Japan day 4: train life Kyoto

Toilet in the train

Even the toilets in the train are high tech. There are two sensors, one for putting the seat up and one for flushing. The seat is heated, so your butt is comfortable while you are doing your business. There is even a security button for if you need assistance. Just wow.. the thoughfullness.

More about thoughfullness, all the seats in the train can be turned 180 degrees. So all the people can sit in the direction of the train driving.

Small size

My height is just like the Japanese people, 1.66m. Lazy Bear’s height is like a typical Dutch, 1.84m. All the chairs, stairs and buildings are a little bit smaller. The chairs are actually perfect for me, but I am not used to it. I am already adapted to the tall stuff in the Netherlands. I jump a bit higher on the stairs and dangle my feet on the toilet. But in Japan the height of the stairs is a bit lower, toilets are perfect.


A fancy dinner today at a ryokan. The food are small items and very delicate looking. The taste is light and you can taste the ingredients well. There were a few bites which had ingredients I have never eaten or were slighty familiar. They use a lot of seasonal ingredients, for autumn it is mushrooms.

Mushroom was also used a lot in our ekiban (train lunch box).

A lot of small bites today, but not much was mindblowing. Is my mouth too spoiled with good food?

Glasgow day 3 (part 2): Nippon Kitchen

We went to Nippon Kitchen for Japanese food. They had quite a variety of choices: bento boxes, sushi sets, ramen, soba noodles, teppenyaki stuff and more. They also offer a wide range of cocktails and alcoholic beverages.

Our meal was eventually about 26 pound per person. 12-16 pound for a dish, 8 pound for a coctail.

In the neighborhood are a lot of other Asian restaurants, like Wagamama in the back.

Soba noodles with chicken

My special bento box, includes sashimi, California rolls and miso soup. The rice of the sushi was exceptionally good. Never have I eaten such well prepared rice. Maybe in Japan, but I forgot. The chicken sticks were too dry. A bit dissapointed. The fried stuff was good, nice and fluffy.

The sashimi was also very good, firm and tasty. And again, the rice was just wow.

Cocktails are also very good. Recommended.

Verdict: mixed feelings. The sushi was really good. Teppenyaki stuff was meh. Miso soup tasted good. So I guess a 7.5 out of 10. If I would live in Glasgow, would I come back again? Yes, for the sushi. And maybe the noodles. But I didn’t try those yet.

Japanese food videos

Since I will be visiting Japan in November I am binge watching videos about Japanese food. I follow a few YouTubers who either live in Japan, or are foodvloggers and have traveled to Japan to eat. Below I share some of their mouthwatering videos. Enjoy!

Simon and Martine (Eat Your Kimchi) live in Japan and share their food stories (and life stories). I just want to eat all the things they have shared.

Mark Wiens (Migrationology) travels all over the world and has a famous tilt-to-side-food-enjoying movement. When I saw his Tsukiji Market video, I was smiling from ear to ear, seeing all those pretty food visuals.

Mikey Chen (Strictly Dumpling) loves to eat. He works out a lot, to eat a lot. Good life goal.

Chris Broad (Abroad in Japan) is a British guy living in Japan and makes informative, funny, sarcastic videos.

This Great Big Story video is short, but very informative and is nicely edited. Also a lot of respect to the curry chef making his fresh rice and curry everyday for his vending machine.

Yaki-The-Emon ~ just wow Japanese food in Düsseldorf

A food story

Lazy Penguin and I are still quite full from the Takumi lunch, so for dinner we find a place where we can order small dishes: Yaki-The-Emon. A Japanese Teppan- Grill & Sake Bar. Let’s go!

The interior is really cool! There are Japanese menu items on the wall, which I can’t read, but want to eat anyway. Japanese old style commercials and newspapers pasted on the wall. Wow, they even have little personal rooms where you can go crazy.

A huge lantern in the middle of the restaurant.

The service is really thoughtful and friendly. They gave me a basket to put my bag in. Now it’s safe under the table.

Ah, there is the bar area and the kitchen in the back. The employees talk Japanese to each other. I love that the waitress yells the dishes to the kitchen. Brings me back to Asia.

