Mogu Mogu Nippon | Indulging in Oniku no Osushi’s Matsusaka Beef Don in Asakusa

27.June.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

Asakusa is located in Tokyo and is home to many famous tourist and sightseeing spots such as Sensō-ji Temple and the Kaminarimon Gate. It’s also a place lined with restaurants serving up an array of gourmet dishes.

 

We have covered many popular cafés and local specialties in Asakusa in MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON. Today, we will take a look at a sushi restaurant called Oniku no Osushi which opened recently where customers can eat sushi served with Japanese wagyu beef. It is the first big name restaurant from the Gion district of Kyoto to arrive in the country’s Kanto region. Since opening its doors, it has been much-talked-about and has enjoyed the hustle and bustle of hungry customers.

The restaurant is about an 8-minute walk from Akasaka Station via the subway and just a 2-minute walk via Tsukuba Express. You’ll know the restaurant when you see it as the outside of it incorporates a wooden design. Inside, too, wooden planks and pillars decorate the interior.

 

Matsusaka beef is a brand of beef in Japan made from the meat of Japanese Black cattle that are reared under strict conditions in Matsusaka, Mie. At Oniku no Osushi, customers are able to eat this beef in the form of sushi marbled and with a rare texture.

I dined together with Chinese model and talent Etsuna. She loves eating out but this was her first time eating rare meat on sushi. We ordered the restaurant’s popular Oniku no Osushi platter and the Gyusen Don (served only at lunchtime).

Oniku no Osushi Platter (8 Pieces): ¥5,000

The meat sushi platter comes with eight pieces including two pieces each of lean beef, salted beef, roast beef, and fatty gunkan beef. Excluding the gunkan beef it’s recommended eating each piece from the left as pictured above. Everything is already flavoured so you can eat them as they are.

 

The gunkan beef is best enjoyed while it is still frozen so I started with that. The cold beef just melts as it enters you mouth. It tastes sweet and has a fatty texture to it. The egg yolk mixes together with the beef on your tongue and gives it an even smoother taste.

 

The meat of the lean beef, salted beef and roast beef sushi is soft and each is layered with refreshing grated lemon and daikon. When you bite into the succulent meat your taste buds are treated to the sweetness of the fat and the meats’ rich flavours. I was able to taste the distinct qualities of each type.

Gyusen Don (w/ Cold Miso Soup): ¥2,480

The Gyusen Don is served at lunchtime only. It contains Matsusaka Gyusen® flakes and Kyoto-style tsukemono pickled vegetables, condiments and bite-sized meat pieces. The presentation of the dish is beautiful! You add soy sauce to it and mix with the egg yolk, and it’s simple irresistible! We made sure to snap a final photo before tucking in.

The beef of this dish melts in your mouth just like the gunkan beef and blends well with the egg yolk to create a velvety flavour. The dish also has condiments and pickled vegetables too adding to the variety of tastes. If you add wasabi or ginger the flavours are elevated even further, especially when eaten with the Kyoto-style pickled vegetables which creates a spicy tang.

 

The miso soup that the dish is served with is also Kyoto-style. Wheat starch and pickled vegetables are added to the sweet white broth to create a mellow flavour that goes well with the dish.

Etsuna gave high praise to the dish too: “It was so delicious. I think there are still a lot of foreigners that don’t know about meat sushi yet, so I think it’ll get popular soon. It’s a bit pricey there are a lot of foreign travelers who want to eat tasty Japanese food, so I recommend it to them.”

 

Asakusa is famous for its takeaway food to be eaten while walking, but Oniku no Sushi serves up an Asakusa-exclusive gourmet experience too.

Steamed Rice & Meat: ¥500

If you’re walking around Asakusa and are feeling peckish, then you should go for steamed rice and meat (おにくの飯蒸し). It’s packed full of beefy flavour.

What did you think of this little Asakusa lunch trip? Of course, Oniku no Osushi has an evening slot for dinner too, so if you’d like to try some Matsusaka beef then be sure to pay a visit.

 

Writer: Sayuri Mizuno (MMN Editorial Department)

Model: 悦奈(Etsuna)

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  • Asakusa Bubble Tea Shop BOBA365 Reveals New Matcha Latte & Dorayaki

    04.March.2019 | FOOD

    BOBA365, a bubble tea shop which just opened in Asakusa in November last year, has announced it is releasing a new drink and dessert on March 1, 2019.

    Yaki Brûlée Matcha Latte – Regular Size ¥700 (Tax Included)

    The new Yaki Brûlée Matcha Latte is an upgrade of BOBA365’s most popular beverage, the Tapioca Matcha Latte Kiwami. It’s a combination of bitter matcha from Shizuoka Prefecture and milk. It has just the right amount of sweetness to create an even deeper flavour than the store’s original matcha latte. Matcha is said to be good for health and beauty, and so to make it even more delicious, BOBA365 has burnt the top of the drink like a crème brûlée. There are five layers of flavour to indulge in with just one sip.

    Thick Dorayaki Matcha Kiwami: ¥480 (Tax Included)

    The original Tapioca Matcha Latte Kiwami has also be turned into a delicious dorayaki dessert packed with a generous serving of cream laced with matcha from Shizuoka Prefecture.

