Saturday, September 15, 2007

More Takayama Eats And Dinner At An Izakaya

Another reason we chose to walk around town are the many eateries along the street, at almost every corner there is bound to be 'something' to try and as we only had this one day to try everything we did just that...

Okonomiyaki

Okonomiyaki is sometimes referred to as a Japanese pancake or pizza. The batter and ingredients like vegetables, seafood and eggs are fried on both sides on a hot plate (teppan).

She topped it with a sauce (like Worcestershire sauce but thicker and sweeter - very similar to tonkatsu sauce), shredded nori, bonito flakes and Japanese mayonnaise. Yummy!!

There was a queue at the front of this restuarant and was packed when we first walked past and to us, packed means good food and a must-try. It has a take-away counter at the side and we tried some of its fare to whet our appetite...

This got to be the best thing we have had on this trip - chunks of dice-sized hida beef on bamboo skewers grilled to perfection. Every bite evoked pleasurable moans of ohs and ahs....So tender and so juicy!


Hidagyu sushi

The thin slivers of beef, cooked with a blow torch (see the last picture in the previous post - Takayama old town), placed on sushi rice and served on a tasty rice cracker.

Hida chuka - Chinese noodle in Hida

Later in the afternoon, we returned to the shop and finally managed to get a seat in the restaurant.

I had the hidagyu ramen. This Chinese noodle is unique to Takayama. It is served with a soup based of dried bonito and soy sauce. The ramen noodles totally out shined the slices of hida beef in this instant. They are thin (very much like soba), has just the perfect chewiness and to me, the best noodle I have ever tasted but thinking hard I can't recall any bad experience with noodles in Japan, ever! The soup looked dark and appeared salty but actually tasted very light.


K had the pork belly ramen. He didn't think much of the soup and I know why, he only like his ramen with miso-based soup.

Had more of the hidagyu sushi.

After all that greediness in the afternoon walk we thought we would go for a light dinner. So we chose an izakaya, a pub cum diner. It is a type of restaurant more for drinking and food served are catered more to go with drinks. It is less formal and all share the dishes rather than individually. Very popular among the Japanese.


The bar area

Waited for all the patrons to clear and snapped this shot. Just wanted to showcase the bar table top made of one single piece of timber cut lengthwise about 15-20 cm thick, 80 cm wide and 5 metres long!! That really got K drooling.

The izakaya quaint interior.

A most refreshing cold tofu dish with soy and garnished with chopped ginger, leek and dried bonito flakes.

Hidagyu again. Can't seem to get enough of these. Grilled to medium rare - so tender and juicy with every bite.
A grilled fish.

Fried tofu perfectly done in a wild mushroom broth.

Do as the Japanese do in Japan--drink! This sake was cold and really good (we were told that only in winter or if the sake is of inferior quality that it is drank warmed).

A lovely cold Sapporo beer.

Jo

3 comments:

Precious Pea said...

The sushi served on rice cracker? Wow...really unique. Sniff..you make me feels like flying off to Japan now.

The Drool Team said...

Hahaha, advertising for Japan 4 free...

Anonymous said...

Aiyo, the hidagyu sushi... I swear it looked like the meat was still mooing.

The outlet was very very pretty, as very quaint as you put it.

The fact about cold sake was darn interesting - I see myself quoting it during the Japanese lunches and looking more knowledgeable, heh heh.

Cheers//frank