Okonomiyaki, a pan-fried savoury pancake filled with vegetables and meat or seafood, is famous in the Kansai region of Japan. There is no better place to get your fill of these delectable treats than at Mizuno. This well-known restaurant is very small, seating 38 people at capacity, so you can expect a queue – but it is well worth it. The chef’s recommendation is the yam pancake.
Another of Osaka’s most famed dishes is takoyaki – wheat flour balls with octopus filling, cooked on a griddle. It is served mostly with mayonnaise or a brown takoyaki sauce. You will find different variations of this dish in the eateries around Osaka, but the one at Kougaryu (2-18-4 Nishishinsaibashi, Chuo-ku) is one of the most famous. You will usually pay 350-600 yen for 10 depending on the variety and added sauces. This dish is best enjoyed hot and fresh so don’t wander off too far before tucking in.
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A Korean-style food that is widely enjoyed in Osaka is yakiniku (below), or barbecued meat. Tsuruichi (3-3 Shimoajiharacho, Tennoji-ku) is one of the oldest and most established yakiniku restaurants in Osaka. They have a famous sauce that has not changed since the restaurant opened in the 1940s. Their barbecued meat is also way more authentic in taste because they cook the meat over a charcoal fire rather than the more popular gas grilling that occurs in many of the other yakiniku restaurants in the area.
9. Usami-tei Matsubaya
If you only have time to taste one bowl of udon in Osaka, make it the kitsune udon (below). Originating from Osaka, this noodle dish is topped with a piece of dried tofu that has been simmered in a sweet sauce. Try it at Usamitei Matsubaya (3-8-1 Minamisemba, Chuo-ku), a family-run shop that was established in 1893 by the Usami family, who still run the business now, three generations later.
– TEXT BY JESSICA FARAH
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This article was originally published by Singapore Press Holdings.