Nikumeshi Okamoto rises from the ashes of its predecessor with a new take on Japanese curry.

If you like your food meaty, then you need to know about a chain called Nikumeshi Okamoto.

Literally meaning “Meat Meals Okamoto“, this chain has been dominating the local food scene with meaty dishes since it opened in August 2022, and now it has two new items on the menu for a limited time — “Niku Curry” and “Special Niku Curry“.

These are no ordinary meat curries, as the serving sizes are huge. This is something we’ve come to expect from the chain, though, having eaten their oyakodon recently, which came with a whole egg and chicken leg on top of the regular fried egg and sliced chicken topping.

The chain seems to have sprung up to take the place of Nikumeshi Okamuraya, a chain that closed its doors in November 2021. Okamuraya was famous for its beef bowls, which, as you can see from the photo below, were extraordinary.

So when our big-eats reporter Mr Sato heard about Okamoto and its limited-edition curries, he immediately headed out to his nearest branch. There, he found the regular Meat Curry was on the menu for 979 yen (US$6.85) while the Special Meat Curry, with additional ingredients like daikon radish and boiled egg, was slightly more expensive, at 1,199 yen.

Mr Sato opted for the more expensive option, and when it arrived, he was agog at the overall brown colour of the entire meal before him, which made the red fukujinzuke pickles stand out more than usual.

Immediately trying a big spoonful, he found it to be sweet — not as sweet as a curry for children might be, but very different from the spicier curries that seem to have become all the rage these days.

While he wasn’t certain that the sweet roux and the sweetly boiled meat were a perfect match, he did get the impression that they weren’t competing against each other for attention. In fact, he figured the curry had probably been sweetened to create a sense of unity between the meat and curry.

By curry standards, this was certainly a meaty curry, and by nikumeshi standards, this was a very juicy meat dish. Back in his younger years, Mr Sato might’ve raved about this big meaty meal, but now, as a self-confessed middle-aged man, he would simply rate this as a good dish, largely due to the fact that the sweetness made it feel like he was eating an adult’s child’s lunch.

Still, Mr Sato’s older palate shouldn’t dissuade anyone from visiting the chain and trying their meaty dishes, as they have a load of  impressive meals to choose from, including the “Nikumaze Udon” pictured below, which is available at the Saitama Tsurugashima and Adachi Iriya branches.

Okamoto’s meat curries are tasty meals that aren’t bound by conventional rules, so they are worth checking out, even just for the stunning mouthwatering visuals. In any case, he’d hate to see this chain go the same way as Okamuraya, because it was a very sad day when his favourite branch in Akihabara closed its doors.

Reference: Nikumeshi Okamoto
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