This “secret menu” is really more of an alternate style of beef bowl.

In the world of Japanese fast food, one of the most popular options may just be gyudon, or beef bowls. Tender snippets of thin-sliced beef stewed in broth, then served with onions over rice is sometimes just what the doctor ordered. Plus, it always comes out fast and hot.

When it comes to beef bowls, Yoshinoya is the chain to beat. Part of Yoshinoya’s charm is that its menu is fairly customizable. Not only can you choose the volume of rice and meat in your bowl, but also the toppings and sides, which lets you create a beef bowl that is uniquely yours every time. You can even eat it with ramen instead of rice (if you’re at the right branch)!

This means that there are all kinds of “secret menu” beef bowls at Yoshinoya that Japanese citizens will gladly share. But one Japanese Twitter user has an unusual “secret menu” item that has a lot of people scratching their heads: a beef bowl with the rice on the top and the meat on the bottom.

Kazuyuki Nakamura (@CXOBANK) wrote:

“Not one person ordered this in the five years I worked part-time at Yoshinoya…this is a real ‘secret’ menu item:
‘Gyudon Nami Nikushita’ (Regular-Size Beef Bowl with Meat on the Bottom)
It’s the same price as a regular beef bowl, and all you need to do is shyly repeat your order multiple times to the confused associate. Sometimes they don’t understand it until you explain it to them. This is something I want people to order now that they know about it.
If you eat it with natto on top of it you’ll become a Yoshinoya fanatic!”

Nakamura’s simple “secret menu” is to reverse the usual position of the beef bowl’s components. Instead of putting the beef on the rice, have the server put the beef in first, and then top it with the rice.

You might be wondering, “Why?”, and you wouldn’t be alone. A lot of Japanese Twitter users were puzzled by Nakamura’s strange new beef bowl. After all, part of the appeal of a beef bowl is eating the rice and the beef together, and enjoying the flavor of the sauce mixed with the rice.

Nakamura dutifully explains:

“The benefits are: you get to enjoy the delicious flavor of the rice, and the beef doesn’t get cold as fast! Plus, you’ll surprise everyone around you. The friends you bring with you will be like ‘What?!'”

Interesting. We could get behind enjoying the flavors of high-quality Japanese rice while keeping the beef warm, and we’re always for increasing shock value. This could be a fun way to shake up the regular ol’ beef bowls we’re always getting at Yoshinoya!

Japanese netizens had their minds blown by the completely contrary idea:

“Before putting on any toppings like natto or eggs, you first get to taste the rice and then the beef. This one bowl has two ways to enjoy its delicious flavors! haha”
“I would never have thought of this, lol. I don’t think I’ll ever order it this way, but I don’t hate the idea.”
“I thought for a second you’d ordered a beef bowl without the beef!”
“This is pretty next level”
“This is a good idea! I always want to eat the brothy rice first and then enjoy the beef.”

On the other hand, quite a few netizens cautioned against trying this, saying they’ve tried ordering it and been told “We don’t offer that at this branch.” Some say that it was only something offered at the old Tsukiji branch, which has closed down and reopened near Tokyo’s new fish market in Toyosu, which may or may not still sell this reverse beef bowl. Others say that asking for this seems like an unnecessary burden on the restaurant staff–which might be a stretch, considering that all they have to do is put the same ingredients in the bowl, just in a different order.

Either way, you might face some challenges in ordering your beef bowl this way–if not a flat-out rejection, you’ll probably at least get some blank stares or weird looks. But you won’t know if you can order it unless you try, so don’t be shy if you really want to try it to see what all the fuss is about!

Source: Twitter/@CXOBANK via My Game News Flash
Images: Twitter/@CXOBANK

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