Tuesday, 28 October 2014

The Japanese Food Adventure - Day 14

Day 14 - Sausage, egg and bacon for breakfast, department store food halls and a good look around Koenji. 

Every morning in Koenji we had passed Denny's Restaurant on the way to the station. We wondered if they served breakfast, one way to find out.

They had a pretty decent breakfast menu and at 700 yen (about £4) it seemed like a bit of a bargain, just pick a side dish, main and drink. Strangely the side dishes were a cooked breakfast and the main dishes toast or pancakes.

This seemed like a good system which we had seen a few times now, when you need to order, ask for something or pay the bill simply press the bell and somebody comes over. The bell made a very loud "DING DONG" which seemed to cause all the other customers to look up, there was no being discreet at this place!

First some iced water arrived.

The coffee arrived next.

My wife went for the scrambled eggs with mushrooms and spinach.

I went for sausage bacon and scrambled eggs, the deal also included a side salad, a yogurt, toast, butter and jam. Very good value for money when you consider the coffee was included too!

The sausage and bacon were nothing special but the creamy scrambled eggs were really nice.

The sausage was really tiny as you can tell seeing it next to my glasses, a pretty generous serving of that amazing scrambled eggs though.

Not as chunky as the toast I had yesterday but pretty thick still. I didn't want to waste the jam so spread it over one piece of the toast, the other slice was a good base for the scrambled eggs.

This was the kebab shop directly below our room at the guest house. The chap working here kept us awake till the early hours shouting what sounded like "egg and sausage"
I had on a few occasions considered buying a kebab from him but was never hungry enough, one things for sure though.. Thank god for earplugs!

You can see the top of the guest house from the platform with the brown fence surrounding the roof terrace. Thankfully the trains stopped after midnight until around 5am.

Because of how noisy the guest house was we decided to book a room at a hotel in Narita Airport for our final night to ensure we got some sleep. We headed to Shinjuku to book seats onto the airport limousine bus ready for tomorrow. At Shinjuku we spotted a Hello Kitty shop, my wife bought a doughnut which came in a pretty cool box, the doughnut was really nice with a crispy chocolate edge!

This ice block was in the bag with the doughnut to ensure it didn't melt.

Many of the guide books had recommended checking out the department store food halls found in the basement for amazing food. It was around lunchtime so we decided to see what all the fuss was about and headed down to the basement. You can probably fill up quite nicely on all the samples being handed out in these food halls.

Straight away it was evident that the food being sold here was something a bit special, our mouths were watering.

These sausages caught my eye, I remembered where I had spotted them and continued looking around with every intention of returning to buy some.

The cake makers were clearly very proud of their creations, the windows surrounding their preparation rooms invited you to watch them at work.

I hadn't got too far before deciding to return for some of those sausages. They tasted amazing and contained a lovely blend of herbs, the texture on these was nice and firm.

My wife had bought something a bit special from the food hall for her lunch and it came in a nice bag!

Inside the bag was a Hello Kitty bento box complete with Hello Kitty chopsticks and stickers, a bargain at 1000 yen (about £6)

I watched in anticipation as my wife opened the lid to see what was inside.

Amazing! A selection of rice, egg, vegetables, chicken and fish eggs. Although stunning to look at my wife said it didn't really taste that special and she didn't like the fish eggs at all.

She did however love these gyoza dumplings bought from another deli counter.

My food hall bento box was really nice and contained a good selection for just over £4. The highlight was the prawn dumpling and chicken in batter coated in sweet and sour sauce.

I washed it down with a giant can of Mitsuya Cider, my favourite Japanese soft drink and found in vending machines all over Japan.

We ended up inside another massive department store, this one had a big model railway in the toy department which anyone could play with. I was quite tempted but everyone looked no older than 12 so I just watched.

We headed up to the department store roof garden, the skyline surrounding it was impressive and it was a lovely peaceful spot in this incredibly busy city.

Up on the roof garden was a doorway leading to the pet section, plenty of kittens for sale in here as well as fish and a selection of rodents.

I don't need to tell you about Clorets, I was handed a sample in the street though and did say I would be taking a photo of everything I ate in Japan!

Another department store and another food hall in the basement.

The food here looked a bit special too, I wasn't really feeling very hungry but no harm in looking.

This sushi looked delicious, it cost under £10 per box.

Lotus root featured in many bento boxes and here they were being sold by the bag.

What an amazing looking drink!

With Halloween getting closer the pumpkin pastries were available on the shelves of the bakery department.

We took a final walk through piss alley, it was much quieter than it had been last night. This place seems to only get really busy in the evenings.

These looked like the fish waffles I had eaten in Kyoto.

They we beautifully displayed in the window!

Individual cheese cakes, we had been after some of these the other day in Shinbuya.

They looked delicious so we bought two to try later.

We headed back to Koenji for the evening passing this impressive looking train on Shinjuku station.

The cheese cakes were so nice, I wish we had bought more of these really!

These were in the communal area of the guest house, I tried one but didn't fancy losing a filling so put them straight back.

With a room booked at the airport hotel tomorrow night we decided to spend our final night in Koenji. Perhaps there were parts of it we hadn't yet discovered?

This was certainly the case, we found this really long street that went on for ages that we hadn't yet spotted.

It was lined with no end of retro and vintage shops, each one unique and filled with really cool things.

It was along this street that I spotted Calpis Soda in a vending machine. This stuff was even nicer than Mitsuya Cider, a really smooth milky, vanilla flavoured drink.

The entire street and indeed many other streets we had walked along in Japan had speakers on the lamp posts. Music is played and it gives a sense of being in a movie as you walk the streets with a soundtrack in the background making it feel quite dramatic.

There were so many kitsch shops along this street, we spent ages having a good look inside them all.

Toys and gadgets from different eras could be found in every corner.

If you like My Little Pony then this was the place to shop!

Everything in this shop had cats on, my wife loved this place.

This was the Japanese restaurant we had been in a couple of times now, I loved the exterior and we were tempted to eat here again but decided to try somewhere different tonight.

These cakes looked amazing but we wanted something savoury so kept walking.

This place looked perfect and seemed really popular so we pulled up a crate and sat down.

The tables were constructed from crates too, simple but effective.

My wife ordered a mojito, I fancied a beer.

We shared a selection of yakitori, chicken skin and chicken with leek. I was well impressed but my wife thought the chicken skin wasn't crispy enough for her liking.

We also ordered some battered chicken, in a crispy batter with no bones this was sensational and one of the nicest things we had eaten during our time in Japan.

These Japanese noodles were pretty damn amazing too. I could see why this place was so popular and wished we had found it sooner, a real gem!

We decided to head to a place we had discovered on our first night, it sold delicious plum wine so we headed straight there.

On our first visit the chef had asked if I was in a band, when we returned they seemed delighted to see us again all bowing as we entered.

Another really popular place but having just eaten we only stayed for another plum wine and decided to call it a night.

The 7-11 was too tempting to pass on the way back though, I couldn't resist another banana wrapped in cream and cake.

These were our favourite chocolate treats so we bought another box.

My wife also bought a selection of Japanese sweets to bring home as gifts.

Click here for Day 15
Fruit for breakfast, an amazing lunch and back to the airport..

1 comment:

  1. Love that train in Shinjuko, art deco cool. A Denny's, I didn't know they were in Japan, certainly different to the American ones! And more pot stickers...I might have to make some tonight now, got me craving!