Don’t worry though, this is totally safe to read at work.

Our reporter P.K. Sanjun was taking a casual stroll around Tokyo’s Shinbashi neighbourhood the other day when he saw something that caught his eye. It was outside a restaurant called Okamoto, the spiritual successor to P.K.s beloved rice bowl restaurant Okamuraya, which sadly closed down last year.

P.K. often walks past this restaurant and it always seems to be pretty busy, but today instead of a line of people waiting to go inside, P.K. spotted a signboard with some intriguing looking imagery on it.

It’s a meat curtain!” he thought, looking at the picture on the right.

Of course, when P.K. (and indeed, many Japanese men of a certain age) thinks about ‘meat curtains’, he’s simply remembering the famous defensive wrestling move used in the Kinnikuman series.

Kinnikuman is a superhero wrestler from the Planet Kinniku, and the wrestling technique got transliterated into English as ‘Muscle Curtain’. And as we all know, there is absolutely no other meaning to the word ‘meat curtain’. Absolutely none at all.

So, now that your minds are hopefully out of the gutter, let’s continue. The meal is actually a sukiyaki (beef hot pot) rice bowl, and is available at Okamoto for a limited time only. P.K is not one to turn down an opportunity to enjoy meat curtains so easily, and especially meat curtains from Okamoto, whose sukiyaki bowls are inspired by sukiyaki dishes of the Meiji Era (1868-1912).

So P.K. went inside the restaurant to check out their meat curtain sukiyaki bowl.

There was no denying that this was a literal curtain of meat, with the beef hanging down gently from the edge of the bowl. P.K. was sure that there was nothing in the world more fitting of the title of ‘meat curtain’ than this very bowl, and we advise you to take him at his word. Definitely don’t do a Google search or anything like that.

On top of the beef, which was made up of four slices of thinly sliced beef thigh meat, were some green onions. There was also a raw egg accompanying the dish for P.K. to dip the beef in, as is the norm here in Japan.

Seeing such a mountain of meat, P.K. was expecting the meat to have a strong, heavily seasoned taste, but the beef had a surprisingly mild taste. All of the sauce had been added to the rice underneath, so P.K. was free to enjoy the pure, unfiltered taste of the beef.

The beef was tasty enough, but rather than feeling like “This is the best beef I’ve ever had! It’s so delicious I could die!”, P.K. was leaning more to the “this beef has satisfied my need to eat meat” school of thought, because actually there was one more element to this dish that P.K thought was the real star of the show. A hidden gem, secreted away underneath the layers of beef and rice.

For when you draw back the beefy curtains, you’ll be met with…

Simmered tofu!

Hidden underneath a blanket of beef, this simmered tofu was what brought this dish together. Marinated in a delicious sauce, the tofu had such a strong presence that, without it, this bowl of sukiyaki wouldn’t work at all, and would just be a boring bowl of meat and rice.

All in all, P.K. was very satisfied with his encounter with a bowl filled with meat curtains, and was even happier at how similar it tasted to his old haunt Okamuraya. After all, both chains are run by the same company (Arcland Service Holdings), so their similarities aren’t exactly a surprise, but a nice find all the same.

The Meat Curtain Beef Sukiyaki bowl is available for a limited time and costs 979 yen (US$7.40).

Restaurant information
Nikumeshi Okamoto / 肉めし岡もと
Address: Tokyo-to, Minato-ku, Shinbashi 2-16-1, New Shinbashi Building 1st floor
東京都港区新橋2-16-1 ニュー新橋ビル1階
Open 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Closed the second Sunday of every odd-numbered month

Photos © SoraNews24
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