Tuesday, March 12, 2013

四海楼 (Shikairo in Nagasaki)



This is it. This is the birthplace of Nagasaki champon.


Yes, this massive, five-story palace houses a restaurant, gift shop, banquet halls, and a museum.


A champon museum.

I'll spare you the museum-level details, but around 1899, Shikairo's chef wanted to make something that mixed Chinese and Japanese cuisine into one. Champon is made from a thick pork soup, sometimes with a lot of egg. The noodles are cooked in the soup, thickening it even more. The whole thing is topped with a stir fry of vegetables, seafood, and meat. If you've ever had a Chinese stir fry with seafood and veggies, then you are close to knowing the taste.


Nagaski is packed with champon shops. Most, though not all, have a dozen or so Chinese dishes on the menu. Go with a group and you can have a feast.


Kanpai! Japanese beer and Chinese wine!


So here it is, the original champon in all its glory.


And it was a forgettable one.


The initial satisfaction was certainly there, but that was due to the nature of my empty stomach (filled only with Chinese wine). In the end, this is a bowl for tourists. The one way to make a bowl of champon shine is with the toppings. Colorful, fresh vegetables and straight-from-the-sea seafood can make a bowl fantastic.

But like I said, this was a bowl for tourists. And at 950 yen, they are making a killing.


But you gotta pay homage, no?


Official site here

View Larger Map

Nagasaki-ken, Nagasaki-shi, Matsugaemachi 4-5
Closest station: Ourakaigandori

Open 11:00-3:00, 5:00-9:00
(everything in Nagasaki closes at 8pm!!!!)


Scott said...

You went from Tokyo to Nagasaki on a Tuesday? That is a distance to go for a poor bowl of soup.

Brian said...

My posts are backlogged a bit. I Actually went here on a Saturday night in February, and the next couple posts were over the next couple days.