Japan Eats

Greasy Spoons (and Chopsticks): Gyudon Taro

greasyarticleimage copy“But Nick, baby, how could you do it?”

Hot water welled up in the dame’s big brown eyes.

“You wouldn’t catch it if I rolled it on the floor over to you, dollface. Let it go; stop askin’ me questions.”

“But Nicky, darling, I’m worried about you. It’s just not like you.”

“Don’t you think I know that, sweetheart? I’ve got an independent streak to make George Washington blush, but sometimes things ain’t so black and white.” Read more

Greasy Spoons (and Chopsticks): Musashiya

greasyarticleimage copySinatra can have New York or Chicago. For old Nick, nothing sings of home like the chants of the yaki-imo hawker or the tofu kid of Tokyo and the sweetest part of that tune is the din of Shinbashi. Show me a man who knows a better place to be a man and I’ll show you a sucker.

Good, cheap eats are my game and walking out of Tokyo’s oldest station and into the stream of high lifes, low lifes, and no lifes that makes up this miasma of opportunity is no less a thrill than having some done up dame cross my threshold asking for help with her hands full of Suntory and Seven Stars.

Of all the greasy chopsticks to be tried in Tokyo, one above all takes the prize from bigger, better-known, and quirkier joints in their thousands: Read more

Greasy Spoons (and Chopsticks): Waseda-no-Bentoya (Wase-Ben)

greasyarticleimage copyOld Nicky’s a classy guy. Classy like the swinging casino for Chinese tourists in Pyongyang, when the best in rhinestone-studded Bolex watches and shiny, double-breasted rayon suits mix with a bit of the real thing so’s not even Sam Spade himself could tell the difference.

Classy like the green MOS Burger,  instead of the regular red one.

Most of the time, there’s even time and money enough for stools and napkins, if not chairs with backs and printed menus for each table.

Sometimes, though, even old Nicky’s on the run. And sometimes even old Nicky, classy guy that I am, just wants as much dough of the eatin’ kind for as little dough of the spendin’ kind as I can get.

And that means the best ambience in town: Take-Out. Read more