While Jenkins and I were in Tokyo, we met up with our guide, Chie, from the Tokyo Free Guide program. Chie spent about half a day with us and took us around Asakusa and some other neighborhoods and we covered her meals and snacks. It was a great experience for us, especially since Chie had done an exchange at UBC a few years ago. Since Chie is originally from Osaka, we asked her to take us to an okonomiyaki restaurant. She told us that she has yet to find an okonomiyaki place that rivalled the restaurants in Osaka and even her own kitchen but she would do her best to find a place that we would enjoy.
We ended up going to Okonomiyaki Wahaha, which was conveniently located near our hotel in the Shibuya ward. Chie explained that it was part of a chain but was quite highly rated. As with many restaurants in Tokyo, it was located on the third floor of a tall building which housed other businesses and restaurants so you really had to know what you were looking for in order to find it.
We were shown to a small room with a grill inset into the table. While we perused the menu, we ordered some drinks. I decided to have some grapefruit juice.
We decided to order three things to share. Since Chie was the only one who could read Japanese and was also a self-professed foodie, we left the ordering up to her. First came the omusoba, which is basically an omelette stuffed with yakisoba. It arrived sizzling hot and finished cooking on our heated table grill.
The yakisoba itself was chewy and full of flavour: slightly sweet and tangy but not overly so. I also liked the abundance of crunchy cabbage which added a nice amount of texture. The omelette itself was drizzled with ketchup and mayo which added an extra flavour to the omusoba.
Next came the okonomiyaki. Chie chose one that was stuffed with pork and seafood and was topped with some Japanese leeks and a raw egg. It was definitely one of the best okonomiyaki I had ever had, if not the best. The ingredients worked well together and the porky flavour was very prominent in the yakisoba. The leeks provided a nice oniony crunch and the egg and mayo provided all the creaminess you would need.
I was a bit uncertain when I saw how many leeks were topped on the okonomiyaki but they really added a nice flavour overall. I couldn’t taste the seafood very much but the pork was excellent.
Initially, we thought that two items would be enough but we decided that a third dish wouldn’t hurt Chie told us that one of her favourite okonomiyaki flavours was one with kimchi and mochi. Jenkins and I thought it was an odd combo but decided to give it a try.
Jenkins and I loved the kimchi and mochi okonomiyaki. The mochi gave the okonimyaki and extra gooey texture and an ever so slight sweetness while the kimchi provided some crunch and spiciness. I’m usually not even a fan of kimchi but this was probably the best okonomiyaki I had ever tasted.
Overall, Jenkins and I had a great time at Okonomiyaki Wahaha. As Chie alluded to, there are probably better okonomiyaki places (likely in Osaka!) but it was definitely the best okonomiyaki that Jenkins and I have had so far. In general, the okonomiyaki here was thicker and more packed with ingredients compared to what I’m accustomed to in Vancouver and there is definitely a lot more variety. I don’t really remember exactly how much dinner cost, but it was fairly reasonable, around $40 for the 3 of us.
1-15-19 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, 330-9111, JAPAN
Futaba building, 3 Floor
Food: [rating: 4.5]