Saturday night, we met up with Kirk and the Missus.
They are back in Japan checking out new places and reconnecting with some that they enjoyed on their previous visit.
One of their reconnecting spots was Okariba.
A cozy bar with grill spaces at each table.
Since Satoshi and I had never been here, we let Kirk and the Missus do all the ordering.
The tsukidashi was a broccoli salad.
The grilled wild boar with a shoyu based glaze.
A hot pot with pork or maybe boar?
An assortment of Shinshu pickles...the owner is from Shinshu, Nagano.
One delicacy of the area is inago tsukudani...locusts! (the dark pile near Satoshi's hand in the photo)
It was my first time trying this and if no one said it was locusts (and I did not look at them), I would've thought it was shrimp, similar to some of the shrimp tsukudani we have had.
Houba miso, the Missus' fave. Miso, green onions and mushrooms are cooked on top of a magnolia leaf. We've had this when we went to Gifu and the surrounding areas...good with rice!
Basashi...raw horse meat...not gamey and when eaten with ginger and the thick shoyu it was delicious and a little creamy.
Lots of new dishes tried and it was great catching up with them.
After dinner, we caught a cab back to the Higashiyama area to have a beer at Beer Komachi.
This was also a reconnecting spot for Kirk and the Missus.
The place was packed with the bulk of the customers being foreigners.
Kirk had a Kyoto Belgian Wheat, The Missus and Satoshi had a Kyoto Wheat Ale and I tried the Ushitora Coffee Stout.
The Missus decided she liked Kirk's beer better so he ended up drinking her Wheat Ale.
I loved the Coffee Stout, lots of coffee aroma and really chocolatey (wish I had had some vanilla ice cream to put into it!)
We also tried the Ballast Point Grapefruit Sculpin (a beer that is brewed in San Diego)...fruity, but really bitter!
We had a blast chatting and we also made friends with the couple at the next table too.
Kirk gave us some Chuao chocolates which we will try soon.
It was great reconnecting with them and checking out some of their "hangouts" in Kyoto.
Thanks Kirk and the Missus, we hope you enjoy the rest of your trip and look forward to meeting up again!
43-3 Higashitenno-cho, Residence Okazaki 1F
inside of the Furukawa Shopping arcade
Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 17:00-23:00
Saturday, Sunday, Holidays 15:00-23:00