After visiting 桜島 Sakurajima, we returned to 鹿児島 Kagoshima in search of the famous and popular 黒かつ亭 中央駅本店 Kurokatsutei Kagoshima-Chuo Eki Honten for some delicious とんかつ Tonkatsu Deep Fried Pork Cutlet for dinner (they have another branch 黒かつ亭天文館店 Kurokatsutei Tenmonkan Branch in Kagoshima and one branch 黒かつ亭東京駅店 Kurokatsutei Tokyo Eki Branch in Tokyo Station).
黒豚 (Kurobuta) “Black Pork” refers to the skin colour of the animal, and are Berkshire pork that were originally imported to Kagoshima about 400 years ago.
We opted for the 上ロースかつ定食 Premium Loin Set (¥1,560) and 黒かつ亭定食 Loin & Fillet Set (¥1,380).
While the meat was juicy and had a good bite, we found the breaded crust to be a tad too oily. However, the generous amount of cabbage certainly helped to give it a refreshing lift. Surprisingly, we both felt that the simple カツカレー Curry Rice with Pork Cutlet that we found at 霧島神宮 Kirishima Jingu to be far more delicious. Perhaps the curry rice far exceeded our low expectations because it was relatively away from Kagoshima; while we had much higher expectations of the pork cuisine by restaurants located right in Kagoshima.
|黒かつ亭 中央駅本店 Kurokatsutei Kagoshima-Chuo Eki Honten (Main Store):
- Location: 〒890-0053 鹿児島県鹿児島市中央町16-9 中原ビル1F, Nakahara Building 1F, 16-9, Chuocho, Kagoshima-shi, Kagoshima-ken, Japan (Google Maps)
- Directions: 5 min walk from East Exit of JR 鹿児島中央駅 Kagoshima-Chuo Station
- Website: www.kurokatutei.net (Facebook)
- Hrs: 11am – 3:30pm, 5pm – 10:00pm daily
We have always enjoyed the soup at 塚田農場 Tsukada Nojo in Singapore, and now we had the chance to try out at the 宮崎 Miyazaki outlet where it all started 🙂
Apparently, in 宮崎 Miyazaki, they use only free-range, home-bred domestic chicken. Only selected farms that have passed Miyazaki Prefecture’s stringent production conditions are allowed to breed this specific type of chicken, which produces leaner meat with well-marbled fat. Reading the description, we were more than ready to try all kinds of chicken cuisine 😀
Other than beef (still drooling from the unforgettable 宮崎牛 Miyazaki Beef), Miyazaki is also famous for chicken; in particular, チキン南蛮 Chicken Nanban and 焼き鳥 Yakitori Chicken are the 2 must-try dishes here.
丸万 Maruman was one of the highly-recommended restaurants to try the 焼き鳥 Yakitori Chicken, and we went to the 本店 original store to check it out.
We were led to the rooms upstairs because it was full downstairs (which also meant we were not able to see the chef in action 😦 ), which involved removal of shoes, and while there was only Japanese menu available, an English-speaking staff pointed to us which was the most popular dish, and also tried to explain what certain dishes were when we enquired.
It was a cold day, and we were resting from our excursion yesterday while craving for something soupy. A hot bowl of udon definitely seemed like an excellent idea for lunch 🙂
きっちょううどん Kitchou Udon is a chain of udon restaurants all over 宮崎 Miyazaki and one happened to be near our hotel along 橘通 Tachibanadori.
English pictorial menu was available, so ordering of udon was not an issue, but there were also some fried items available at the ordering counter, with only description in katakana. No worries, you can just pick whatever that looked interesting 😛
We opted for the 肉スぺシャル Niku-Special Udon (¥750), and added メンチカツ Menchi Katsu (¥120), which is ground meat with chopped onions breaded and deep-fried, イカ天 Ika Tempura (¥100), which is squid deep-fried with tempura batter.
The squid had a really addictive chewy texture, and the meat katsu was quite juicy. While the udon was slightly too soft for our preference, the entire bowl was filled with delicious ingredients (and lots of spring onion!). It was a meal that definitely warmed us up 🙂
- Location: 〒880-0001 宮崎県 宮崎市 橘通西3-3-27 宮崎アートセンタービル1階Miyazaki Art Centre Ground Floor, 3 Chome-3-27 Tachibanadori-nishi, Miyazaki-shi, Miyazaki-ken 880-0001, Japan (Google Maps)
- Directions: 13 min walk from West Exit of 宮崎駅 Miyazaki Station
- Website: www.kitchouudon.com/shop/03/ (Unofficial Facebook)
- Hrs: 6am – 3am
Other than chicken, Miyazaki is also famous for its high quality 宮崎牛 Miyazaki Beef, and we really really wanted to try it!
