Archive for the 'Japanese' Category

Breakfast from Farmer’s Market

Sunday, June 4th, 2006

Hi everyone! James finally found his camera but is still too lazy to update his blog, so this is his wife Bev writing the latest one for you.

Yesterday morning we headed out to the Farmer’s Market, which is becoming part of our weekly routine. The sun was out, the market was packed with people, and we were hungry. So we made our way through the crowd and found our way to a vendor that sells all kinds of musubis and Filipino foods. Choosing what foods to buy was a tough one because everything looked good, but here is what we got…

Breakfast from Farmer’s Market

… spam and egg musubi, teriyaki chicken musubi, and a tray of pancit. The drink we got from a nearby vendor — a fresh lilikoi drink for only $1! And da guy even wen put ice for free!

After our adventures at the market, we took our food back home to eat. First things first on my list of foods to try: the PANCIT! There wasn’t any meat in this pancit but was still really ono. It was mostly veggies and noodles, and oh yah! Kalamansi, which is a small lime that has a tangy and a little sour flavor — squeezing the juices all over the pancit is an essential part of the whole experience.

Farmer’s Market Pancit

Next, was their spam and egg musubi. A very flavorful musubi, I must say. I think the furikake and proportions of the musubi were just right. It was much better than a 7-11 Spam and Egg Deluxe Musubi. I wish I could say the same about the teriyaki chicken musubi, though. There was too much rice and the chicken was kinda dry. Kinda hard to eat, too, since had too much rice. I’ll need a bigger mouth to take one good bite of it!

Musubis

Finally, to wash down all the yummy foods we ate, we got our lilikoi drink with ice. It was freshly made and very refreshing — matched especially well with the spam and egg musubi.

Fresh Lilikoi Drink

This was a pleasant and fulfilling breakfast from the Farmers Market. I look forward to trying more things from this vendor next time, possibly their Arroz Caldo (rice soup). I heard it’s another popular choice from there.

We just want to thank everyone for all your wishes in the last post. We got wedding pictures up so you can view them at http://jamesrubio.net/wedding.

Restaurant Osaka

Tuesday, October 18th, 2005

You’ll find everything from Bul Go Ki to Tonkatsu Domburi…to Loco Mocos at Restaurant Osaka. I find myself coming here at least once a month for their homestyle cooking and maybe a beer or two from the lounge.

Osaka’s has two rooms: a lounge and a restaurant. Both rooms serve the same food, but one room is darker and has a more chill feel… sometimes it’s nice to eat in there. It is usually crowded with a full parking lot, and tonight was no exception.

Osaka’s Outside

Within a couple minutes we were served some miso soup. The waitress was very nice and friendly.

Osaka’s miso soup

Very yummy with fresh crunchy green onions.

Since I ended up ordering a Korean dish, I was also served these sides.

Osaka’s Kim Chi, Daikon, and potatoes

The kim chi was good. Spicier and more flavorful than the average kim chi from other places. The pickled daikon was nice and crisp. On the right are strips of well cooked potatoes seasoned with sesame oil, it seemed – nice flavor.

I was originally going to order the Spicy Chicken, which I was told was really good by the waitress, but she said that she prefers the Spicy Pork since it’s more tender. So I ordered the Spicy Pork ($8.95).

Spicy PorkSpicy Pork Close-up

The generous portion of Spicy Pork was served over a bed of vegetables on a hot metal plate shaped cutely like a cow. It smelled wonderful, and I love how it looked with the nice dark charred grill marks. The meat was very tender and juicy. The flavor of the meat was not too spicy, but I could taste that the marinade permeated through all the meat… it tasted great! The vegetables were nice to eat with the pork as well.

Also ordred was the one of the specials, Sweet Sour Spareribs (~$7).

Sweet Sour Spareribs

These spareribs were very tender and tasted great. The bones were soft enough to eat. There was not too much vinegar either. It tasted just right. The mac salad was one of the better mac salads I’ve tried… it had great consistency and flavor… it tasted like half potato and half macaroni.

We were also served some hot tea later. :)

Hot Tea

The food was great on this visit, and they are pretty consistent with the food quality. Unfortunately, I have not yet tried their loco moco. Also, I don’t recommend the saimin from here. Everything else I’ve tried was great, though, and the service is very pleasant!

Spam Lover’s Musubi from 7-11

Thursday, October 13th, 2005

Spam Lover’s Musubi

Pure genius.

Close-up: note the teri sauce

Note the layers of teriyaki sauce.

Simply amazing. :D

Miyo’s

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2005

It was a beautiful day in Hilo and my friend suggested we go to Miyo’s for lunch. I’ve only been to Miyo’s once years ago, and I remembered how nice it was there, so I was happy to go.

Miyo’s sits on the second story of a small building right next to Wailoa Pond.

Miyo’s outside

The view is beautiful, making for a very peaceful and relaxing dining experience.

Looking out to Wailoa Pond

Inside the restaurant is a very Japanese, homey, quaint atmosphere. Big opened Japanese style doors line the wall, leaving the room feel open. The kitchen is also in plain view, adding to the Japanese homey feel.

Miyo’s kitchen

There was a good amount of people for the time we went, considering it was well before noon. I noticed a lot of reservation signs on the tables, so reservations would probably be a good idea if you plan to go during prime-times, considering the small size of the restaurant. All of the window seats were taken, so we sat nearer the middle.

Within a couple minutes, we were served water, tsukemono, and miso soup. Service was very nice.

Wonderful miso soup!

