Day seven was a day trip to Hiroshima. Since Okinomoyaki was rumored to be best here, we saved this bucket list meal for today and it did not disappoint. This delectable dish is basically a griddle pancake topped with soba noodles and a variety of shredded grilled veggies and eggs. Ours had cabbage and shrimp in it and we had to split one because I couldn’t even eat my half. Lol
For desert we stopped in the shopping mall and had strawberry banana and chocolate crepes. They were the ultimate delicious snack to hold us over for the trip back to get dinner. Crepes are a big thing here and I’m kinda sad I waited till now to have one. I should have had more than one on his trip! Hahaha
Our last dinner in Hirakata was yet another round of conveyor belt sushi from Sushiro. 🙂 it was a Saturday night and they were packed!
Day eight was a big travel day with 4 train transfers and 5 hours of travel. We ate a really early lunch for breakfast at Train Station spot. We were the unusually early first customer of the day. Greg’s neighbor for the meal was a pig foot. 🤣🐽. I had pork soba I think and Greg had _______. [greg might remember]
Our first dinner in Beppu was at Yakiniku Korean Garden, where you BBQ your own meat and seating is arranged in private rooms and shoes are removed. Though we weren’t sitting tatami mat floor style, they were still booths, and slippers were provided for trips to the restroom.
On the menu was an assortment of WAGYU beef and pork. For desert I had a most yummy peach sorbet served in a frozen peach. We loved this place so much, guess what? We ate here again on our last night. Lol
Day nine started with what became the usual Family Mart breakfast, which was not unlike the 7-11 breakfasts in Hirakata, just different brands.
Lunch was on the front end of our tour of the 7 Hells (post to follow) at a restaurant next to one of the Hells. お食事処 極楽亭, which translates to literally to “Dining room” was next door to Chinoike Jigoku, the hell known as the Blood Hell.
My meal was simple and amazing. A bowl of pork, which melted in my mouth and rice with a local brew Japanese Hefeweizen that was delicious too! I love my local brews and they are hard to find ! Greg had _____ [pics?]
For dinner we found our 4th meal of Conveyor belt sush (LOL) at Sushi Meijin. We obviously could not get enough of the cheap deliciously fresh sushi !
Day ten was a day trip to Kokura Castle. We found this most wonderful little ramen bar in the neighborhood outside the train station. It was probably the best bowl of ramen on the trip.
Greg couldn’t resist one of the food vendors outside the castle, a grilled squid skewer.
Dinner was at, 炭火串焼と旬鮮料理の店 別府 炭旬, which translates to “Charcoal-grilled and seasonal cuisine restaurant Beppu Charson” a yakitori restaurant right by the Beppu train station, the standard assortment of pork and Greg had some chicken skins here I think… delicious of course!
Day eleven was a day trip to Yufuin, an adorable little village several hours away by 2 trains. We had lunch in the Oita Train Station mall while we waited for the second train. Amazing mall food! I had a pork soba stir fry and Greg had his third serving of takoyaki !
The Yufuin Roll cake….holly wow yummylicious!! I should have bought a whole cake to eat on the train trip back. Lol These were so amazing. We enjoyed ours at the Yufuin Roll Shop, but there were several places in town serving up this cake.
Probably deserving of its own post, dinner on this second to last night in Japan was another bucket list meal and could not have been more perfect of an experience for us. A traditional set sushi dinner experience that, in the moment for us, felt so surreal and was an experience right out of an Anthony Bourdain episode.
Sakae Sushi is a small sushi bar was run by his little old man and his sweet wife. They spoke little to no English and did not have an English menu. There was another little old couple who came in at the same time who spoke little to no more English than the sushi chef and his wife but they all four worked together to communicate with us in a humorous and light hearted fashion while we used google translate to compliment the ‘OISHI’ meal. It was a really funny and sweet time with total strangers. I should have taken pictures of everyone.
On the menu was a shared course of sashimi followed by individual courses of nigiri that the chef served as he made. It was Devine. Fresh. Heavenly. Simple. Devine. It was the perfect perfect meal for our end of adventure eve.
Day 12. The last day. Was surely a bit melancholy but was an amazingly relaxing and enjoyable day. On the menu was a lunch at the Beppu mall, i didn’t get a shot of mine. I had noodles I think and Greg had katsu with soup… it was, of course, yummy!
In the afternoon, we had several hours to kill before our last Onsen appointment (upcoming post) and while we were a bit hungry we didn’t want to spoil our planned dinner so we hung out at the previously enjoyed conveyor belt sushi spot, Sushi Meijin. This time we really only had a few plates each along with a few beers. 🙂
And for for our last dinner in Japan, we ended up at the same meal at the WAGYU steak house, we ate at the first night in Beppu Yakiniku Korean Garden . hahah To our defense we did plan and try to go to another restaurant but when we got there they were so dead, when restaurants all around were busy, we feared it was a sign and ran back to the place we so loved the first night in Beppu. And I could not resist another helping of peach sorbet!
Our dining experiences here were all amazing. Nothing was disappointing, the quality and freshness were consistent with each new and repeated experience! The service was top notch in every experience from mall foods to convenience stores too!
Overall our meals in Tokyo were the most expensive but everywhere else was relatively cheap, plus, no tipping!
Stay tuned for a separate post about the random snacks, convenient store foods and vending machines!