A sandwich is a sandwich but Osaka Tonkatsu is a meal.

With these days of ever-increasing food prices, it’s important to get the most mileage out of your money when it comes to food. As Lawson’s wildly popular volume-increasing campaigns have shown, people are craving more bang for their yen and on that note, there are few places that do it quite like Osaka Tonkatsu.

This sandwich shop is run by former sumo wrestler Chiyomatsu, who has designed a range of sandwiches suited for big eaters like himself. The first Osaka Tonkatsu opened in 2022 near Umeda Station and was followed by a second food-truck-style location that opened last December not too far from the bustling Dotonbori area.

I was feeling a little peckish the other day and decided to stop by for a light lunch. The signature sandwich of Osaka Tonkatsu is made with a fried pork cutlet five centimeters (two inches) thick.

▼ As you can see from the signs, the staff are ready to cater to tourists can help you in English, Tagalog, and a little Korean.

However, last January, Chiyomatsu came up with two new chicken cutlet sandwiches, so I decided to try one of those this time. The Chicken Katsu Oyako Sandwich is a very large fried chicken cutlet topped with egg salad and a gracious amount of sauces.

Possibly because of the thickness of the cuts, the meat is slow-cooked for about 24 hours. This means that it’s all ready to go and my order was made surprisingly fast. The staff was kind enough to lend me their kitchen scale so I could get an official weight of this beast at 708 grams (1.6 pounds)!

Since it’s a food truck, most people would probably get their huge sandwiches to go, but there are some standing tables out front which I took advantage of.

Looking at these pictures you’re probably wondering the same thing I was at the time: “How the hell are you supposed to eat that?”

I was expecting a knife and fork, but instead got a pair of plastic gloves.

It made sense in a strange way since eating a sandwich with a fork and knife would seem to nullify its existence as a sandwich.

Careful planning was needed to defuse this calorie bomb and I opted to start at the ends with the largest amount of chicken jutting out. When eating this much fried chicken, quality is important and Osaka Tonkatsu delivered on that end. It was extremely tender with a lot of crispy breading.

Thanks to the tenderness of slow cooking, it goes down smoothly and I could eat through it at a fairly good speed. After eating off the overhanging chicken, I was left with something that started to resemble a normal sandwich.

By the way, this Osaka Tonkatsu location is set up right in front of the Doton Plaza shopping center. It’s a facility with a lot of duty-free shops, making it popular with tour groups from overseas. I mention this because as I ate a few tour groups walked past my table and took pictures of this little piggy with literal egg on his face.

It would have been nice if they asked before photographing this intimate moment between my sandwich and I, but at the same time, I took some civic pride in becoming one of the many sights that Osaka has to offer visitors.

Back to my eating strategy: I knew before I even started that there was no way all that egg salad was going to stay on the sandwich. So, partway through, I jettisoned the bottom slice of bread in order to rescue the lost egg and other debris later on.

After finishing off the main chicken I shoveled up the rest of the egg for a post-sandwich sandwich. It was a nice surprise too, because eating the egg salad on its own helped me notice how much attention was paid to its seasoning and overall flavor. I would have been satisfied with a sandwich of just that alone.

Needless to say, it was extremely filling but considering the sheer volume of it, I didn’t feel as sluggish as I expected. For 1,200 yen (US$7.75) it was enough food to carry me through most of the day. Pound for pound, it’s a really good value compared to other places.

After having gotten a taste of the quality, I’m now really interested in trying the regular pork cutlet sandwiches, but I’m going to need a few days to get hungry enough to return to Osaka Tonkatsu.

Store information
Osaka Tonkatsu (Formerly Chiyomatsu) / 大阪とんかつ(旧店名ちよ松)
Osaka-fu, Osaka-shi, Chuo-ku, Shimanouchi 2-15-10 Doton Plaza
大阪府大阪市中央区島之内2-15-10 DOTON PLAZA
Open: Noon – 8 p.m. or while supplies last

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