Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The Food

I hate the food here. Other than the ridiculously expensive strawberries, I find most things here unappealing. The bread I bought yesterday was gross. I threw up after eating at the Tex-Mex place in Iwakuni on Sunday. No matter what I buy I can taste Japan in it.

Jon coming here has validated my opinion of the food. Thus far, he’s not a fan. The soymilk is different, the coffee tastes watery, and tofu dishes lack any kind of spice or flavour. We’re not the only ones, though. Non-vegetarian gaijin hate the food, too. And it’s not even being afraid of something new or different, it’s just totally unappetizing. I watch cooking shows on TV and have never once started salivating from what Ive seen. And unless you’ve been here I don’t want your opinion of how I should feel about the food. Going to a Japanese themed restaurant or an American sushi place is not the same.

There is a place in Tokuyama I really like though, called Trés Café. The menu is completely Japanese (with no pictures) but Ive been there enough times with Ashley (who can read and speak the stuff) to know how to order the ¥800 set (it’s a great deal!). I know I impressed Jon yesterday when I ordered us both the sets (which includes a salad or sandwich, fruit, toast, jam, and soup) and answered what kind of soup (pumpkin), said we wanted salad and communicated which dressing. I forgot about the jam flavour question, though. So when the waiter managed to get “Strawberry, blueberry?” out in English I asked if he was asking about the coffee flavour. That got a laugh from the chef and other waiters later when I saw him retell his hilarious gaijin-tale. But Trés Café isn’t Japanese food, obviously. They don’t even have chopsticks there.

I do like noodles sometimes. I love the ramen at Antonio’s yatai. Last night some guy ordered me and Jon tofu Oden, understanding we were vegetarian. I ate a piece out of politeness (and complete drunkenness), but a piece of tofu floating around with fish, pork and eggs in a dirty pan with soy sauce isn’t exactly vegetarian. My spirit is slowly being broken.

I have tons of food in my house right now. Jon brought me a huge jar of peanut butter and bags of beans (among other things) from Canada. And there were massive leftovers from the Nabe (my fridge is stuffed with cabbage and vegetables I don’t know the names of). Sister Fuji keeps bringing me fruits and vegetables and my dining room table has a fruit bowl overflowing with grapefruits, kiwis, and mandarins. Yup, food.

God, I hate this blog.

1 comment:

Patti Auburn said...

Gosh - I don't get it with the food. And yes, I've lived in Japan. I love the food, but I suppose it would be hard if you're vegetarian. I wasn't when I lived there, but I am now. Except when I'm traveling to foriegn countries - I'm not going to eat sausage in Germany - I'm not even interested in Germany, but if you could maybe bend a little and be OK with fish - the food is fantastic. The only place I've traveled in which it was easy to be vegetarian is India - so easy - food so good. But a bowl of rice and a bowl of miso soup for breakfast in Japan? Yes - that would make me happy. Local noodle shops often have noodles with broccoli only - maybe you could bring a picture if you don't know the word or the kanji...