Japan 2015 Day 5 – Shibuya

The day has come. I am going to share my Shibuya experience now. This day felt like the culmination of all the bad things waiting to happen. First, I think we were both tired from the back to back Disney trips which included all day walking so we weren’t ready for this day. Well, at least I wasn’t ready. I also wore the wrong shoes which made for an even worse shopping trip, my feet hurt from early in the day which put me in a bad mood. No separate food post, all in one post – I apologize ahead of time for all the pics all at once.


Breakfast was from a cute little bakery.


150525-03I had a Pesto Shrimp with Cheese Toast with a cup of Iced Coffee. I like Japan’s iced coffee, they serve it with liquid sugar and cream, we should have more liquid sugar here to use.

After breakfast, we did some dollar shopping at Daiso and CanDo. You know me and dollar stores, now I had bags of stuff to lug around from the morning. Then we decided to grab some lunch and found a Genki Sushi. I just had to see what the Japan version had to offer! No regrets here. Very efficient service and everyone single seat has their own ordering screen. Their menu is way cheaper than ours (no spicy tuna, sorry guys) and very clean!








150525-164 Different Preparations of Squid – delicious!

150525-17Uni – not good.


150525-19Of course I always order the weird thing at each restaurant. They had a cheeseburger nigiri…lol. I mean the burger patty doesn’t even fit on the rice. It was delicious!


150525-05Famous Hachiko Statue. I wish this statue was situated in a better place. I get that it needs to be near the subway station he used to wait at but I wish it wasn’t placed in the smoking area. Just doesn’t do him justice, you know? Get plenty people trying to take pictures…and plenty of smokers. I think you can imagine the chaos.

150525-06Don Quijote in Japan. Hahaha very crowded and very narrow aisles.


150525-08Are these not the cutest?? They were selling these at Loft and I was SO tempted to buy one. But I knew I would never be able to put this together myself so I decided to save my money. I would buy this ready-made, for sure.

So here comes the worst part of the day. We had to grab dinner and I looked up various places on Yelp and decided on Ton-Chang. It took a while to find them because they are hidden in a big building upstairs but we finally did! We walked up the stairs and was greeted by a host in front behind this little counter. I asked if they had an English menu. They did. We got seated and there were only two ladies dining in the entire restaurant. They kept talking to us saying something but we didn’t quite get it, we finally understood that the chairs were barrels that opened up for our bags. Nifty.

So we sit down and start looking through the menu and they start setting up all the sides and the grill. We decide to order a pork set to share. Oh by the way, this is one of those Korean BBQ joints. As we’re waiting, I hear the wait staff talking to one another in Korean. So…the staff are all Korean people. She comes over and bends down in front of me and takes our order, speaking only in Japanese. Okay fine, we point to the set and figure that’s it. She then asks us a question which we both don’t understand. We both say we don’t understand and this girl doesn’t even try to help us understand. As a person who worked in customer service, I would always attempt to help a customer understand. She could have easily pointed to something in the ENGLISH menu to help us understand but she just kneeled there, staring at us. Her face was emotionless but rude, it’s so hard to explain. Finally she excuses herself and decides to help the other table to cook.

It’s funny because the things she says to us in Japanese are definitely in the polite format but with the rudest and coldest tone. As she’s helping the other table, I watched as a girl comes into the restaurant and returns something to the manager behind the counter (previously mentioned him as a host) and well, he’s Korean too because brada starts yelling AND swearing at her in Korean. Seriously. I couldn’t believe my eyes or ears. The girl looks taken aback by it but I think she might have been a worker, who knows. It was all so uncomfortable. Then the waitress comes back to our table and kneels down again and asks the same dang question again. Kneels there and stares at us as we say we don’t understand. I ask if anyone knows English. She makes an X with her arms and says no. What were our options then? I was STEAMING mad. I just felt like all her actions were so deliberate and since she refused to help us, we just left. She was completely fine with that. She turned off the stove and grabbed the food to put back (which I can only assume they would serve again). I don’t think I have ever wanted to slap someone as much as I did with her. If you sat there and experienced her purposefully rude behavior, you would never want to go there. The fact that they have an English version of their menu shows that they should have been able to service us. What is the point otherwise? God, that was the single most terrible restaurant experience I have ever had. So glad to write this one last time and get it over with. I did end up writing an e-mail to their company, no response, of course. So I would highly recommend NOT going there. Here’s the dinner I ended up with after a long terrible day.

150525-20Yes, cup noodle. Curry cup noodles and it was delicious. Even Japan’s cup noodle is premium, the cheese and meat look and taste fresh – not obviously dehydrated. Day 6 is coming up! Started up kind of junk but definitely brightened up afterwards! Have a good one folks.