     

    BOBA365 has announced it will release more new items in the near future, but for now enjoy the Yaki Brûlée Matcha Latte and Thick Dorayaki Matcha Kiwami.

  • TV Anime ‘Sarazanmai’ to be Set in Asakusa, New Story Details Revealed

    13.November.2018 | ANIME&GAME

    Sarazanmai is an upcoming TV anime series set to begin airing in April 2019. The series director Kunihiko Ikuhara appeared alongside Junichi Suwabe who voices Keppi at Animate Girls Festival 2018 which was held on November 10 and 11 where he unveiled details surrounding the story and setting.

    Kunihiko Ikuhara has wanted to create stories since he was a child. Today, he is a creative artist and anime director who has directed hit anime series such as Revolutionary Girl Utena (1997) and Mawaru Penguindrum (2011).

     

    During his talk, Ikuhara spoke about how he wanted to create a story on the legend of the kappa, a yokai of Japanese folklore that has webbed hands and feet and a shell on its back similar to a turtle. As he explained this, he also dropped that the story will be set in Asakusa, Tokyo. “[Asakusa is] next to the Sumida River. I wanted these young boys’ story to be in a place where one can feel life,” he commented.

    The theme of the story is “connecting.” We live in a world where we can connect to anyone at any time with a mobile phone, but there’s a lack of actually wanting to connect. “If we carry on connecting in this way, where would we end up? If we lose sight of connecting [with others], would it really become like that? Is connecting a necessity or not? These are things I wanted to explore,” explained the director.

     

    A radio show titled Purezanmai based on the anime series was also announced to begun airing in January 2019.

     

    Two important characters in the series, the police duo Reo Niiboshi voiced by Mamoru Miyano and Mabu Akutsu voiced by Yoshimasa Hosoya, also have their own Twitter account which they will be posting on frequently until March 31, 2019.

    Comment: Junichi Suwabe (Voices “Keppi”)

    “This anime is an original series so there’s a lot I can’t talk about, but what I can say is that since it begins in April 2019 it will straddle the new era*. The old era will go and a new one will come. Even though it will be very new for the new era, I think it will be a wonderful and nostalgic series. I hope people look forward to it.”

    *Translator’s Note: He is talking about the end of the Japanese Heisei Period which is set to end while the anime is airing.

    Comment: Kunihiko Ikuhara (Director)

    “Even now the staff are working diligently on the series. I hope to connect with everyone during this time where it’s hard to know what it means to connect and where we would end up if we did. Please look forward to Sarazanmai!”

     

  • Matcha Café Yanagi Chaya to Open Near Sensoji Temple in Asakusa

    24.June.2018 | FOOD / SPOT

    Shin Nakamise Shopping Street in Asakusa runs perpendicular to Nakamise Shopping Street, and it’s there that the new Japanese tea café Yanagi Chaya will open on July 6, 2018.

     

    Asakusa is one of Japan’s most famous tourist destinations and is packed with tourists from both inside and outside of Japan every single day. Yanagi Chaya will open nearby Sensoji Temple which is a significant sightseeing spot for tourists, hailing as the oldest temple in Tokyo. The café’s ideal location means that those strolling around Asakusa can pop in for drinks and desserts.

     

    The shop is positioned so it takes in a lot of light, so it’s nice and bright. It’s also spacious, giving it a welcoming vibe. Its simple wooden décor lets one feel at one with the warmth of nature while also being surrounded by that Japanese omotenashi, or ‘hospitable’ atmosphere.

    Uji Matcha Tiramisu – ¥600

    Uji Matcha Rice Flour Dumplings – ¥790

     

    The menu is packed full of matcha items. You could tuck into a boxed Uji matcha tiramisu which MACCHA HOUSE, another shop, is famous for and was even featured on news media. Or you could chew on some Uji matcha rice flour dumplings which are all individually handmade instore and made white syrup and a matcha paste created on site that mixes together strained bean paste and matcha. There’s plenty more on the menu too where that came from.

    Both the tiramisu and dumplings are something you’ll want a photo of. There’s also an original takeout matcha drink you can sip on which is made from a matcha called Tomo no Mori by Mori no Han who’ve been around since 1836. It’s served in Yanagi Chaya’s own bottles so you can take it around Asakusa with you as you explore the sites.

     

    Yanagi Chaya should be put on your list of places to visit in Asakusa. Enjoy yourself some delicious matcha sweets.

     

    ■Information

    Yanagi Chaya

    Address: Hashimoto Bldg. 1F, 1-30-6 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening: July 6, 2018

    Opening Hours: 10am-6pm (Last Orders 5pm)

    No Fixed Holidays.

    TEL: 03-5830-8317

    FAX: 03-5830-8318

    *All prices listed are pre-tax.

     

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  • Chawanmushi Recipe: Savoury Dessert Made With Carrots, Cream Cheese & Mirin

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    Together with soy sauce and miso, mirin is a fundamental condiment in the Japanese kitchen and for many recipes for Japanese food. It’s a sweet rice wine that has lower alcohol content and higher sugar content when compared to sake, adding a sweet flavour to dishes.