I have to say that the miso soup was amazing! It was definitely the best miso soup I’ve had in recent memory. The broth was perfect, full of flavor and not too salty, with beautiful pieces of tofu and seaweed… very fresh and mouth-watering. The tsukemono was refreshing too. Great start. I was happy.

Looking over the menu there was a lot of reasonably priced (~$6-$9 a plate) homestyle Japanese food like tempura, teriyaki, sashimi, udon, curries, fresh fish, sukiyaki, various donburi dishes, sesame chicken (lots of people were ordering this), vegetarian dishes, and others. It was so hard to choose. I ended up ordering the beef curry. *sigh* I know, I’m sorry. Only after I’ve ordered did I remember that I just wrote about beef curry in my last entry! I just had a beef curry craving again, ok? No worry though! My friend ordered the sesame chicken and tempura, which I have also tried.

A green salad came with the beef curry.

Green Salad

All the vegetables were crisp, fresh, and organic tasting. The tomato was plump and sweet. The dressing was a great tasting homemade oil and vinegar dressing.

The beef curry came shortly after.

Miyo’s Beef Curry

This has got to be one of the most healthy beef curries I’ve seen. :D There was lots of broccoli, carrots, eggplant, and mushrooms along with the beef. So how did it taste? The curry sauce was good. It had a good flavor and it had a good heat/spiciness to it. It wasn’t as rich as Curry House’s curry, but it was still satisfying, especially with all the vegetables. The rice was good and the pickled radishes were nice, sweet and tangy. It tasted healthy, which is a good thing I guess, but I will probably not order it next time.

Then came the Sesame Chicken & Tempura combo.

Sesame Chicken & Tempura

Now this looked really good! The sesame chicken and tempura (shrimp and vegetables) was served over fresh greens (similar to my salad) and served with rice and tempura sauce. I managed to steal a good piece of the sesame chicken. The sesame chicken was crisp deep-fried boneless chicken with a sweet, thick, and rich sesame sauce. It was hard to tell what was in the sauce, but it was very good. I think this is one of their more popular dishes since I’ve seen other tables around with the same chicken. I also stole a bit of tempura. The tempura and the sauce was excellent, although the sweet potato tempura was a little undercooked. Otherwise, it was very yummy.

Miyo’s was a great experience and I don’t know why I haven’t come back here for a long time. Along with the great atmosphere, attention to freshness, and healthy food choices, Miyo’s is a great place to go. I will most likely be returning here more regularly.

Miyo’s
400 Hualani Street
Hilo, Hawaii 96720
Tel: (808) 935-2273

Curry House CoCo Ichibanya (Oahu, July ’05)

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2005

Oahu Food Adventures, July 2005 (part 1of 5)

This is part one of a 5-part post from my recent visit to Oahu. I’ll try to disperse the following places along with Big Island places over the next few weeks: Angelo Pietro, Kaka`ako Kitchen, Elena’s, Yotteko-ya (thanks for the recommendation reid!), and Popeye’s.

Visiting Oahu makes me feel like a child in a candy store, except now, I feel like a guy with so many great food choices, I don’t know what to do! I’m originally from Oahu, and every time I go back, so many fond memories come back to me.

Curry House is a successful franchise originating from Japan and I just *have to* eat here every time I go to Oahu. I hear they have hundreds of them in Japan! Oahu is lucky to have 5 locations: Waikiki, University Ave, Ala Moana, Pearl Kai Shopping Center, and McCully Shopping Center. Most of the time, they are consistent in quality and taste.

We went to the Pearl Kai Shopping Center one this time. The people are really nice here and the food is always good at this location.

Pearl Kai Curry House outside

It was really crowded! We had to wait a few minutes before getting a seat. While waiting, there were a lot of take-out orders being picked up.

Take out orders at Curry House

We then ended up sitting at the bar, which is a good thing since we get a free entertainment show. Watching them pour the curry over fresh hot rice and meats is so exciting!

Curry House Kitchen

There are so many different kinds of items to choose to go with your curry! They use the same curry sauce (spicy or mild) for all the dishes, but the variations are endless when you mix it with the different items on the menu. You can choose how much rice you want and if you want spicy or mild curry.

Menu Front Cover

Curry House Menu

I ordered the beef curry (my fav), a side of cream corn croquette (a new item), and we also shared a side salad. Click on the menu above to see a sample of the different kinds of curries!

Beef Curry

The beef curry was so good. Curry House’s curry is a Japanese style curry. It’s very smooth, rich, thick, spicy, and a little sweet. The beef pieces are so tender, too. Also, I love the beef curry because they stew the beef with the curry, and the beef flavor permeates all of the curry, making it so rich and flavorful.

Cream Corn Croquette

The cream corn croquette tasted like cream corn made into a hash, then breaded and deep fried. It was a bit sweet and went very well with the spicy beef curry. Very yummy!

Green Salad

The salad was really good too. What makes this salad is their great tasting shoyu-based dressing and the corn.

Chicken Cutlet with Spinach

Bev ordered Chicken Cutlet with Spinach Curry!

This was quite tasty as well. The chicken was nice and crispy and the spinach tasting really fresh and not overcooked. I’m so proud of Bev since she graduated to spicy curry, which tastes so much better than the mild! ;)

Fukujinzuke!

All set to eat? Don’t forget the pickled vegetables called Fukujinzuke, I think. It’s great sprinkled over the curry.

I’d love to know what other people like to order at Curry House. And If you haven’t eaten here yet, you must!

Curry House Coco Ichibanya
98-199 Kamehameha Hwy in the Pearl Kai Shopping Center
Aiea, Hawaii 96701