*ding* The seat belt light comes on.
Clicks echo throughout the plane as I also put on my seat belt.
Within a few minutes, my plane lands safely on the runway of Narita airport. As it makes its way slowly towards the gate, I realized I finally made it to Tokyo after a grueling 20-hour total travel time (had a layover in Taoyuan Airport in Taipei, Taiwan). After passing immigration and customs, I had to wait another hour or two for my cousin to land. By the time we made it to our hotel and checked in, it was approximately 6:00pm (18:00). Tired, but starving, we each drank a cup of freshly brewed coffee from the hotel and hit the streets of Tokyo.
After another hour or two of walking aimlessly through Ginza and Shinbashi, we decided to walk down a semi-quiet alley with little to no people. We were ready to just eat anywhere, and the abundance of bars and izakayas made it difficult to choose. At this moment, we passed by a small izakaya and decided to look at the menu outside. The waiter steps out and greets us with いらっしゃいませ (irasshaimase), or “please come in”. At this point, we decided to go with the flow and walked through the little curtains, taking a seat down at the bar. I told the waiter I don’t understand Japanese, and he presented us with an English menu.
We sat down, received our chopsticks and hot towels, and ordered two beers. In Japan, an appetizer plate (お通し – otoshi) usually accompanies alcohol, and so we received the following dish. The appetizer plate varies, and you will never know what it is, nor would you get to choose. Either way, there usually is a charge for this appetizer dish which costs around 200¥ to 500¥.
Choosing from the English menu, we picked pretty much a variety of dishes plus a sashimi plate.We ate the sashimi plate last, and honestly it was a lot of food, but we were really hungry. Stuffed, we got the check and headed back to our hotel to end the first night of the two-week stay in Japan.
鱈腹魚金 (UOKIN): http://www.uokingroup.jp/
For a complete map of all locations featured in this blog, please follow this link: The Grand Appétit Map