Nostalgic Downtown Food
Shitamachi-ya is a monjyayaki specialty Japanese pub located a few kilometers south of Hakata Station. But what’s monjayaki? Well, it’s an cheap’n’cheerful cook-at-your table dish with roots traced to the back rooms of candy shops in the Asakusa, Tokyo in the early 1950’s. Shop keepers poured a mixture of flour, water, and worcestershire sauce onto a hot plate forming a thin pancake from which children would scrap up mouthfuls while making playful designs or drawing kanji. This “moji” (letter) “yaki” (fry) gradually developed into a more substantial dish like it’s cousin, okonomiyaki. Each table at Shitamachi-ya has a built in hot plate onto which you pour the basic mix of cabbage, agedama, dashi, tiny dried shrimp and shreaded squid. Next, comes the toppings which you can select ・la carte or from a list of recommended combinations, such as the popular mentai-cheese-mochi. Side orders of other hot-plate favorites like teppan-yaki, yaki-soba, and okonomiyaki are also available. The beverage equally nostalgic with numbers like Hoppy, a non-alcoholic beer from decades back, root beer, Dr. Pepper, and Shitamachi-ya’s own brand of bottled “Kodomo Beer” – juice. For those who prefer something stronger, Miller Draft is on tap. Heartland is the bottled beer of choice, and they even have Mekong whisky from Thailand. Shitamachi-ya is full of little surprises and it’s a great place to take a group for an inexpensive, fun and unique Japanese meal with drinks.
3-15-6 Minoshima, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka
Open: 18:00 ~ 24:00
Closed: Almost never
Monjyayaki base 500 yen, toppings 50 yen~300 yen, Miller Draft 480 yen, okonomiyaki 780 yen