Monday, October 24, 2005

tofu dinner

I had a very elegant Kyoto kaiseki dinner of various types of tofu and seafood. It was very nice, but not quite delicious enough for the approximate $35 price. My friend and I went to the kaiseki restaurant on the 14th floor of Takashimaya(高島屋) in Shinjuku (新宿). The staff were very pleasant and they take credit cards (important for my friend). The view from the 14th floor is very nice too. The moon was low on the horizon and a pretty yellow that evening.

Speaking of nice views, the 20th floor lobby of the Hotel Century Southern Tower has a very nice view of the city. Quite lovely. There's a lively bar there which looks like a pleasant place to spend an evening. The hotel looks modern and stylish. It's a bit surreal to see all these Americans in the hotel lobby though. I bet lots of techies stay at the hotel because it's in the same building as one of the Microsoft offices. Ironically, my friend from Apple was staying there. It's certainly in a convenient location. Just 3 minutes from Shinjuku station.

I bought some rice crackers as a little souvenir for my friend, and a set of nicely wrapped shrimp crackers for my parents. Although I believe my parents are on a low sodium diet. Maybe I'll have to give the crackers to someone else. I adore shrimp crackers.


katiedid said...

I've never even heard of shrimp crackers - interesting.

A dinner of trying various tofus sounds wonderful - it's tricky finding decent Japanese restaurants around here. Most of them all seem to serve nothing but teriyaki this and teriyaki that. This is heartbreaking, especially to a friend of mine, who loves oyako don (minus peas though) and the one place we found that serves it has stopped offering it on the menu.

kuri said...

Shrimp crackers are really popular in Japan. There's a common Korean brand that I like to eat in the U.S., but there's a whole range of types of shrimp crackers. There's the junk food kind - fried chips with a faint shrimp flavor (pretty weak, but I like them nontheless :D). I think the Calbee shrimp chips fall under this category.

There's one type of chip which is rounded and kind of thick, like they cut the dough off in slices and fried them. They probably are in the junk food category, although they've probably got more fat and fewer preservatives than the Calbee chips (which look like those zigzag cut french fries).

Then there are the high end shrimp crackers which can have a very strong shrimp flavor. The more expensive kind tend to have little shrimp pressings on the surface of the cracker and are usually round and flat discs.

Didn't know I could say so much about shrimp chips.

My visiting friend actually likes shrimp chips, so I ended up giving him the shrimp crackers too. I'll give my parents more healthy stuff.

You know, it took me forever to learn to read teriyaki in kanji. I see it on menus occasionally but the kanji used to confuse me a lot :)

It's too bad they only seem to have teriyaki in your area. I wonder if it just appeals to the average American palate? There's a lot of teriyaki in the Bay Area too. I really like oyako don. I haven't seen it with peas here though.