Dowon Chinese Restaurant – Honolulu, HI

This past week has been a week of eating out. School is out and parking has been much better so I’m more inclined to venture off-campus to grab lunch. I’ve got quite a bit of posts coming up, I’ll slowly try to get them going. Still resting, work has not gotten much slower so I haven’t had a lot of time to rest. My plan this weekend is to clean, rest and eat (duh).

New restaurant alert! Dowon replaced the former Jong Ga Korean Restaurant and I was very excited to give them a try. Another Chinese (Korean style) restaurant with jajangmyun (black bean noodles) for me to try! There are two on the island that offer good options and I believe this is the third. As I walked in and dined there, the restaurant was filled with Koreans. That’s a good sign. So how was the food? Very good! The black bean noodle sauce they have here is much milder but I enjoyed it. Their black bean sauce is also more watery which I wasn’t a huge fan of, but if you want at thicker sauce, just get the other one – I want to say it’s called kanjangmyun but I probably butchered that. It’s just like jajangmyun but with a thicker/saltier sauce.

Let’s get to the pictures!

150524-01Yes, it’s a Korean style Chinese Restaurant. Usually it’s easy to tell these restaurants because they usually characterize their places as Northern Chinese Restaurants. But fear not, this is it!

150524-02The three normal sides dishes for jajangmyun. From top to bottom: sliced raw yellow onions with black bean paste, pickled daikon (takuan) and nicely soured kimchee. The raw onion with black bean paste is commonly served with the jajangmyun, I don’t get why people enjoy this. But I did eat it and of course I had raw onion breath all afternoon. It’s an interesting side dish.






Tangsuyuk (Sweet and Sour Crispy Pork). You can get this with beef or pork, we decided to go traditional with the pork. This is the entree people usually order with black bean noodles. I think it’s a great entree to get because the noodles are in such a dark and rich sauce, the sweet and sour pork really help to cut into the richness of the meal. You never know what kind of pieces you will get with deep fried meat but this was wonderful. The sauce was definitely more sweet than sour and the pieces were crispy and light, the meat was tender and delicious! I would recommend this!

150524-08Jajangmyun! So delicious. Sorry I don’t have more pictures of this because I basically scarfed it down after this picture was taken. The noodles were cooked perfectly, the sauce was mild but not bland. I’m excited to give this place a try again, I’d like to try the jjamppong (spicy seafood noodle) next time too. They may want to rework their menu, the noodles are on page 1 and it’s only in Korean or Chinese. The rest of the menu has English with it. Also, when you order the jajangmyun – they will ask you if you want regular or seafood. I just go with regular because it’s cheaper and really…what difference will I taste under all this sauce? That’s just me.

Vons Chicken – Kalihi, HI

Hi folks. Yes, I survived this past week. It was a tough one. A funeral for my grandma, my final paper that was due Wednesday night (which I had a hard hard time writing – got it in an hour before it was due), a big division party I planned lead on. Needless to say, I’ve been resting a LOT. I would have taken vacation on Friday if I didn’t have something big to do at work. My brothers are leaving for China on Tuesday for over two months, gonna be tough. I love them as much as if they were my own so it’s going to be difficult without them around for so long. Summer opens up a few possibilities! I don’t plan on taking classes so I should have more time to do other things…like more recipes! I’ll try to get some more out for you folks. Give me a few more days before I get back into the full swing of blogging again. I hope you have been great.

Quick update today. Vons Chicken opened up in the Kalihi Palama Supermarket, they took over the old Tae’s spot right next to the Palama snackbar. I think Asians do chicken right so I definitely wanted to give them a try! I asked what their specialty was and they said that since it was my first time, I should try their Crispy Fried Chicken. Yes sir! They offer regular or hot, I asked for hot. He mentioned something about hot being just a sauce and I said okay, that’s fine! He mentioned it takes about 10 minutes, I think it’s more like 15 minutes so feel free to call ahead or put it in before walking around the store. It is $11.99 for a mini order and $20.99 for a full order. My mini order had 9 wings and drumettes altogether.


150517-02So how was the chicken? It was a good choice! Very tasty, moist and crispy. A light crispy, not hard. He forgot to give me the hot sauce and I didn’t realize until I got home. A little pricey but I think it’s worth it it. I would definitely return to try another flavor!

Japan 2015 – Random Japan Purchases

Quick post to show off some cute stuff I bought from Japan. It’s mostly pictures of the things I got from Natural Kitchen that I wanted to show Jalna. And anyone who wants to be a fan of their stuff!

150507-01All from Natural Kitchen – I might be missing a few things but the bulk is here!

150507-02Okay I lied, it’s not all just 100 yen stuff. This one was 500! But if we compare it to the price here ($15 – $20), me paying less than 5 bucks was a steal! And this one has much cuter colors!

