5 Recommended Shops and Restaurants Near Osaka’s Shinsaibashisuji Shopping Center
There is a long list of attractive shops and restaurants that are close to Shinsaibashisuji Shopping Center. Here are five of those shops and restaurants.
1. Anago Specialty Restaurant - Honke Anagoya
Honke Anagoya is an anago (conger eel) specialty restaurant that gives off a modern vibe with curved counters that look like conger eels. Anago is a seawater fish that closely resembles eel, and it is popular in Japan in the form of tempura and nigirizushi rolls, among other dishes. It has less fat than unagi, and has a mild taste and a puffy texture. In this specialty restaurant, they serve various anago dishes, from stewed anago and tempura up to nigirizushi of raw and parboiled anago, and otsukuri, the word for sashimi in Kansai dialect.
Among the dishes served at Honke Anagoya, however, one of the most famous is the multi-tiered food box Aburi-ni Anago Tokujo (2,000 JPY (excl. tax)). This dish uses one whole large fatty anago extravagantly, and it has a satisfying texture. If you want to eat anago at reasonable prices, you should come during lunchtime until 2:30 pm. At that time, you can have a taste of the Densuke Aburi Anago-ju, which uses extra-large “densuke” anago that is big even among the fatty conger eels of the anago caught off the western coast of Tsushima in Nagasaki for the price of 1,200 JPY (excl. tax).
So, if you like anago, you just have to check out this restaurant.
2. Brooklyn Parlor Osaka
Brooklyn Parlor Osaka is an American-style restaurant produced by Blue Note Japan, which runs jazz clubs in the country. It goes by the concept “everything useless but elegant in life.” Various types of seats are scattered inside this vast restaurant, with carefully chosen books adorning the rack on one wall. You can read their books in the shop, and if you end up liking them, you can also buy and take them home with you. This is a shop where you can enjoy, even when you’re all alone, without minding about the staying time.
Recommended here are the various hamburgers they serve with patties that fully pursue the deliciousness and texture of meat, and rich toppings. They’re quite famous for the Avocado & Cheddar Burger (1,600 JPY (excl. tax)) and the Grilled Bacon & Egg Burger (1,600 JPY (excl. tax)) that both offer a deep and strong taste. The Teriyaki Steak Burger (1,600 JPY (excl. tax)) is also recommended. This is a good value restaurant that changes how it is enjoyed depending on the time you visit, such as during lunchtime when they serve reasonably priced meals and during dinnertime when you can have a sip of alcohol with your food.
3. Usamitei Matsubaya
Usamitei Matsubaya is famous as the birthplace of kitsune udon, which is udon topped with aburaage (fried tofu) that is simmered in sugar and soy sauce. This restaurant offers udon that is rarely seen among the clear soup udon in the Kansai region, as it has a deep-color soup base similar to the udon in the Kanto region. Here, you can enjoy the original flavors of this longstanding shop. Alongside its specialty Kitsune Udon (580 JPY), another hit in this restaurant is the Ojiya Udon (780 JPY). In the Ojiya Udon, rice is mixed with the nabeyaki udon that is served on a piping hot iron plate, to create ojiya, a type of rice porridge that is usually made by adding rice to the leftover soup in a hot pot. Then the ojiya and nabeyaki udon are eaten together. If you find yourself at this restaurant, you can share the food with your companion if you like, but in any case, these are masterpiece dishes that you just have to try.
4. WEGO Shinsaibashi Branch
WEGO began as a small secondhand clothing store in Osaka's Amerikamura in 1994. Today, it has become a shop that mainly sells its original brands, and is associated with Tokyo’s Harajuku area where highly sensitive and dynamic fashion constantly emerges. With many affordable products offering a wide array of styles, mixing and matching their clothes is quite easy, thereby catapulting WEGO into a must-see brand especially for women in the 10 - 20s age range. The Shinsaibashi branch has four floors, making it the largest WEGO shop in all of Kansai. The 2F is for ladies, 3F is for men, the 4F houses WEGO’s largest collection of used and vintage clothing, and the 5F is the outlet shop. If you happen to come to this store, you just might find clothes you want.
*Photo is for illustration purposes
5. Masuda Shikkiten
Located in the heart of Shinsaibashisuji Shopping Center is Masuda Shikkiten that has a long 140-year history. Shikki lacquerware is a traditional craft that is made by covering wood or paper with many coats of urushi, which is sap extracted from the lacquer tree. This craft is seen not limited to Japan, as it is also widely seen in China, Korea, Vietnam and other east Asian countries.
Masuda Shikkiten carries a wide array of lacquer wares from all over Japan, such as well-known styles like Wajimanuri and Yamanakanuri from Ishikawa and Echizennuri from Fukui that represent lacquer ware in Japan, as well as Kagawanuri from Kagawa and Aizunuri from the Aizu region of Fukushima. Bowls and trays for carrying tea are recommended, but the chopsticks are especially famous at this store. And out of all the chopsticks they have, you will be entranced by the beauty of the chopsticks with a mother of pearl design in which the iridescent gloss of pearl is embedded in the chopsticks. Now these chopsticks are not bulky at all, so they would make for a perfect souvenir.
*Photo is for illustration purposes
One of the appeals of Osaka’s Shinsaibashi-suji Shopping Center is the mix of old shops that have not changed much over the years and the trendy shops that have recently popped up. If you visit this arcade, it would be best to enjoy both worlds!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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