December 23, 2019

Pre-holiday FUK: late-night eats

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Maybe it's that late-night session last month... I don't know... but for someone who very rarely goes out for late-night supper after dinner, I inexplicably felt the need to binge while I was in Fukuoka.  I just felt that there were things I wanted to eat and places I wanted to hit during my slightly longer stay this time around.

On my first night, after a sake session, I was dead set on getting some motsunabe (もつ鍋).  It's something that originated from this part of Japan, and I didn't get around to having some during my short trip last month.  So I's gonna git some!

It was past 1:30 a.m. and many shops selling motsunabe were already closed or closing... and I was by myself.  I left the Grand Hyatt Fukuoka on foot and headed in the direction of Tenjin.  The sign outside the Haruyoshi (春吉) branch of Ryu no Su (龍の巣) advertised motsunabe, since they specialize in horumon (ホルモン), so I sat down and ordered one up.

First, a little appetizer...

Original kasu motsunabe (元祖かすもつ鍋) - I've never had a real authentic motsunabe, so this was all new to me.  We've got mostly cabbage and chives, along with raw cow intestines, and surprisingly deep-fried intestines and fat (かす)... all seasoned with some garlic and sesame.

This was pretty damn tasty.  Besides the fatty, chewy intestines, what really made the dish were the pieces of deep-fried intestines.  Those really added a lot of flavor and made this really stand out.  Very, very satisfied.

On the second night, I was feeling peckish again after some cocktails.  This time I had Hello Kitty with me, and we figured we couldn't come to Fukuoka without checking out Ichiran (一蘭).  Some ramen on a cold night?  Hell yeah!

Apparently the branch in Tenjin Nishidori (天神西通り) is one of two locations offering a special ramen in a rectangular bowl, so we figured we needed to see what that's all about.  Thankfully we didn't have to wait very long for our seats.

Premium tonkotsu ramen kamadare style (釜だれとんこつラーメン) - the serving vessel looked like a jubako bento (重箱弁当) box.  Apparently the broth was made by stewing roast pork in a big pot, which gives a richer flavor.  It certainly tasted richer to me.  And for the first time, I actually added some of the signature spicy red sauce.  And I asked for firmer noodles as usual.

Interesting that the slices of char siu (チャーシュ) that came with the bowl were sliced very thinly, while the slices which came as part of the premium set were probably double the thickness.

Very, very satisfied.

On the third night, DaRC decided that he, too, wanted to have motsunabe.  We ended up going to the Nishinakasu (西中洲) branch of Rakutenchi (楽天地) - a local chain specializing in this dish - as it was the only outlet open past midnight.

We chose to order just two single portions of the motsunabe (もつ鍋単品コース) instead of other, more premium choices with more intestines.  We did, however, order an extra portion of vegetables (野菜セット) - giving us more cabbage and chives.

The broth here was pretty flavorful... but didn't have that extra ooomph that I found on the first night coming from the deep-fried intestines and lard.  Still very happy, though... especially since we had a lot of veggies.

On our final night, Hello Kitty and I returned to Hakata Ramen ShinShin (博多らーめん ShinShin) in Tenjin together with DaRC and Ro Ro.  I would have one last bowl of Hakata-style pork bone ramen!

Spring onion ramen (ねぎらーめん) - I decided to forgo the egg and get more spring onion instead.

Gyoza (餃子)

Stir-fried ramen (焼きらーめん) - I was really curious about this, and decided to order this as an extra.  Basically a yakisoba (焼きそば) with chanpon (ちゃんぽん) toppings..

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