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Japanese grocery store making a name for itself

By Andy Beth Miller Photos By MISSY ROMERO
October 11, 2015

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An encounter with Hideyoshi Takasawa, owner of local Japanese grocery store J-Shop, always is an experience marked by merriment and a wealth of fascinating information. Takasawa’s more than 50 years spent at the forefront of the gourmet food industry, paired with his gregarious and winning personality, always serve to bring both smiles and smart facts about the specialty items offered at his unique Young Street shop.

This week, Takasawa takes Dining Out on a trip to explore good eats and etymology — offering up two delicious dishes, whose names say it all.


A bowlful of savory goodness, Oyako Donburi ($8.75) is a symbolic dish, christened with what one could call a “family” namesake. A popular Japanese favorite, the meal consists of chicken, eggs and onion, wok-simmered in a special sauce, then served over white rice.

Oyako, translated as “parent and child,” adds an interesting layer of meaning to the meal’s moniker, signifying the entrée’s main ingredients: chicken and egg.

And the taste is so appealing, you won’t be worrying about which came first, just as long as they’re both brought to the table, and well within reach of your utensil.

J-Shop’s Nikujaga Bento ($8.75) also brings its own backstory, as nikujaga means “meat-potato,” informs Taksawa. It all makes sense, as succulent slabs of the tuber vegetable, alongside hunks of J-Shop’s world famous Wagyu beef, make up the majority of the meal, which is simmered with soy sauce, carrots and onions, and served in a bowl with a generous scoop of white rice on the side.

According to Takasawa, this dish stands out for one reason: “We use the Wagyu beef that is the highest quality beef, brought in specially from Japan.”

Both delicious options, these J-Shop entrées have your name on them.

J-Shop

1513 Young St., Ste. 101
200-5076
Monday–Saturday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.; closed Sunday
jshop-hawaii.com