Jin Din Rou has a new shop on the East side near Burger Mania. The lunch special was udon mabo (dofu) with a choice of shumai or sholonpro (soup dumplings) for ¥1000. Not spicy enough and didn't warm up the noodles enough. Good shumai though.
I had read about Zoshigaya in some histories of Tokyo I've read recently. But I had never been to the neighborhood that is one kilometer from Ikebukuro. My first stop was Zoshigaya Cemetery, where several well known cultural and historical figures are at rest.
This is th egrave of writer Kafu Nagai. I was planning on visitng the grave of Natsumi Soseki as well, but got lost and was too tired and hot to go back and find it. I might go back on a cooler day and find it.
El Pato is an American style restaurant and bar in Koenji. Their burger is mighty fine, but it might be second best burger joint in Koenji-see Fatz's Burgers. However, they do have two types of Shiga Kogen craft beer (one of my favorite Japanese beer makers) on tap and outdoor seating.
Today's appetizers, four in total, were included in the tan tan men set, which was a bargain at ¥1200.
A small bowl of soup also accompanied the meal. There was a choice of four styles of tan tan men. I chose the first, which was unusual in that there was very little soup, but was very flavorful nonetheless.
The first tan tan men meal inspired by the "甘いから、辛いから" (from delicious to spicy) Brutus maagazine speical edition at the highly regarded Chinese restaurant in the Westin Hotel in Ebisu, Ryutenmon. It was excellent with handmade noodles and had some heat, but not cheap at ¥1900. It seems that Ryutenmon is or has been a Micheline one star restaurant, which might explain the price as well as the location.
Brutus magazine has a special issue devoted to "甘いから、辛いから" (from delicious to spicy) with profiles on restaurants with mabo dofu (spciy tofu), tan tan men (spicy noodle soup), and curry. The first stop on the list for me was Curry no Mise Shyaridesu in Nakano. I got the mutton keema curry, the shop's spiciest at ¥750. This was Japanese style curry shop so suffice to say I didn't think it was all that spicy.
Gaiton Tokyo is a Thai street stall style chicken rice (kaomangai) restaurant that has just opened on Meiji-dori near the Shibuya New South Exit.
It is a simple, but delicious meal that has the ambiance of a Bangkok street stall. Chicken rice, spicy dipping sauce, chicken stock soup served with fresh coriander on request for ¥750 and ¥50 for extra rice. Singha beer available. I'd like to see more one dish types of stall places here in Tokyo.
They roast their own coffee beans and have original cocktails and bottle craft beers. It has free wi-fi, but it is a very small space, which is the only drawback besides the location in opinion-I'm not a huge fan of the Nakano Broadway mall, which mostly has game and magna related merchandise and a sort of 60s worn out feel to the premises, perhaps more space like this would change that vibe.
Tsukemen at Tsuke Soba Sakuranba in Nakano. It was really tasty, I think I had the shio (salt) style soup with chicken (there are other choices such as shrimp and pork). So good that I think it rates in my Top 5 for Nakano so far...