Success Story: The Best Filipino Restaurant in Tokyo

Success Story: The Best Filipino Restaurant in Tokyo

Mr. Joel San Jose, the owner of Isla Pamilya Restaurant, opened his Filipino restaurant to help fellow Filipinos fight homesickness by bringing favorite Filipino dishes to Japan. The first branch was opened in Kawasaki in 1997. His business has been running for 24 years already!


Getting to know Joel


Joel started his adventure in Japan way back in the 1980s. He’s been living in Japan for 37 years now. He also got into different jobs such as a factory worker and on site worker before he decided to open a Filipino restaurant with his wife to cater the needs of other Filipinos in Japan.


Running a business in Japan

According to Joel, it’s a bit tough running your own business in Japan compared to the Philippines because as the boss you also have to do everything yourself because getting help from others is not easy and can be costly. So, in order to save, as the owner, you have to work hands on. 


Difficulties faced due to COVID-19

Joel was also forced to close his restaurant when Japan faced the first wave of the pandemic but because he had commitments and bills to pay, they decided to re-open after a few months of being closed. They just need to follow the very strict health protocols in Japan to stay afloat. Good thing the Japanese government has been very supportive to Filipinos during the pandemic so they are able to survive amidst difficulty.


Isla Pamilya Menu

Joel invites all Filipinos in Japan to satisfy their Filipino food cravings at Isla Pamilya located in Tokyo near Kamata Station. Their best sellers are Kare Kare, Dinuguan, Sisig, Crispy Pata and Lechon Kawali. Every Saturday and Sunday, they have eat-all-you-can and you can also join the Zumba dance sessions at 6PM to 8PM to burn all calories consumed during the eat-all-you-can spree.


The video documentation below is brought to you again by Delta TV. Delta Co. Ltd. is a Tokyo-based company offering assistance to Filipino workers in Japan. As the demand for foreign workers rises in the countryside, Delta aims to promote Filipino workforce to the country’s rural region.


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