We, Hakata TonTon—serve Japanese soul food originating
from Southern Japan, Hakata, Fukuoka Prefecture.
Fukuoka, known as the "gateway to Asia" with its historical
and geographical background— had a strong trade relationship
with China and Korea. With such diversity, it left a rich
food culture, Japanese at heart, with heavy influences of
Korean and Chinese cuisines.
TonTon brought into play this melting pot of cultures and
developed it even further to bring a unique, adventurous
palette to New York City for over 13 years. We aim to be a
one-of-a- kind Japanese Restaurant, challenging ourselves
and continuously bringing exciting flavors to create
truly memorable experiences for our guests.
Chef Koji Hagihara was born in Yamanashi, Japan.
His career began in 1989 as a Chef at the Dynasty Restaurant
in Hilton Tokyo Bay and later transitioned to the
Louran Chinese Restaurant within the Kyoto Shouzan Resort.
In 2002, he worked as the Sous Chef at one of the most
prestigious Chinese Restaurants in Japan known as
Wakiya Ichiemicharo. During his time there, he became the
right-hand man to the world famous Iron Chef Wakiya. He had the opportunity to appear in many TV shows, magazines,
and events held throughout Japan.
In 2007, he moved to New York City and assisted with the
opening of the new Wakiya Restaurant at the Gramercy Park
Hotel; holding the title of Executive Chef. After two years of working and entertaining top VIP clientele at Wakiya,
he wanted to further challenge himself and decided to transition to Hakata TonTon— a very different Japanese Restaurant that serves unique dishes. Working there for eight years, not only did TonTon become one of the most popular Japanese Restaurants in NYC, Chef Koji also developed his very own cooking style. Continuing into the future, he wishes to grow with TonTon and share its spirit and culture to more people.
Making people smile through food