Aburi 炙り means to sear, grill, torch, etc., and this is a pile of aburi pork over a bowl of rice. The reason it looks so massive is because it is. I chose the extra large one with poached egg. This is what happens when I go some place for lunch without eating breakfast: my eyes and rumbling stomach take over all common sense.
In small places where the chef is usually the owner and there is only one or two people cooking, it is extremely uneasy to leave food unfinished. Japan was a war ridden, poverty stricken country for a very long time (centuries and centuries, which is like thousands of years, to be precise). It is our custom to finish everything on our plates. In modern times, this custom still exists and it is considered rude to leave food on the plate. Especially in small eateries where the chef keeps a close eye on all of his patrons.
Stupid me has made the mistake of ordering too much as Japanese portions sometimes aren’t enough. It usually turns out to be more than enough food (aside from fine dining, the ‘Japan only serves small portions’ is a myth). But since I am convinced my ‘American portion stomach’ can eat twice as much as a typical Japanese person I forget normal meal sizes are sufficient. Many a times I am full but keep eating in fear of offending the chef if I leave food behind. This was one of those times.
Towards the end of the bowl, I was already in a half way comatose ready-to-nap state. My only savior, being raised in America and living through many holidays, my stomach and mind are trained to handle ‘beyond stuffed after Thanksgiving dinner situations’, so compared to that feeling, overeating in Japan is cakewalk. Also, this place is tasty. And pork over rice doesn’t make me feel too full.
Butayarō, the name of this pork over rice bowl place, is somewhere I would return again and again. It’s a bit out of my way but since there is no other place like it near me, I’d make the effort of a dedicated trip.
Recommended for lunch.
Drop this into Google Maps↓
M – Saturday: 11:00 am – 11:00pm
It’s on the third floor of a pretty dumpy building and this place is a touch run down too. Since it’s on the 3rd floor it might be hard to find. I found a photo of the building so you won’t get lost ↓