Archive for the 'Japanese' Category

Musubi Cafe Iyasume – Honolulu (Waikiki)

Musubi Cafe Iyasume - Waikiki - Honolulu

I never got around to writing about the trip to Oahu that The Astronomer and I took last April because “morning” sickness hit hard soon after we came home, putting me out of blogging commission for quite a while. But now that Baby June’s out and about (yay!), and all is right with my appetite (double yay!), it’s finally time to revisit the ono grindz that made our stay a fabulous one.

Musubi Cafe Iyasume - Waikiki - Honolulu

The eatery with the honor of being visited the most was Musubi Cafe Iyasume, a shoe-box sized spot serving musubi and onigiri that is adored by locals and visitors alike. The J Gold peeped this place in Food & Wine, and as luck would have it, it was located a stone’s throw from our Waikiki abode. Win!

Musubi Cafe Iyasume - Waikiki - Honolulu

The Astronomer and I visited Iyasume on our first morning in town for a relatively light breakfast of two musubi and two onigiri.

The bacon, egg, and Spam musubi ($2.48) was as tasty as hoped, with the bacon and Spam providing a double savory punch while the egg and rice balanced out the whoosh of saltiness.
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Sunday Noodles at Yusho – Chicago

Yusho - Chicago

I love how Chicago’s restaurants embrace excess, highlighting meat and fat in every form at all meals and price points. Sure it’s indulgent, reckless even, but under a thoughtful chef’s care, this kind of cooking can be exhilarating. See: Avec, Little Goat, and Au Cheval.

Sometimes though, especially after a few days of glorious extravagance, all I desire is the comfort of a warm bowl of noodle soup. Hello, Yusho.

Yusho - Chicago

Owned and operated by Chef Mathias Merges, formerly the Executive Chef at Charlie Trotter’s for fourteen years, Yusho is a “a yakitori-inspired restaurant.” The space was designed by Merges’s wife, Rachel Crowl.

The menu here is usually focused on grilled meats on a stick, but Sundays are dedicated to noodles. The special Sunday Noodles menu is priced at $20 per guest and includes a bowl of noodles, dessert, and a beverage. It was just what The Astronomer and I were craving after going balls to wall for meals on end.

Yusho - Chicago

We both selected alcoholic drinks to pair with our noodles. For me, a frothy coconut, lime, and rum “kegged cocktail” that was available on draught. Every sip whisked my taste buds off to somewhere warm and tropical.

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{swoon} A5 Japanese Wagyu Tasting at Katana

Three-Way Wagyu Tasting: New York, Ribeye, Filet Mignon

Gastronomy’s fancy streak continues at Katana for Wagyu Week, going on now through March 9. In honor of the occasion, Chef Koji Matsuzaki has prepared a special menu featuring certified A5-grade Japanese Wagyu beef from Saga Prefecture. Of all the outrageously decadent preparations available, it was the “Three-Way Tasting” of New York, Ribeye, and Filet Mignon that was most swoon-worthy of all.

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Sushi Kanesaka – Tokyo

Sushi Kanesaka - Tokyo

After downing three bowls of ramen at Ikaruga & Tokyo Edoama on Ramen Street in Tokyo Station, The Astronomer and I made our way above ground and headed for dinner. We weren’t the slightest bit hungry, of course, but with only ten hours in Tokyo, it didn’t really matter. Two omakase, coming right up!

Sushi Kanesaka - Tokyo

Our destination this evening was Sushi Kanesaka, a two-star Michelin establishment owned and operated by Chef Kanesaka. The specialty here is Edomae sushi, a traditional style that emphasizes the purity of the ingredients; no bells or whistles, just meticulously prepared rice and the most pristine seafood.

Sushi Kanesaka - Tokyo

The restaurant, unceremoniously located in the basement of a building in Ginza, is quite small, with just sixteen counter seats. The cost for dinner is ¥20,000, approximately $200. We weren’t seated in Chef Kanesaka’s area this evening, but we were well taken care of by his associate.

Here’s a course-by-course rundown of the superb omakase we enjoyed this evening, along with a few notes. We were joined at Sushi Kanesaka by our friend and Tokyo resident Tomo.

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