I wanted to eat the famous steak in Arashiyama, but they are closed on Thursdays and guess what day it was? Oh well, I therefore decided to move on and go to the other famous restaurant – the unagi place.
10:40 I was in line. There are more than ten people already in line by the time I got here
10:55 A lady goes out to ask us how many per table
11:12 They allowed us in, and we were immediately seated. Orders are taken as soon as you are ready.
11:25 Unagi was served
I bought the course set, so it was JPY3900. The donburi (unagi on top of rice), medium is JPY2,900. The menu is available online, so you can simply check it out (Unagi Hirokawa). I actually got lost looking for the restaurant, and when I asked people I simply said “unagi”. They already would know what you’re looking for – that’s how famous the place is.
With six hours for my layover, there’s NO way I’m staying in the airport. Almost all nationalities can leave the airport if they have a 24 hour transit. Some nationalities even have 72 hours (not for Filipinos). Since my layover is from 6pm to 12mn, might as well have dinner in China, right?
There’s a separate lane for the 24/72 hour visa free entries. The girl at immigration speaks decent English, and that’s about all the English I encountered. I had a friend write some Chinese phrases, and boy were they helpful!
At the taxi stand, I talked to the lady helping everyone. She helped us hire a car for only CNY60. It took us 15 minutes (yes, I timed) to go to the restaurant another friend recommended.
Since the restaurant was full, my buddy and I decided to just walk around. We asked some people (they have a google translate-ish app they used to talk to us), and off to the lake we went.
Near the lake is a restaurant. Of course we didn’t order the weird stuff. We paid CNY96 in total.
Back to Xiamen Airport
We then flagged a cab, and it took us 20 minutes and CNY40 to get back. We were back to at the airport three hours before our flight, with the check in counter opening 10 minutes after we arrived.
One of the cutest ways I’ve been served coffee – they have this press thing (that I keep on seeing being sold in Starbucks but I cant figure out how) and a hourglass! I even think that it’s coffee grounds inside that hourglass! Basically they serve you the entire thing, then say until it’s done before I drink it. (oh, it’s ~JPY350)
Now, I don’t think it tasted differently, but it is still the most adorable way I’ve been served coffee. ❤
Japan isn’t really a street food friendly. The thing is, eating while walking is highly frowned upon, though the clean streets make it worth it. So chances are, the only time to eat streetfood is during of the festivals. Another thing about the Japanese? When they decide to do things, they go all out.
Sapporo is Japan’s food heaven. It’s not Osaka (at least for me. :p) What to try?
Ice cream. The soft serve ice cream here is way better than the one in Tokyo. Then again, Hokkaido is apparently famous for their milk.
Ramen. They have a “ramen alley”. I think that’s a pretty good signal of how good their ramen is. I can recommend some, but I only visited two (Sumireya and Teshikaga), and they are really good but not earth shattering good (or maybe I’ve eaten far too much good ramen?)
Streetfood. The stalls at the festival are a must try. They have the almonds coated in chocolate, cinnamon, etc. They have plenty of seafood on a stick (TRY EVERYTHING YOU CAN!)
Pastries. There are these small stalls with small pastries filled with heavenly chocolate, caramel or cheese. It’s like cream puffs, but the size of a thumb and made of pancake-ish shells. The heavenly one was in Sapporo station that I passed when I was lost, and there are some so-so ones in Otaru.
Considering how COLD Otaru was in the peak of winter, I can only stay outside for around two hours, at which point I have to find a place to warm myself up. Where else to go but a place that boasts of the hot chocolate?