Hi guys, just keeping you posted on my trip throughout Japan. Today I went to Sushi Bun for an early lunch. Surprisingly, Sushi Dai had fewer people but I decided to go to Sushi Bun instead. The wait was about 45 minutes and they gave some cold tea to drink as you waited. The highlight of the Set C omakase wasn't the ohtoro but the uni. Oh my god, it was so delicious. Sweet, creamy, rich, with that slight taste of the sea, this uni is unlike any of the uni I've had before. Even the uni I had straight from the shell wasn't as good as this. Also great was the anago. Literally just broke apart in my mouth and melted. The guy told me to eat it with my hands because it was too soft to eat with chopsticks. A wise man indeed. There was also something else that came with the uni, but I don't know what it was. It was a lot of cut up pieces of something that had yellow and orange parts. Kind of looked like sea squirt but it tasted different, so I don't know what it was. Anyway, I was almost in tears during the middle of the meal. The sushi rice, the wasabi, everything was superb. One person there recognized that I was Korean based on how I paid my bill, which was kind of interesting. An amazing lunch and I regret that I won't be able to have this again for a while.
Then, I went to Ginza because my friend told me to check it out. As soon as I walked out of the Ginza station, I was in front of the Dior store. It's like I was destined to go there from the start, hahahaha. Anyway, as soon as I went in, I started looking through the jean collection. I saw they had the private colognes that Hedi designed during his tenure (Amber Nuit, Cologne Blanche, Bois d'Argent, and I think the last one was Eau Noire?), but they were like 240 dollars a bottle. I passed, but I really enjoyed Amber Nuit. Anyway, the first pair of jeans I decided to look at was my "grail" item of the MIJ line, which was a size 28 silver selvedge 19cm. I thought I could fit into the 27, but they were a bit too tight. The 28 was a PERFECT fit off the rack (albeit a bit long for my 5'6" stature). They were ridiculously expensive, but the ecstasy from the sushi I had just an hour ago was lingering, and I totally went on the impulse buy. Do I regret it? My wallet does, but I don't. Perhaps once I start starving to make up for the purchase I will start regretting it.
I then revisited the Imperial Palace since I wasn't able to go inside last time. It's more like.....a large walking course since most of the buildings are gone now. Kind of meh. It was around 5 PM at this point, so I decided to head back to Tsukiji to try fugu. Upon arriving, I saw that they were having a matsuri at some Buddhist temple. I walked around, but I didn't want to ruin my appetite, so I opted not to eat anything. Tentake was relatively easy to find compared to Sushi Bun. I recognized the character for heaven, so it made finding it a bit easier
Also they had a giant blowfish, but that's besides the point. I originally ordered the Tsukiji set, which is all blowfish dishes, but in a split moment of wanting to eat other things besides fugu (possibly a moment of stupidity on my part) and because of all the foods I haven't been able to eat in Japan yet, I decided to switch my order to the slightly more expensive set, which also had more of the fugu sashimi. The highlight of the full course was definitely the sashimi, but I don't think it was worth paying an extra 1500 yen for it (they replaced some of the blowfish dishes with yakitori and shrimp tempura. I think specifically it was the vinegared fugu and the fugu kare-age, was it? fugu tempura). The sashimi was tora fugu and it has...very little taste. It's very subtle, kind of similar to fluke, but it's much chewier and has a smoother texture. It came with a slight sour sauce that seemed to have a soy sauce base, which tasted pretty good. I think it would have been better if I had it during winter, which I read was fugu season. The yakitori was all right, but the shrimp tempura was absolutely perfect. Generally, in the US, shrimp tempura is overcooked and cooked for too long at a low temperature, so it gets really greasy and kind of soggy. This was perfectly cooked. The shrimp was large, yet extremely soft and tender, and the tempura batter did not taste greasy at all. The fugu sushi was.... really bad. The sushi rice just fell apart on the plate and the guy used too much rice vinegar, so you couldn't really appreciate the rice or the sushi. Also, the fugu was cooked, which I found to be a bit disappointing for sushi. Raw fugu is much much better than cooked fugu. Next, they came out with some sushi nabe. This was when everything started to go downhill. They sent their novice waitress who just dumped all the fugu in at once before even starting to cook the vegetables. Granted, it's because the head waitress told her something about foreigners not liking something (i heard gaijin and kirai so...), so I assume she thought I wouldn't eat it if the meat were undercooked. Really bad service on their part, IMO. The fugu was then overcooked because I couldn't possibly eat everything fast enough, and I didn't have enough space to put it on the tiny bowl they give you. I would have preferred to just eat each piece of fugu as if I were eating shabu shabu. Like fugu itself, the broth was similarly very light and could have used a bit of salt or something. Very disappointed in how they automatically assumed I wouldn't know how to eat fugu. But what's worse is that after the nabe, they make you porridge with the remaining broth. Jesus christ, the girl did not even know how to make porridge. She left way too much soup and cooked it at way too high of a temperature. She didn't even season it enough so it tasted literally like nothing. When she started serving me the porridge, it was more like soup and rice instead of porridge. I got kind of annoyed after the whole nabe incident so I just asked her to leave the fire on and I just cooked the porridge on my own. I also ordered some fugu tail sake, which is basically just a smoked fugu tail that they add flaming sake to. It was quite nice. Very smooth, nice nutty taste, and a slight smokiness. Total cost came out to 9480 yen (a large bottle of sapporo, fugu full course, and the fugu tail sake). I was kind of disappointed in the service, as I paid more than any of the other patrons there, but I received far less attention than the other customers did. The other people just ordered a single serving of the fugu nabe or something. I think they kind of looked down on me because I was a foreigner. Lame
As for the final leg of my night, I decided to head to Asakusa to see the Sennoji Temple, even though it was closed. I was also hoping there would be another matsuri around the area. Sennoji was nice, but I think it would have been much better if I had visited during the day. I think traditional Asian buildings were made to look nice in the sunlight, unlike most modern buildings. Regardless, it was a nice walk. There was indeed a matsuri going around here too, but it was much smaller than the one at Tsukiji. It was kind of getting late so I decided to head to Roppongi Hill to see what it was all about. Roppongi... is boring unless you have friends here.
I didn't want to drink by myself so I just back to my hotel room.
I'm debating whether I should check out Tokyo Tower before I head to Hakone tomorrow. Is it worth it, or is it only nice at night? I was originally just planning on going to Hakone after I checked out from my hotel. I was thinking of checking out Mt. Fuji from around there and maybe chilling for a bit at an onsen. I don't really know much about Hakone or how to even get to Mt. Fuji from the Hakone station, so I should probably look that up before I head out tomorrow.