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Stephanie is a contributing writer to “The Hudsucker.” By day, she is a teaching assistant at Kumon, attempting to convince young children that 36 is indeed less than 37, but by night, she turns into an intrepid Instagram food photographer.

The Canadian Foodie Takes Asia: Part One

Delectable window display at Cafe Est! Est! Photo credit to Stephanie Mau.

Delectable window display at Cafe Est! Est! Photo credit to Stephanie Mau.

Aaaand The Canadian Foodie is back! In the past month I’ve been lucky enough to visit some of the most amazing (and delicious) cities in Asia, so pack your bags and study your phrasebooks, because I’m about to take you dining in Japan!

Image credit to the official Cafe Est! Est! website.

Cafe Est! Est! – I’ll start off with the cafe whose window display you’ve probably been drooling over since you clicked on this article. Cafe Est! Est! offers a diverse selection of food, from pasta to salads to rice, but you’ve ever passed by their enticing window display, you know it’s the selection of humongous sundaes that really draws the customers in. Now when I use a word like humongous, I’m not just throwing that around. Their sundaes are not merely ice cream sundaes — each one features at least three different types of desserts packed into one seemingly bottomless masterpiece. The one I chose (after a considerable amount of deliberation as an ever-patient waitress stood by with her notepad in hand) consisted of a classic vanilla soft-serve cone, drizzled with chocolate syrup and sprinkles, atop a layer of vanilla ice cream, strawberries, whipped cream, banana slices and three Pocky sticks, which sat on top of a serving of Tiramisu cake nested at the very bottom. This sundae, coined the “Tokyo Tower”, was so formidable that it could have served as a very filling –if unhealthy– meal by itself. Now, I’m not even going to express how delicious it was, since that would be quite redundant at this point. Cafe Est! Est! is located on the 8th floor of Mylord, Shinjuku. (official website)

Photo credit to Stephanie Mau.

 Ichiran Ramen – In a country where you can’t throw a rock without hitting a good ramen restaurant, Ichiran serves up an interesting twist to separate itself from the crowd. An ideal spot for shy introverts or anybody who just wants a nice, quiet lunch alone, Ichiran offers a dining experience with minimal human contact. You order your ramen at a vending machine, which spits out a ticket that you then hand over to your chef (whose face you never get to see, since the seating arrangement at Ichiran is comparable to a bar counter mixed with a library cubicle). You’re also given an order form to customize your ramen, letting you choose your desired richness of broth, firmness of noodle, green onions/no green onions, etc. The ramen itself is excellent — while Ichiran may not offer different flavours or styles of ramen, their simple Tonkotsu broth is a classic, and the optional spicy “secret sauce” is a great addition. Ichiran Ramen has several locations in Japan, which can be found on their official website.

Keep an eye on The Hudsucker in the upcoming weeks for the next installation of The Canadian Foodie takes Asia, when we explore the culinary treats of Hong Kong and Singapore!

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