Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A Walk around Shinganji Temple / 森巖寺の散歩

After lunch at the soup curry shop in Shimokitazawa, we were walking home and decided to check out one of our local temples.  So we dropped by Shinganji Temple in Daizawa.


Hondo / 本堂

Enma Daiou / 閻魔大王

And yes, it doesn't matter how large or popular, or how small a temple or shrine is, most of them do offer a seal.


Shinganji Temple Seal / 森巖寺の御朱印

I think its always great to explore and discover little treasures in your own neighborhood.


Monday, September 19, 2016

Soup Curry [Ponipirika] / スープカレー 「ポにピリカ」

Yesterday as my wife and I went for a walk, we decided to have lunch in Shimokitazawa at a place called "Ponipirika".  A few months ago we were having lunch at the Butcher's Bar located below and couldn't help noticing all these people going upstairs for curry.  My wife and I were not huge fans of soup curry as we prefer are curry roux thick but with so many people lining up for this restaurant, we decided we had to check it out at least once.


Today was no different than others.  There was already a line formed and we had to wait a good thirty minutes before we were shown to our table.


We were already checking out the menu while standing in line and have already decided what we are going to order.  The chicken and vegetable curry.  At this curry shop, you can choose from three different curry sauces - tomato, shrimp, or fish extract.  My wife chose the shrimp while I chose the tomato.  You can also choose the spicyness 0 to 7 (0 being the mildest).  However, spicyness above 2 costs a little extra so my wife and I decided that 2 would be fine.  We did not choose extra toppings which is also an option.  You can also choose the size portion of rice that comes with the curry. Small - 120g (4.2 oz), Medium - 180g (6.3 oz), and Large - 250g (8.8 oz) with free refills if you so desire.

並びながらメニューを見て、注文するカレーを検討。この店のスープカレーのスープは3種類から選べられる。 トマト、海老、か和風。妻は海老を選び、僕はトマト。選んだカレーはチキンと野菜。辛さも数字の0から7まで選べられる。でも2以上は有料となります。初めて来た店なので、僕と妻は2の辛さを選びました。メニューにトッピングもいろいろもありましたが、私たちはほかのトッピングは注文してません。ご飯の量も小(120g)・中(180g)・大(250g)も選べるし、おかわり自由。

This shop's style for eating their curry.
1. First taste the soup with a spoon.
2. Scoop up a spoonful of rice.
3. Dip rice into the curry and eat.
4. Enjoy the taste of the ingredients in the curry.

Or you can just add all the rice into the curry.  It will be delicious that way as well.



Chicken & Vegetable Curry Set / チキンと野菜カレーセット

The chicken is simmered for a few hours so the meat slides right off the bones.


And I believe they use organic rice at this shop which is topped with half of a boiled egg. 


It also looks like Shimo Kitazawa will be having their annual Curry Festival from Oct. 7th through Oct. 16th.  This festival which started only 4 years ago in 2012 with 43 shops has grown exponentially and this year will feature a total of 133 shops.  From standard curries to soup curries, Indian curries, bar curries, new wave curries and quite a few others.  Mini portions and takeout service will be available to get many people to try many different curries. We may have to check out a couple of new curry shops during the festival.


Bon Appetit!


Saturday, September 10, 2016

Ikuta Ryokuchi (Part 4) Taro Okamoto Museum / 生田緑地 (パート4)岡本太郎美術館

Aside from the Japan Open-Air Folk House Museum in Ikuta Ryokuchi Park, there is also the Taro Okamoto Museum as well.  Some of you may not be familiar with his name but you may be familiar with one of his most famous works - The "Tower of the Sun" which was built Expo '70 in Osaka and remains a symbol of the city to this day.  If you are still unfamiliar, check out the picture below.


Tower of the Sun / 太陽の塔

Entrance to the Taro Okamoto Museum.


Photos of most of the art pieces inside are forbidden as they are with most museums but there were a few points where picture taking was okay.  Also, for a limited time, an exhibition of the "Railway Art Museum" was being featured.


Time to check out the museum.


One of the few art pieces were photos were allowed.


I thought I had taken a picture of the "hand chair" without me sitting in it but it seems I either deleted it or didn't get a good photo.


"Art is an Explosion" / 「芸実は爆発だ」

Taro Okamoto / 岡本太郎

I am "The Tower of the Sun"!


And of course I had to take a few photos of "Railway Art" exhibition.


In the lobby along the wall was a display of every Godzilla movie.  With the release of the latest Godzilla flick, "Godzilla : Resurgence", Musashi Kosugi which is part of Kawasaki gets destroyed!


Outside the Taro Okamoto Museum, there is one other very large art piece on display.  Not this one, as this is displayed inside but you can also check it out from outside looking into the building.


This piece is titled [Tower of the Mother].


And so ended our date at Ikuta Ryokuchi Park.