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Warai: An Osaka speciality – okonomiyaki
Another Osaka speciality is okonomiyaki. These are often described as Japan’s answer to pizza, but we found them to be more like omelette. The base for the dish is a batter made with flour, eggs, grated yam and shredded cabbage. Various ingredients are added to this to give the different flavours, just as you add toppings to a pizza or fillings to an omelette. These can be seafood, meat (usually thinly sliced pork), vegetables or cheese. In Osaka the ingredients are all mixed together before grilling, while in Hiroshima, where the dish is also a major culinary tradition, they are cooked in layers. The okonomiyaki are topped with a special sauce (similar to Worcestershire sauce but thicker) and sometimes other toppings are added – we had dried fish flakes (bonito) at the table to add ourselves, and some of the options on the menu had salad leaves on them too.
Favorite Dish: Okonomiyaki are traditionally mixed and grilled on a hot plate at the table by the diner – you order your fillings of choice which are brought separately to the batter for you to mix to taste and cook. But in some places they come ready-made, and Warai, where we enjoyed this meal, is one such. We had tables upstairs which had a large hot plate in centre but this is just intended to keep the okonomiyaki hot as you eat. It is a good place for your first okonomiyaki meal therefore as you don’t need to wonder what the finished dish is supposed to look like!
My okonomiyaki, with a filling of pork and squid, was delicious, though I'd have welcomed more squid (I found just three pieces!). Chris had a similar one but with pork and shrimp. They were very filling and tasty – one of my favourite of the various Japanese delicacies we tried on this trip. With two beers each our bill was around 4,000¥. And if you don’t fancy okonomiyaki there are other dishes too including noodles of various types.
Next tip: a day trip to Hiroshima
Mangetsu Nishi Nakajima Okonomiyaki, Osaka, Japan!: The BEST Okonomiyaki in Osaka! AMAZING Sauce!
I've tried lots of Japanese food in my life, but Mangetsu Okonomiyaki has to be one of the BEST I've ever tasted. They have so many delicious original recipes, and one of my hands down favorites, is their Okonomiyaki Original Sauce! This sauce tingles and tantalises your taste buds to the point you can't stop eating the food that's covered in it! Yummy! Once you've tasted something so delicious, words cannot express how good it actually is! You have to try it for yourself!
The atmosphere is very upbeat, lively, and welcoming by the staff staff! The entire experience we had there certainly topped our visit to Osaka. The price of the food was quite reasonable, and the location was very convenient from where we were staying.
Favorite Dish: The Okonomiyaki (Japanese Pancake/Pizzza), Yaki Soba (Fried Noodles), Kimuchi Tofu and Mangetsu Salad were fantastic! The Mangetsu Original Sauce was something that I will never forget! I only wish they sold it in small bottles so I could take some home with me!
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Mizuno Okonomiyaki: Mizuno Okonomiyaki - One place to avoid!
Mizuno Okonomiyaki in Dotonbori, Osaka (which has no English signage but can be recognized by its grey circular shopfront sign) was without doubt the worst dining experience we've had in Osaka and Japan as a whole. While Mizuno came with a reputation, we found the service and attitude of the staff absolutely abysmal. We waited 20 minutes to be seated, which is not a problem, but when we were seated, they allowed us to order a four course dinner without warning us they were closing in half an hour. They then started cooking the food at a breakneck pace and with complete disregard for hygiene (at one point our server stuck his unclean fingers into the egg to remove some loose shell - the same fingers that moments before we noticed he used to collect money from a departing guest).
As we could not eat the food as fast as it was being cooked, it was left to burn on the hot plate. When we said we wanted to be served at a more reasonable pace, they gave up cooking it in front of us. Instead, they pre-cooked the food and served it to us cold, thus defeating the object of eating there. Evidently, it was more important to them that they left work at their appointed hour than make sure guests were served hot food and given sufficient time to eat it. When we asked to speak to the manager, we were refused this small courtesy and told rather rudely that Japanese people would not complain about this, so neither should we. For JPY5,200, I suggest grabbing a just-as-tasty street-side okonomiyaki anywhere in Dotonbori for JPY300-400, where you will no doubt get better, more friendly and insult-free service, and putting the rest towards a proper Japanese dining experience, of which there are many to be found in Osaka. In short, don't waste your money or time in Mizuno Okonomiyaki.
Fugetsu: Such variety
The food was lovely and so filling and although it may have appeared fast food, it was great that my pal could cook on our table.
Just meant that we could chat as the food was being cooked, eat at our leisure as the food was kept warm.
Favorite Dish: Hard to describe okonomiyaki as a Westerner, but was kinda, egg, noodles, lettuce with a sweet / savoury sauce on top.
Can't explain it any more as my mouth is beginning to water with just the thought. "I want some and I want it now!!"
Tilt your head a little to the left and you will be able to see the picture of my dinner guest cooking this great dish ;-)
Chibo: Fancy yourself as the chef??
This place was fast, cheap and the food was delicious. The waiters/waitresses give you the choice of either cooking it yourself or letting them do the cooking (to cook for yourself make sure that you are handy with the little flipper that they give you. It is harder than it looks!). I recommend the pork and cheese okonomiyaki!!
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All serving the same thing... Find one with a cool sign?
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