Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Hiroshima (Part 2)...

The girls at Hiroshima Castle

Okonomiyaki & beer... perfect combo!
Although there is a lot of history in Hiroshima, it also has delicious food!  We got okonomiyaki (pronounced O-Ko-no-MEE-ake).  It's a layered Japanese-style pancake made differently in each region of Japan.  There are so many different variations to this dish, it's reflected in it's name; "okonomi" means "to one's liking".  The dish is available all over Japan, but it is most popular in the west, particularly in Hiroshima and Osaka.  (guess Osaka will be my next trip)  Mine went a little like this... pancake layer, soba (buck-wheat) noodles, pork/shrimp/corn/garlic/cabbage mixed together, egg, okonomiyaki sauce, and finally topped off with green onions.  Trust me, I was a little skeptical at first, but it was surprisingly good!  I was a little too scared to try the squid, but I probably should have since it was so fresh.  Oh well, guess I need to make another trip back.  We enjoyed our okonomiyaki and beer picnic style sitting along the river listening to our own private concert.  There were some local Japanese teenagers on the other side playing the guitar and singing "Stand By Me" (yes - in English).  Kinda cool!

You can either make it yourself on your "skillet table" or
the chef willmake it for you.  Since it was my first time, we opted for
the chef to make it.  He's putting fresh slices of pork on it.

Locals rocking out to "Stand By Me"
Seafood pasta (fresh shrimp, clams, squid and scallops)
in white wine sauce... DELICIOUS!
For dinner we found this amazing little Italian cafe, Ristorante Mario, overlooking the Peace Park.  The owner was from Naples and the food was definitely authentic.  Probably the best Italian food I've had since I've been over in Japan!  The service even reminded me of Italy... slow and paced out so you can enjoy wine and company.  So that's exactly what we did; ate, drank and talked for a few hours!  (we definitely closed the place down)  Or as Kayla says, "we nurse our patients, not our drinks"!  I would recommend this restaurant to anyone who visits Hiroshima!

Standing in front of Ristorante Mario... the best
restaurant EVER!

I love this picture!  I have some mad skills taking jumping pics  :)
Hiroshima Castle in the background at night.

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