We had read about the dinner buffet at 焼肉レストランAPAS Yakiniku Restaurant APAS (a very popular chain of restaurants specializing in 宮崎牛 Miyazaki Beef), which required reservations to be made in advance. Hence, we had popped over here the night before to make enquiries and to make reservations.
The 120-min 食べ飲み放題 Eat-And-Drink-All-You-Can dinner buffet was ¥6,000 (~S$70) for men and ¥5,500 (~S$65) for ladies, and would be even more value-for-money if you could drink a lot; shochu, wine, whiskey, beer, etc, were all part of the free-flow drinks menu.
It is said that チキン南蛮 Chicken Nanban, originated from 延岡市 Nobeoka City in 宮崎県 Miyazaki Prefecture. More precisely, it all started from 直ちゃん Naochan, a small restaurant which serves its fried chicken breast marinated with Nanban vinegar, without tartar sauce. Nowadays, there are also restaurants that use chicken thigh meat instead, as it is more juicy and tender.
The first restaurant that started serving this dish with tartar sauce was said to be おぐら Ogura, within 宮崎市 Miyazaki City. So it seemed fitting that our first dinner in Miyazaki would be here 🙂
We headed for おぐら本店 Ogura Honten, which was located in a little alley. The restaurant looked like a little cottage, and it was fairly quiet at 6.30pm on a Sunday (and soon we realised that Miyazaki was basically rather quiet all the time throughout our stay :P)
お好み焼「美津の」Mizuno Okonomiyaki was opened in 1945, just after World War II, making it the oldest お好み焼き Okonomiyaki restaurant in 大阪 Osaka.
We were there just before 5pm, and there was already a queue.
The staff would offer the menu (Chinese and English menus available) to the customers and take their orders while still in the queue. You are not allowed to add orders once you enter the restaurant, so choose wisely 🙂
The wait was bearable, and the queue moved rather fast.
We took the set (¥2105) which consisted of mini 山芋焼 Yamaimoyaki, and モダン焼 Modanyaki, which were the two very popular items here.
Thanks to Starhub, we had a 1-for-1 voucher, and decided to try out Takujo at Emporium Shokuhin, serving contemporary Japanese cuisine.
Emporium Shokuhin is this huge area in Marina Square ground floor that has a collection of fresh fish market (with fresh lobster from Hokkaido!), frozen meat market, groceries, and many restaurants all congregating together.
The restaurant was surprising quiet at 6:45pm on a Friday night (maybe the price put off many people). Even when we finished around 8:30pm, there were only 4-5 tables full.
Since it was 1-for-1, we opted for the Takujo 8-course Signature Dinner Set ($128++), where we would get to try both grilled fish options 🙂
The menu was surprisingly in English only though.
Our foodie journey today brought us to the world’s first Michelin-starred ramen eatery, Tsuta, which opened it’s first overseas outlet at Pacific Plaza (it has since opened another outlet at 18 Tai Seng).
We were here during late afternoon, and the queue was fairly manageable. Since we were still rather full, we did not mind the 20-minute wait, especially when there were seats available in the queue.
We thought that this place had a rather efficient system, where we could just place our orders and pay via the kiosk at the entrance of the restaurant, before the staff brought us to our seats, where we could watch the chefs in action.
Food was served rather quickly too, and we managed to finish our meal in a jiffy too.
We visited the Japan Rail Cafe in December 2016, and had return a few more times ever since!
This place aims to be a one-stop station, where customers can enjoy not only food and drinks (with monthly specials focusing on selected regions in Japan), but also do some quick shopping at the small retail section, as well as obtain travel information and purchase Japan Rail Pass (JR Pass) at the Rail Pass Counter.
It was particularly interesting to revisit, because of the monthly changes (Dec 2016 was on the Tohoku region), and we also enjoyed reading about the various Japan regions in the newsletter, that also served as a menu.
Free WiFi was also available, so we could do some quick browsing on the spot whenever we found something of interest, and wanted to find out more.