Japan

Old Feb 5th 2017, 12:01 pm
  #31  
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Default Re: Japan

Thanks M-A-T.

Much appreciated. I can't wait to start properly planning and booking.

I like the sound of this Robatayaki. My personal 'fear' or trepidation about Japan in general is the heavy seafood presence. I'm not a big fish eater, I do eat some but just don't enjoy it greatly. I don't want to miss out on too much in terms of trying food, nor do I want to end up stuck just devouring boring food.

I'm generally quite good at avoiding Western food on holiday totally, because that's part of the experience. Just a touch nervous about choice in Japan (not having looked into it massively) being very much that way inclined.

I'm probably being daft and it just needs 4 minutes research, but I just haven't done it yet.
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Old Feb 5th 2017, 12:17 pm
  #32  
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Default Re: Japan

Just because it's western doesn't mean you should avoid it. The Japanese have these bakeries that look "western" but upon closer inspection the baked goods have a slightly different and unexpected twist to them. Check out Yamanote in Dubai to see what I mean.

Be sure to get the curry donut. Japanese cheesecake is also delicious, it's light and airy. They use far less sugar in their sweet goods

Browse through the local convenience markets and the range of flavours are fascinating. And the quality much better than comparable crap processed food.
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Old Feb 5th 2017, 12:43 pm
  #33  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
Just because it's western doesn't mean you should avoid it. The Japanese have these bakeries that look "western" but upon closer inspection the baked goods have a slightly different and unexpected twist to them. Check out Yamanote in Dubai to see what I mean.

Be sure to get the curry donut. Japanese cheesecake is also delicious, it's light and airy. They use far less sugar in their sweet goods

Browse through the local convenience markets and the range of flavours are fascinating. And the quality much better than comparable crap processed food.
Yes this is what I was referring to when I mentioned their inventive interpretations of western cuisine: this is a more recent development I think. Alas, last time I was there was almost 10 years ago and these developments seemed to be picking up momentum (compared to 10 years previously when there was nothing much of this kind). In the meantime I have seen and heard a plethora of these kinds of crossovers making their way back out of Japan also. Anything involving dairy or baked goods is not from traditional Japanese cuisine but there seem to be lots of these innovations now, and all intrinsically interesting and different from the originals. Think Panko breadcrumbs for example as well.

Not liking seafood is going to constrain the experience but the seafood in Japan is so great that it might change your perspective, Scamp. Except maybe the slimy raw octopus nestling in the middle of the bento box...
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 3:52 am
  #34  
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Default Re: Japan

I mean - I couldn't think of anything worse than bowling around Japan having steak and chips every night because of a lack of alternative.

Now, I'm sure it won't be an issue, I just think I may find some selections limited because of my own fussiness. But sod it, I generally get on and try stuff regardless. I ate mushrooms in Thailand....
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 3:58 am
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Default Re: Japan

Have a curry dam.

Look it up.

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
I mean - I couldn't think of anything worse than bowling around Japan having steak and chips every night because of a lack of alternative.

Now, I'm sure it won't be an issue, I just think I may find some selections limited because of my own fussiness. But sod it, I generally get on and try stuff regardless. I ate mushrooms in Thailand....
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 4:12 am
  #36  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
Have a curry dam.

Look it up.
Saw it on a blog a few nights ago. I'm absolutely, 100% all over it.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 4:44 am
  #37  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
I mean - I couldn't think of anything worse than bowling around Japan having steak and chips every night because of a lack of alternative.

Now, I'm sure it won't be an issue, I just think I may find some selections limited because of my own fussiness. But sod it, I generally get on and try stuff regardless. I ate mushrooms in Thailand....
A week of Wagyu is very doable.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 4:52 am
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by Millhouse View Post
A week of Wagyu is very doable.
Good point. I shall definitely sample some.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 5:29 am
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Default Re: Japan

If you've never had wagyu be aware that it tastes like grilled butter.

I wasn't impressed.

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
Good point. I shall definitely sample some.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 5:33 am
  #40  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
If you've never had wagyu be aware that it tastes like grilled butter.

I wasn't impressed.
You can't get a burger in the mall without them ramming the fact it's wagyu down your throat.

I've had a couple of nice wagyu steaks but the best I've had recently was Argentinian. Absolutely mega.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 5:42 am
  #41  
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Default Re: Japan

Gaucho, eh?

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
You can't get a burger in the mall without them ramming the fact it's wagyu down your throat.

I've had a couple of nice wagyu steaks but the best I've had recently was Argentinian. Absolutely mega.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 6:23 am
  #42  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by DXBtoDOH View Post
Gaucho, eh?
Nope, it was at the Rotana in Abu Dhabi. Just checked and I went for the Australian in the end. We had Argie wine - my mistake.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 6:29 am
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by Scamp View Post
Nope, it was at the Rotana in Abu Dhabi. Just checked and I went for the Australian in the end. We had Argie wine - my mistake.
Blue Grill?
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 6:43 am
  #44  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by Brains1983 View Post
Blue Grill?
Rodeo Grill, Beach Rotana - really, very good.
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Old Feb 6th 2017, 6:46 am
  #45  
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Default Re: Japan

Originally Posted by Millhouse View Post
A week of Wagyu is very doable.
Might be a tad expensive. There's a chain (don't know if it exists in Kanto, but certainly in Kansai) called A1, which is "reasonable" and excellent.

Random things keep coming to mind: I fully endorse the robotayaka (nothing to do with robots, before someone asks) and curry doughnuts; chou cream are also wonderful (if you have a sweet tooth), but a serious omission was unagi. Most westerners turn their noses up at eel, but seriously: get a recommendation for an unagi restaurant, you'll be amazed.

Foods I'd give a miss: huge crabs -- virtually tasteless and very expensive: fugu -- ditto; most "western" food, although some of their home-grown burger joints are good (eg Mos Burger); natto; whale.

And some others to try (not coz they're strange, coz they're delicious): omosubi (available from every convenience store, but be sure to follow the instructions for unwrapping); ikura and uni (at your kurukuru sushi); gyouza (how come nobody's mentioned gyouza yet -- although it's basically Chinese, the Japanese have added their own twist; its just more-ish); chanko nabe; a train-station bento (the ones on the shinkansen are excellent, but they're cheaper and you get more choice if you buy before you board). The big department stores all have a Food Court (usually basement if its adjacent to the supermarket -- which itself is worth a visit or two), and they're excellent; most restaurants will serve a teishoku (aka setto), meaning a set meal.
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