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“Wish the restaurant was in my hometown” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Chaya Restaurant

Chaya Restaurant
118 Banff Avenue, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta AB T1L, Canada
(403) 760-0882
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Ranked #63 of 120 restaurants in Banff
Cuisines: Asian, Japanese, Noodle
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Restaurant details
Good for: Dining on a budget
Dining options: Lunch
San Francisco, California
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Wish the restaurant was in my hometown”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2013

By chance, we came across this restaurant on our first day and it got us through all our long hikes on subsequent days. After hours of hiking, when we were still several miles from the trailhead, and our legs were getting weary, we just started thinking of dinner at Chaya (even though we kept telling ourselves we would try a new restaurant each day) and we would end up back at its door for its gyudon (beef over rice).

We ordered three dishes each day, although gyudon was always one of the dishes. We tried their ramen and different udon, but the gyudon was the most memorable. I have not had gyudon like that since studying in Japan.

This is a hole-in-the-wall type restaurant, so it is small an seating is limited. Another dissatisfied reviewer mentioned having to wait outside in the rain. That is a good warning because there is no room to wait inside, unless you are standing in the aisle. We tried to arrive by 6pm each day to avoid lines and saw how quickly this place can fill up.

  • Visited September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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67 reviews from our community

77% Recommend
    27
    25
    11
    1
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Calgary, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 restaurant reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Best udon!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2013

Bare bones establishment, but amazing food!! Definitely order the tempura udon for a mouthwatering experience.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Top Contributor
144 reviews 144 reviews
71 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 74 cities Reviews in 74 cities
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
“You will never leave hungry”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2013 via mobile

You will leave full and wishing you could have squeezed in that last bit of oishii food! Forget the other reviews, nothing tastes or even resembles packaged food. The service is always friendly, smiling and appreciative of your business. A tasty, inexpensive option for travellers on a budget.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Banff
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“BORN AND RAISED LOCAL, my favourite place to eat in banff”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 22, 2013 via mobile

Beef don. Tan tan. Everything. All other reviews are dumb. The service is awesome. Food is always good. I grew up in banff and I always come here onmy days off and all the girls are always so good to me.

    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tampa, Florida
2 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“just like japan”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2013

this little restaurant might not look like much from the outside (parked right next to a mcdonalds)- but the food is excellent- not expensive like many other Banff establishments- and IS indeed authentic Japanese. I would like to address some previous reviewers comments that the ramen is not Japanese and "just because it is run by Japanese people doenst make the food Japanese". Clearly these comments are coming from someone who doesn't really know Japanese food. My wife and I are Japanese- from Kyushu- the southern island of Japan- and the ramen we had at Chaya is exactly like the ramen from Kyushu. As any Japanese would know, cuisine styles vary by region- ramen in the south differs slightly from other areas. The egg noodles, the bean sprouts, etc are just like how it is made in Kyushu. The broth was clearly a homemade stock- the chashu (bbq pork) tender and tasty. We went back to this place several times- curry, udon, and more ramen (all perfect for cold winter days!). I hate when people make reviews without knowing what they are talking about. This place is perfect for a quick and inexpensive meal that will satisfy your taste buds for sure...(id also like to add- that the place is physically just like something you would find in Japan- a tiny narrow shop with very limited seating- this is what most ramen shops are like in Japan).

  • Visited January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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