150507-03I was there for the cherry blossom season so they had a lot of sakura stuff! Here is a sakura foam pot rest thingie…so you don’t burn your table tops!

150507-04Sakura Coasters

150507-05Ah, here are the Laurel scents I was raving about. One drop of Savon and Cherry each into my aroma diffuser and I am in zen mode for the night. My alien looking aroma diffuser is in the background, hehe.

150507-06Jalna, you’re gonna get a laugh out of this one. I found these in the dollar store for a dollar each. They don’t sell this kine here, only get the primary color/alphabet kine for kids. I HAD TO GET IT. So I bought 24 of these. YES, 24 of these dang foot long squares. I carried it all around Odaiba back to the apartment and had to stuff them into my suitcase. Everything fit! And these of course offered mucho cushion in my suitcase. And yes, you can see that I initially placed them with the grain facing all crazy ways. I did fix it so they are more wood looking now. I’m nuts yeah? No regrets though!

I-NABA – Moilili, HI

Hey folks! Sorry, gotta take a short break from blogging about Japan. Especially since the next post is going to be the angry one! Gotta put myself in a zen place until I finish my paper! It’s been so busy at work that I haven’t been able to request vacation time to work on my paper. Luckily my supervisor is very nice in allowing me to take last minute vacation time when I find free time to do so (which right now is NONE). We had a nice lunch today for the office, we celebrated Administrative Professional’s Day in a nice little restaurant. Then a lot of things happened at work and I got mad. Hahaha wish I could elaborate more but I can’t.

For this post, I am sharing a recent lunch at I-NABA. You folks ever been there? It’s an old school soba place on South King Street, they share the same lot as Baskin Robbins and Manabu’s. Great place and I heard they make their own soba noodles so they are great! If you like soba, you won’t regret it! Here are some pictures!

150505-01My friend got soba with natto. She loved it! She got it with the hot broth, you can choose hot or cold.

150505-02I got the special Mentaiko on grated yamaimo served with bonito in a cold broth. It was delicious. My other friend called yamaimo snot before I went out for lunch which was not pleasant as I ate it and remembered that. Hehe, I get what she meant though.

150505-03Here is the edamame rice that comes with the set. It tasted okay, a bit bland.

150505-04Small Order of Tempura. This was delicious! The batter is light and they fried it fresh so it tasted perfectly crispy. I loved it.

McDonald’s Seasoned Fries

Hi folks! Quick update for a late Sunday night. I’ve had quite a day. I headed to work to work on my paper. It was a lot of resting as opposed to writing but I feel a little bit better about the paper. I worked on my outline a bit so I have more of a direction of what to write. I really think this paper is going to come down to the wire and that’s terrible. Anyway, instead of flash drives, I send myself a copy of my paper on e-mail so I can’t lose it. Guess what I ended up doing? It was a nightmare come true, I sent the e-mail to a mailing list rather than to myself. I don’t even know how that happened! The e-mail address is nowhere near how my e-mail is spelled and it wasn’t like I was rushing to get this done. Sheesh. Luckily the mailing list is very small and I was notified by one of them tonight that I had done it. I immediately wrote back to everyone and apologized and asked them to delete it. There’s nothing bad in my e-mail or draft, just bad that I sent it to them!

Anyway, tonight I started prepping food for this week’s lunches. I was ENTIRELY too ambitious. I got a bag of that fake meat to hydrate and I wanted to try my hand at seasoning it with kalbi sauce to create a bibimbap. Well bibimbap includes a LOT of vegetables. I spent so much time slicing up vegetables and seasoning them to cook, it was crazy.

The meat came out okay but I think it got seasoned TOO much. I also wanted to make kimchee gyoza. I seriously am nuts. I made those by hand and cooked them too. I think the cooking and prep took about 3-4 hours tonight. I am tired. I give Korean people a lot of credit for their dishes, nothing but respect. So how am I going to leave this post? McDonald’s French Fries. Those things are already so good but I heard they had this shake and season thing right now so I had to try it!

150503-01It comes with it’s very own “shake” bag with the seasoning you choose inside. It’s very easy to do and the seasoning packets really latch onto the fries!

150503-02Here are the two seasonings we have in Hawaii. My favorite? I like the garlic parmesan over the zesty ranch. I definitely would like to get it again before it goes away! It’s for a limited time only. I think I heard Japan has a nori flavor. Of course they do, we need that here! Anyway, the seasoning comes free with an order of medium or large fries…or of course with the value meals. When I ordered it, I asked for the seasoning specifically. They don’t come automatically with the fries so make sure you ask!

150503-03Garlic Parmesan

150503-04Zesty Ranch