Monday, April 13, 2009
a slice of Italy in Tagawa?
Japan sure has an interesting relationship with Europe. The Western style restaurants that aren't desperately trying to be America are desperately trying to be Italy. Like Huis Ten Bosch (which wants to be the Netherlands), most of these Italian restaurants are far too shiny and pristine to be like the real thing, and rely on glass bottles of fake olive oil suspended from ceilings and wax produce for their authenticity. Most serve some variation of spaghetti (with seaweed and fried eggs) or pizza or the magic "doria," which is basically a bowl of mushy stuff with runny cheese on it.
Tonight Wizard Bob and I were trying to find a restaurant after our English conversation class ended, and we came across this little place with no sign that looked like an empty wine bar. Well, turned out they serve REALLY awesome Italian food. Now I'm no expert, having never been to the hallowed hooker-boot-shaped land of hairy women men and Vespas, but I would say that for food cooked by a little Japanese man who's never lived abroad, this was pretty damn authentic. I got some pork thing (pictured above) and it was fantastic - the perfect balances of garlic and pepper in the sauce, the green veggies were cooked just right, and the meat was really tender and tasty. Wizard Bob is a HUGE food snob - possibly a worse offender than my ex Mike (who introduced me to the world of expensive gourmet food) - and he approved enthusiastically, so it wasn't just classless me getting all excited that it was better than Ruby Tuesday. Anyway, I thought you should know.
Also, the plague monstrosity has returned. Cicadas, curse them for all eternity. I never knew a creature lacking mouthparts could be so awful. Words cannot describe the horror of having heard that familiar screeching sound tonight as I was walking to dinner. I am absolutely not sticking around here during summer holidays.