Archive for the 'Midnight Munchies Spotlight' Category


midnight munchies spotlight: Imanas Tei’s Beef Tongue and Other Goodies

It’s not a secret that I am a big fan of izakaya (居酒屋) food. It’s also no secret that I like to stuff my face late at night. Probably later than one should following sound medical advice. Oh well, if I didn’t I wouldn’t be able to take wonderful pictures of the food that goes so well with sake or Japanese brew.

Anyway, Imanas Tei, while not technically open till  midnight (and the kitchen closes well before then), is a place I find myself often on Friday or Saturday nights with friends close to midnight, which is perfect because after sake and sushi I can run (may be take labored steps) toward Bubbies for ice cream!

Anyway, here are some of my favorite late night salty treats that go well with sake and friends:

Kinpira (金平) gobo (牛蒡) or burdock is a nice salty and sweet appetizer with a bit of crunch that like to start out with.

Agedashi tofu (揚げ出し豆腐) another nice small dish. I like the texture of the crunch with the soft tofu inside sitting in a nice broth. I think I also delude myself into thinking I’m eating something healthy because it has tofu . . . .

Beef tongue or usually referred to tan shio (タン塩), which literally translates into “tongue salt” because it is usually flavored with salt is one of my favorites. The texture is usually delicate, but slightly chewy and the saltiness erodes any delusion in my head that this is something healthy . . . well there is the lemon and parsley, no? Anyway, I can’t saw if Imanas Tei’s beef tongue is better than Aki-No-No’s because I really just like the beef tongue itself.

You can’t go to a Hawaii izakaya and not get some sort of sushi, or well I can’t. Always one of my favorites is unagi, cucumber, and avocado roll. To me its a classic that I never get tired of and probably could it 3 days a week, possibly 4 if there is sake with it.

Speaking of sake, I love Imanas Tei because it has my favorite sake for izakaya food. Akitabare Junmai “Northern Skies” compliments salty food quite well because of how dry and smooth it goes down. Not to be trite about it all, but the name is highly evocative of a northern skies, crisp and cool. I highly recommend it.


Midnight Munchies Spotlight: Aki-no-no Dishes

WARNING: If you love Japanese food and are looking at this blog at night you will get hungry! Hungry enough to go to Aki-no-no for a snack!

One of my big cravings at night is Japanese food. Sushi, small grilled dishes, and a spot of Japanese beer or sake can really take care of anxious taste buds. I love salty and simple, and then washing it down with something dry and smooth. So it’s no surprise that I can be found often at Aki-no-no. This little gem, across from Puck’s Alley, offers not just one, but multiple midnight munchies for me.

I highly recommend checking it out late night. Added to the tasty dishes (pictured below) is that it has that cozy feeling of a small, authentic sushi bar found in the neighborhood in Japan. The owners of Aki-no-no are also the proud parents of the J-pop star Yuna Ito.

Let the parade of pictures begin!

Always a favorite, unagi nigiri!

Don't take my temaki rolls! They are so delicious.

Fried oysters are fantastic in my mouth!

Tempura pumpkin - tempting aren't they?

Yakisoba, always simple and tasty.

Grilled beef tongue, leaves me speechless every time!

These are baby bok chois (Chinese vegetables), but unfortunately they are NOT bacon-wrapped enoki, which I have no picture of this time, but always order . . .

Btw, I know what you are all thinking that was not a snack, that was enough food for a meal . . . alright, it was a snack meal! DON’T JUDGE ME!


Midnight Munchies Spotlight: Liliha Short Stack

One of my favorite places to grab pancakes in the middle of the night, even though it is totally unhealthy, is Liliha Bakery. This little gem of a diner in the heart of Liliha is the perfect place to hit up after clubbing, karaoke, or playing too much Rockband at your friend’s apartment.

Breakfast at midnight always hits an insomniac's spot.

Best part is that the batter used by Liliha’s staff is consistent. All the times I’ve gone it tastes the same. The pancakes are moist, nice-sized, and fluffy. They stand up to syrup quite nicely and lastly, you can get them fast. If you are craving something sweet, warm, and fluffy grab a short stack, you can be in and out there just as fast as any other fast food joint.

Catch you there in the middle of the night!


Raiding one refrigerator at a time!

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