Friday, July 17, 2015

Tang Dynasty

Location: Tang Dynasty
Rating: Very good
Meal:  Lunch
Price:  4600 yen for 3 people
Payment:  Credit Cards Accepted
Dishes: Mabodofu, Scrambled eggs with tomato and scallop, shrimp fried rice, cumin lamb sticks, pork buns, sesame balls
English Menu:Yes

I took my wife and son to the Narita airport yesterday, a drive of about an hour and 45 minutes from Yokosuka.  We hate flying in or out of Narita because of how far it is.  It's sad especially coming home because after a 10 hour flight you arrive "home" and then have to get all the way to Yokosuka.  Guess I'm grateful we don't live somewhere else in Japan as we'd have to go even further in that case, though maybe we'd just take a connecting flight.  In any case, we much prefer Haneda for our airport as that is only about 45 minutes away and is a much nicer airport.
Scrambled Eggs with tomato and hotate good thing about Narita is that it has our absolute favorite Chinese restaurant in Japan:  Tang Dynasty.  Thus the rather extravagant meal we ate.  But we get there so rarely you have to make it count.  Tang Dynasty is in International Terminal 1, so be sure to check if you are flying out of the correct terminal before getting too excited.  Terminal 1 is a V shape, and the restaurants are located in the center of the V on the 4th and 5th floors (same as the departure floor).  There isn't anything spectacular as far as restaurants go, except for Tang Dynasty.  We happened upon it once on accident as we were leaving or picking someone up or something, choosing Chinese mainly for Rowan's sake as there is usually fried rice or something he likes.  We noticed some interesting cuisine choices and when our food arrived we kept making shocked expressions over how much flavor there was in even the unassuming dishes.  Things we would normally not be interested in because of past experience actually popped a bit when tasted.  Then there was the cumin lamb!  I think it was a special or something, but it was cumin encrusted lamb chunks stir fried with vegetables.  I was hooked!

This time they didn't have the same lamb dish, to my disappointment.  But on the menu they did have cumin encrusted lamb sticks (5) so we had to get that.  I should have just passed on a main dish and eaten some of my son and wife's food, but I caved and got the scrambled egg with tomato and hotate (scallop).  It was ok, but not fabulous.  There is an excellent gyoza sauce at the table though that I like to put on everything.  It's got the red hot oil plus a tangy soy sauce mixed together.  My wife's mabodofu (soft tofu with ground meat) was actually spicy (it rarely is elsewhere)!  My son went with the shrimp fried rice, which I didn't think was all that amazing.  Another special treat are the pork buns.  These come in a double decker bamboo steam tray, with buns on the top and below the huge slices of rice encrusted super soft pork (lots of fat!).  You have to pry open the steamed bun and then insert a slice of pork and then try to eat it without getting food everywhere.  Delicious!  Lastly, the sesame balls...these look normal on the outside, but instead of a bean curd filling, there is something resembling sweet tahini (ground sesame).  Soooooo goood!

Shrimp fried rice and lamb sticks

And we haven't even even had a chance to try the shaved noodles, another specialty of the restaurant.  Apparently this is all part of the Chinese cuisine known as Shanxi, a cuisine we had never tried until we found this restaurant.  Definitely something to keep an eye out for in the future.

Pork buns (separated)

Sesame balls

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