     

    Today, we’re taking a look at a recipe that uses “Mikawa Mirin,” a brand of mirin made from high quality rice, to make carrot and cream cheese chawanmushi. Chawanmushi is a savoury egg custard dessert eaten in Japan.

     

    Carrot & Cream Cheese Chawanmushi

    Chawanmushi is made using mirin and has a smooth texture to it as well as a subtly sweet flavour. It’s the perfect accompaniment to a hot summer’s day.

     

    Ingredients (Serves 1)


    ●Chawanmushi
    60g carrots
    240ml dashi
    20ml soy sauce
    120ml Mikawa Mirin
    8g sugar
    18g cream cheese
    1 egg

     

    ●Okra-an
    Okra
    30ml dashi
    0.5g salt
    3ml Mikawa Mirin

     

    Method

    We will start by making the chawanmushi.

    1. Slice the carrots and boil them until they become soft.

    2. Add the soy sauce, sugar, and lots of mirin and cook through the dashi.

    3. Cook for approximately 20 minutes on a medium heat, then cool with ice. Add the cooled carrots, cream cheese, and 20ml of the dashi into a blender and bend.

    4. Add the egg to the mix and steam the mix for 12 minutes on a medium heat.

     

    While the chawanmushi is cooling, we’ll make the okra-an.

    5. Mix together the okra-an dashi, mirin, and salt together. Add watered potato starch and thinly sliced okra. Leave to cool in the refrigerator.

    6. Add the okra-an to the cooled chawanmushi and tuck into your cute two-layered dessert.

    Carrot & Cream Cheese Chawanmushi

    The dessert is an enjoyable mix of the sticky texture from the okra-an and smooth chawanmushi. It’s great to have not only at lunch or dinner, but at home parties with friends too.

     

    –How’s the taste?


    Misa Kimura: “It works really well with the mirin. The chawanmushi is like a sweet treat. It’s super easy to make too, so I think I’ll be making it at home!”

     

    Mirin is indispensable to any Japanese cupboard and can be used in many ways, whether it be a classic Japanese dish or a dessert like this one.

    Mikawa Mirin 700ml: ¥1,122 (Tax Included)

    This authentic brand of mirin is made using a traditional method of Japanese brewing which blends in the delicious taste of rice. It’s so delicious that you just want to drink the whole bottle. A high quality mirin, it has a distinct sweetness, colour, and texture. It has a rich flavour, and the taste of the rice elevates the flavours of its ingredients.

     

    Mikawa Mirin Official Website: http://www.mikawamirin.jp/
    Official Online Store: http://mikawamirin.jp/product/product_step1.php?m=n
    Official Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mikawamirin

     

    Recipe


    This recipe was conceived by ITEMAE, a famous restaurant serving Japanese cuisine that is listed in the Michelin Guide.

     

    Model: Misa Kimura
    Photographer: Haruka Yamamoto

  • Inari Sushi Restaurant Tsurigitsune to Open in Osaka International Airport’s North Terminal

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    Tanto Otabeyasu | ¥930 (Tax Included) *Served 6:30-10:00

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    Hitokuchi Tatsuta

    Rice Chicken Tatsuta

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    SAKEICE is an ice cream shop that offers a new kind of ice cream experience, combining Japanese sake and alcohol together with the frozen treat. The shop opened in Akusaka, Tokyo in March this year.

     

    However, due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the store has had to close temporarily. SAKEICE wants to cheer people up during these turbulent times with their ice cream, and has therefore announced the launch of a crowdfunding campaign so they can set up a website where people can order ice cream in Japan and have it delivered to them.

     

    I tried out their ice cream

    Otokoyama / Nihonshu Ice

    SAKEICE’s ice cream is laced with lots of Japanese alcohol. I tried the Otokoyama and the Nihonshu Ice, the latter of which is an original ice cream flavour exclusive to SAKEICE. They both contains around 4% alcohol. I were curious exactly how they would taste.

     

    I started with the Nihonshu Ice. The moment the ice cream hits your tongue, your taste buds are met with its smooth texture, and your nose is filled with the full bodied flavour of nihonshu. The velvety texture on your tongue as it melts is to die for. The Otokoyama has a refreshing kick to it when compared to the Nihonshu Ice. It’s creamy, but the aftertaste is refreshing, so we recommend it for people who aren’t a fan of sweet treats. Both are sure to leave you feeling satisfied, and maybe a little flushed afterwards.

     

    These ice creams contain alcohol, so keep that in mind when coming here with minors, kids, pregnant women, or if you’re driving.

     

    They have non-alcoholic flavours too!

    Matcha / Cherry Blossom

    Of course, they have non-alcoholic options too. I tried out the matcha and cherry blossom flavours.

     

    The matcha one has an irresistible bitterness layered inside the sweetness. You get that real rich matcha taste too. The cherry blossom ice cream is a cute light pink colour and has a subtle sweetness to it. If you don’t like alcohol then you’ll definitely want to try one of delights.

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