11 Oct 2014
Here’s my third answer to the list of questions in Stephanie Fox’s Travel Whispers Blogger Challenge:
3. If you could only eat the cuisine of one nationality forever more, which would you choose?
Tough question. There are so many delicious food cultures around the world. The USA, with its ribs and hush puppies, Italy’s pasta and pizza, France’s sumptuous dishes…
Just one? Japan, I think. So much variety, so beautifully presented. One of the best meals I ever had was in a tiny underground restaurant. A dozen diners, tops. The cook worked in a kitchen about two metres square, just a breath away from us. We watched him as he sliced and rolled our sushi platters, and then he turned to us, placed the dishes before us, and bowed.
Street food in a noisy market, exquisite cakes and tea beside the Philosophers’ Walk in Kyoto, hanami under the sakura with drunken Japanese businessmen widdling into the bushes, sozzled salarymen chowing down okonomiyaki – the “Japanese pizza”, breakfast buffets of barely identifiable but delicious morsels, beautifully presented bento boxes, rice cakes giftwrapped in a temple.
So much variety, so much taste, so artfully arranged. I could easily spend a lifetime sampling the many delights and never grow weary of Japanese food.
Have a Big Mac in a Japanese McDonalds, just to see how they do it – one Shinjuku restaurant was barely big enough for the counter, but it was five stories high. Just keep climbing till you find a seat.
And then dive into every tiny restaurant you can find. You’ll see plastic replicas of the food items on offer in the window, you’ll be greeted as you cross the threshold, the menu will be a puzzle, and you’ll have to master chopsticks, but you’ll love it!
For more on the Travel Whispers Blogger Challenge see: Go With Talia – someone who clearly knows how to swing a camera, wield a keyboard, and turn a phrase. Read her blog, and be there with her.