Look at those cute decorations: origami art and wooden blocks with art.

Time to look at the menu. Nice pictures.

You can never go wrong with sashimi (except when it tastes bad :P). But damn, this salmon quality is good. Very tasteful, strong salmon taste and so soft…

A healthy ceasar salad with shrimps and avocado. The sauce tastes very special, it’s ceasar but with something extra. Very plump shrimps. Why you so good?

We both love ‘fire eggplant’ 烧茄子, so we order the eggplant. It is so gooey! They put it on the grill I guess. There is miso taste… some alcohol… very interesting. In a good way.

Some meat with asparagus on a stick.

Time to hit the toilet. What a pretty man/woman art for the toilet curtains.

We are still not full. Or actually: we still want to eat more delicious food. So we ask the waitress for a recommendation. She recommends a long braised beef dish. Ahh, it is so rich in flavor. There are some gooey parts, I think tendon. Good choice.

Two days later

Let’s go back to Yaki-The-Emon to try out more things of the menu!

Quite crowded during lunch time. I really like their interior. Look at these jars (i think). Is it for storing alcohol?

During lunch they have a weekly changing lunch box menu. We already planned to eat Okonomiyaki, so maybe we will order this the next time.

Last time I wanted to try a special Japanese drink: Calpis, a sort of milk drink mixed with soda. It tasted really nice, sort of a soft soda lemonade. So we order it again.

We order a salmon/avocado don (rice bowl). There is some seaweed, egg and pickled ginger at the side. The salmon tastes so good again. Rice made perfectly. And I love seaweed, so I steal most of it.

We also order the Okonomiyaki with pork on top. This delicious fat pancake is just sauced perfectly. Sometimes I feel like restaurants put too much brown sauce on top, which makes it too sweet and overpowering. Here the ratio is just perfect. I can still taste the pancake.

Mmmmm, so good…

We leave Düsseldorf full and satisfied.

We will come back for you Yaki-The-Emon. <3

Well, if that didn’t give you an appetite, I don’t know anymore. If you ever visit Düsseldorf, try out this place!

Visit them!

Klosterstraße 72
40211 Düsseldorf, Germany

Mon-Fri      12:00-14:00   18:00-22:00
Sat                12:00-14:45   18:00-22:00
Sun               Closed

Takumi Düsseldorf & Rotterdam ~ Japanese ramen in Germany

Finally. The time has come. That famous Takumi store from Düsseldorf, which has also made its appearance in Rotterdam. Finally, I could eat the ramen I have craved for. Is it better than Rotterdam’s?
During the Düsseldorf food trip with Lazy Pinguin we recorded a food review video about the ramen at Takumi’s. I proudly present you my first food vlog, presented by Lazy Pinguin.

Let me know if you interested to see more videos like this. I really enjoyed making it, so probably you will see more of these 😛
That was Lazy Pinguin opinion about the food. I also have some stories about the two restaurants. So here is my take on the two restaurants and food.

Rotterdam versus Düsseldorf 

I went to Takumi Düsseldorf Rotterdam with Lazy Pinguin and Lazy Sloth (a new Lazy friend for you guys). The restaurant started 10 February 2017 in Rotterdam. I have always wanted to try Takumi ramen in Düsseldorf, after I had eaten at Naniwa. Their ramen was soso; very salty. So I was very happy to try Takumi first in Rotterdam.

We went on a Saturday around 14:00, it was not that busy, no lines standing outside. There was one couple before us, so after 5 minutes we could get a big table. Enough time to admire the interior and other graphic visuals. I really liked their PUSH and PULL on their door. Ain’t it strong?

When you are waiting in line, you get a menu to make yourself familiar with the food. This is also the same for the Takumi in Düsseldorf. In Düsseldorf they also have a lot of special menu things hanging on the windows. We had to wait for about 10 minutes in Düsseldorf and we got a table outside. The trees above us were shedding little flowers, so luckily there were parasols to prevent flowers falling in our food.

The interior of Rotterdam is really nice. The use of wood, red and black colors, