?

Log in

No account? Create an account
click opera
February 2010
 
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
 
 
 
 
 
 
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 12:30 pm
Oldie restaurants

Sure, sure, sure, Tokyo's all steel, plastic and concrete. They don't let anything get old here; they tear it down and rebuild it all bland and sterile the moment anything approaching "charming patina" encroaches. But, but, but there are nooks and niches where old things persist. Oldie restaurants, for instance.



This is Ajitome in Sangenjaya, for instance. We brought Hisae's fried Satoshi to this fugu restaurant last night because we loved it last time we came... despite the presence of "research whale" on the menu.



Ajitome has classic oldie charm; the two obasantatchi who run the place have a Breughel look and a pleasant scatty informality; they heap used plates up on a messy table, and often come and plonk themselves down to chat with the customers. Their headscarves, neckerchiefs, monogrammed aprons and hairstyles impress me much more than anything I see in Harajuku; somehow they remind me of characters in a Miyazaki animation.



Another scatty-charming oldie patina dive we've loved is a little Chinese-influenced place near the JR line Otsuka stop (it's on the way to Misako and Rosen gallery).



The 84 year-old sole operator of this quiet but fascinating place told us he started the restaurant in 1959. His living quarters are directly behind it, divided from the eating space by a step and a sliding door, with a pair of slip-on shoes waiting on the concrete floor of the restaurant.



All the crockery in the little eatery was marked with the restaurant's phone number, presumably so you could report missing items that turned up elsewhere. But the plates must've been made in the 50s; Tokyo's phone numbers have long since acquired a few extra digits.



The Otsuka proprietor was a bit deaf, but friendly. His hobby wasn't hard to guess; the place was littered with fishing magazines.

25CommentReply

microworlds
microworlds
Sparkachu Maelworth
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 03:54 am (UTC)

HOW COULD YOU??? AFTER ALL WE'VE BEEN THROUGH???


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 06:02 am (UTC)

health hazard


ReplyThread Parent

(no subject) - (Anonymous)
stanleylieber
stanleylieber
Stanley Lieber
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 07:14 am (UTC)

wouldn't it be odd and kind of wonderful if western immigrants took on the responsibility of preserving tradition within japan


ReplyThread Parent
imomus
imomus
imomus
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 07:32 am (UTC)

I think that's already happening to some extent, all over the world. You can't make Britain a republic because "the tourists love the royal family", and so on.


ReplyThread Parent
imomus
imomus
imomus
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 04:52 am (UTC)

For every one of these places that lives on, one dies; there was a great place under the railway at Nakameguro station which has been demolished (along with every single business beneath that line, including Organic Depot, which was great for 1999 patina!).


ReplyThread
count_vronsky
count_vronsky
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 05:07 am (UTC)

Sweet lord that looks like heaven to me :)

(Hisae so pretty!!! *squee*)


ReplyThread
subalpine
subalpine
subalpine
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 08:41 am (UTC)

> despite the presence of "research whale" on the menu

you weren't kidding! there are about 6 "research whale" options directly above your head..
incidentally, have you ever tried it? (i'm not suggesting it..)
i did have it once at an izakaya in shizuoka -- not something we ordered; it was just brought to our table without a word, a little dish of sashimi -- and none of the others, all japanese, recognized it. the consensus descriptions of the taste, echoed about 5 times as it made its way around the table, were "mazui" and "tastes kind of like butter." we had to ask what it was, and that's when they told us it was whale..


ReplyThread
subalpine
subalpine
subalpine
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 08:44 am (UTC)

ah, just saw the link.. so, cock-up or not, what did you think of the taste..?


ReplyThread Parent
imomus
imomus
imomus
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 08:46 am (UTC)

It takes like liver. Kind of makes me want to throw up, to be honest.


ReplyThread Parent
subalpine
subalpine
subalpine
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 09:01 am (UTC)

have never had liver actually.. but if it tastes like whale, i guess i'll skip it too. (though looking at that wall menu again, i think i might be curious to try the ¥250 eel liver if i find myself in Ajitome!)


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 08:47 am (UTC)

¡¡¡ snɯoɯ ןooɔ os sı sıɥʇ

˙ʎɐʍ ǝɥʇ ʎq ʍou ʇɥƃıɹ ǝdoɹnǝ ɯoɹɟ ƃuıʇıɹʍ ɯ,ı ɥo


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 12:12 pm (UTC)

(Japan is Northern Hemisphere as well.)


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 01:58 pm (UTC)

¿¿ ʎןןɐǝɹ .. oh damn i guess kandinsky was a snıuǝƃ after all


ReplyThread Parent
niemandsrose
niemandsrose
Niemandsrose
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 10:43 am (UTC)

LOVE. natsukashii.


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 12:42 pm (UTC)
clothes

seems your wearing the same clothes everday
eeeewwwww!


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 12:43 pm (UTC)

Simply fascinating this post... Oh my! [sigh]

Pedro Félix


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 01:51 pm (UTC)

I can't help looking at your sartorial choices and thinking Bowie. With the clown outfit, you're sort of trying to be the cover of Scary Monsters. And with the flat cap, it's a touch of Young Americans Bowie. If my intuition is correct, might I suggest you go for Berlin Bowie? A retro thirties look with a fetching fedora would look good on you.


ReplyThread
imomus
imomus
imomus
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 11:03 pm (UTC)

This is the Bowie in Berlin look:



I can't help thinking I'm already sporting something very similar in that last batch of pictures!


ReplyThread Parent
mandyrose
mandyrose
Sat, Dec. 19th, 2009 02:07 pm (UTC)

I think you've been dressing like my two Buddhism teachers. They both live in Japan. One of them even lives in a paper house and layers sweaters under his robe.

It's sort of a subliminal way of insinuating wisdom by wearing a fool's clothes.


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 02:29 pm (UTC)

THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE
THE NEXT NIGHT WE HAD WALE


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 02:38 pm (UTC)

Unlike you, Tao Lin can spell.


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 03:11 pm (UTC)

FANTASTIC rapper


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Fri, Dec. 18th, 2009 06:21 pm (UTC)
i vomitted thorughout your saxophone solo

did you nick some crockery then?


ReplyThread Parent

(Anonymous)
Sat, Dec. 19th, 2009 01:12 am (UTC)

OH god that looks good.

Yeah its a real bummer Tokyo is so surface-y normal all over. Its hard to find anything of interest.... except surface-y kind of interest.


Thats one thing (knock on wood) that is still holding on in NY despite all the renovations, condos etc... you can find plenty of aged grit.

now I'm hungry for some good home cooking japanese food.;...


ReplyThread

(Anonymous)
Mon, Dec. 21st, 2009 01:43 am (UTC)

oh wow ...ashtrays...and packs of cigarettes..in public places!
the nostalgia...


ReplyThread