.

Using Kerala flour creates the real Kerala taste. It is hard to find this menu in other restaurants.

”I was shocked when I had porotta for the first time in India. I was always thinking to include this in my menu when I would have my own restaurant.

The cooking procedure is four times longer than that of usual Naan. But the taste is guaranteed!”

Furthermore, a variety of rice such as Biryani and Plain Pulao which go well with curries is available.

Order “meals” where various curries are served in a small portion to share with friends and enjoy drinking, which is also nice.

We will be delivering more articles to keep you up to date on healthy and useful topics, so please share with your friends!

*The information contained in the article is as of the date when we interviewed and subject to change. We strongly recommend that you make an inquiry to the store prior to your visit.

Store Information

Click here for location and detailed information on Spice Box.

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