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Turn up the heat with meat

Step Up to the Plate

November 24, 2019

Story By: Elima Pangorang | Photos by: LAWRENCE TABUDLO

A CLOSER LOOK AT THIS WEEK’S HOUSE SPECIAL: ONTAMA BEEF RICE BOWL ($10 MEDIUM)

If you’re looking to warm up the mind, body and soul then Matsuzaka-Tei is your calling.

The casual restaurant features a humble, local-diner vibe with a pleasingly mouthwatering menu.

Take your pick between dozens of several different Rice Bowls including beef, chicken, shrimp tempura and curry, or dive into a slew of udon soup noodle bowls.

Overflowing and glistening curries surely steal a foodie’s heart, which contain unique options — Takoyaki Curry Rice Bowl or Kimchee Curry Rice Bowl — and traditional pickings like Chicken or Pork Katsu Curry Rice Bowl.

Diners can get their slurp on, too, with Beef Udon and Chicken Udon in a light broth with thick noodles, or combine the best of both worlds and get chopsticks working for that Beef Curry Udon.

The possibilities are vast at Matsuzaka-Tei, which owner Masato Sunado and manager Daniel Ihu work hard to make possible, boasting simple preparations but with big flavor.

Ihu mentions gift certificates are available starting at $25. He also encourages diners to take advantage of weekly specials (with picture ID) like a 10 percent senior discount for those over 60 years old on Mondays; a 10 percent discount for students every Tuesday; and a daily 10 percent military discount.

PILED HIGH

Thinly sliced beef and onions are stewed in a shoyu-based sauce with sukiyaki, which permeate a slightly sweet flavor with just the right amount of salty goodness.

ADD TO THE MIX

Takoyaki ($4.50 three pieces) — flour-based, octopus and vegetables deep-fried balls drizzled with mayo, a house sauce, and sprinkled with seaweed flakes — and Miso Soup ($2) are very popular side orders that guests tend to tack onto their meals.

STOKED FOR YOLK

Ontama is a combination of the Japanese words onsen (hot springs) and tamago (egg). In traditional Japanese culture, the egg is boiled in a hot springs, which gives it a soft-boiled finish, similar to a poached egg.

ORDER UP!

The bowl can also be ordered as a small with one egg ($7.50) or large with two eggs ($12).

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Hawaii's Best