You’ve never had pork until you’ve had pork in Japan. Just like beef, Japan has designer pork farms, areas that are known for it, and many grades of pork. And just like well-marbled beef, Japanese pork is amazingly tender, juicy, soft, and weaved with tasty fat.
The easiest and best way to try pork in Japan is to go to one of the many tonkatsu (pronounced: tuhn-kah-tsue) restaurants. Tonkatsu was introduced to Japan by the Portuguese in the 1800s. It was originally made with beef, but after a western-style restaurant in Ginza served it with pork in 1890, it became a hit and a classic. We happened to be in Chiba last week so we visited the original location of a popular restaurant in Daimon, Musashiya that serves garlic-stuffed tonkatsu!
This restaurant serves up Sangenton pork, which is a hybrid of pork made from 3 breeds of pigs (I guess it would be a tri-brid then?). A typical tonkatsu teishoku (set meal) comes with a fried pork cutlet, cabbage, pickles, rice, and miso soup. There’s usually a few sauces and seasonings on the table to add to your tonkatsu and cabbage – a heavier and thicker worcestershire sauce, a thinner worcestershire sauce, hot mustard, and salt. Try them all and see what floats your boat!
Personally, I love the thinner worcestershire sauce on my cabbage, and mustard and salt on my tonkatsu because they don’t overwhelm the flavor of the pork. Have you had tonkatsu? What sauces do you add to it?
7422-1 Torami Ichinomiya, Chiba 299-4303