Monday, February 3, 2014

Taimeiken たいめいけん: Classic Omurice House Since 1931

This may not be first shop that sells Omurice but it is likely the most popular omurice restaurant in Tokyo. Taimeken began as a western restaurant selling omelette rice and curry rice in Nihonbashi in Showa year 6. タンポポオムライス(伊丹十三風)¥1850. 
Instead of having the standard version in which ham fried rice are snugged fitly into an omelette, we opted for the deluxe version-Tanpopo Omelette Rice. Slice the omelette lengthwise to let the creamy inside flows and inundate the rice. The grains that have been fried with chicken are flavorful and moist especially when mixed with the eggs. I gleefully emptied the ketchup, which did not make the rice too sticky but gave an nice tangy and sweet balance to it オムハヤシ
Another hot favorite is the Omu Hayashiya (¥1850) which is literally demi-glacé brown sauce on a pool of wobbly egg mess. It's rich, savoury and neither bitter nor sweet, and might appeal to those who prefer a beefy taste.The curry rice (¥650) though significantly cheaper, sat pale in comparison to the voluptuous omelette rice for the sauce was diluted. The sweetness of most Japanese curry was fortunately absent but the taste seemed churned out from curry stock cubes. We thought that the coleslaw and minestrone soup that appeared on nearly every table came as a set with every rice order but they weren't. So we ordered them since they only cost ¥50 each and were listed under as famous cuisine 名物料理.Though the precise name was not minestrone but Borscht soup from Ukraine, the soup was too watered down. Meanwhile, there was nothing special about the coleslaw, which was more like a plain bowl of lettuce for there was no dressing in sight.  So we figured the most delicious items worth the long wait were the omelette rice and Hayashi rice. Besides the omelette rice, they have a large menu of classic Japanese-western dishes such as steaks and various katsu (deep fried items).

The second level of this two-storey restaurant, which offers a strictly western style menu, does not open on Sunday. 
However, reservations are accepted for this level but not for level one as it is meant for casual dining. As you may have noticed by now, it seems like most of the popular restaurants in Japan attract long queues. But sometimes it is not necessarily only because the food is superb, but due to the way the customers are seated. At Taimenken, a single pax diner can occupy a four-man table simply because he/she was ahead in the queue. 

If you don't understand this logic, neither do I. 

Taimeiken たいめいけん
Nihonbashi 1-12-10, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 
Nearest Station: Nihonbashi Station
Visit here for operating hours, menu and location map

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