Saturday, June 25, 2005

Incredible burger!!

This is not a post for the vegetarians or vegans in our readership.....In these last couple of days here in Tokyo, I'm enjoying visiting some of my favorite neighborhoods and haunts. The weather is hot and sultry so wandering through these parts of town is a slow and leisurely adventure. Today (Saturday) was especially nice. Around mid-day, I went down to Harajuku and Omotesando....the latter is one of the glamour neighborhoods of central Tokyo. When lunchtime came around, Tatsuo suggested we find Zip-Zap, an up-scale bistro in the heart of Omotesando.

We had seen the chef at Zip-Zap on a crazy Japanese TV cooking show one evening where he whipped up a luscious looking hamburger that had everyone ooohhing and ahhing. Believe me, the Japanese take their food seriously, even hamburgers. But really, could anyone top a good American hamburger? We decided to find out first hand. Having read the headlines that the Americans had just found the second case of Mad-Cow Disease, perhaps burgers in the States will soon be a thing of the past anyway.

What I found at Zip-Zap was absolutely THE most delicious hamburger I've ever sunk my teeth into. Bar none. Of course, this being Tokyo, it was also the most expensive burger I've ever had in a non-hotel, non-roomservice environment. We went all the way and ordered the 250 gram (that's 1/2 pound) Cheddar Cheese Burger. That's 250 grams of the finest Japanese beef. If you ever get a chance to have Kobe beef, or any other from one of the many prefectures of Japan....jump at the chance! When the burger arrived, the presentation was elegant.
picture (once at the Zip-Zap page, click on "menu -- main" and find the burger section!) The waitress took time, however, to instruct us on how to prepare this huge burger for consumption.

Take the long toothpick out that was holding everything in place, she advised. Then, gently press down on the top of the sesame seed bun. (Really??? Press down??? hmmmmm...) As we did that, wonderfully delectible juices oozed out of the burger. Mouth-watering, to be sure. What followed was a gourmet's delight. Honestly, it was incredible!

And.....all for only $20. Gulp! I'm glad it took me to the final day in Tokyo to find this place. I'd have been bankrupt and fatter by far if I had found it any earlier!

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Having moved scores of times in the past 35 years, I long ago came to the conclusion that a place became "home" when I got the pictures hung. In the past 10 years (4 countries, 4 jobs, 7 different houses/apartments) the time between packing up and re-hanging pictures has decreased remarkably. I'm either adept at hanging pictures or I am desperate for a place called "home." More the latter than the former, I think.

Well, today the pictures are all off the wall, waiting for the movers to come and pack them up. Seeing as this is Japan, I am sure the packing will be done meticulously. I just wish my life were as meticulously worked out.....the subject for another blog entry. Today, I'm just homeless. Oh, I've got a pillow and a place to lay my head. Not to worry. But the pictures are down and it will be a few months before they're hung again in another apartment, in another city, on another continent. And, I'll be home again. I hope.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Contradictions.....get lost in translation

You'll never believe what we now have in my neighborhood. For about $36.00 you can get a dozen of glazed donuts! (check out the "Menu" on the website: prices are, of course, in Japanese yen. ¥350 = $3.50 more or less) Of course, you could also spend that $36 on a cateloupe in the grocery store around the corner.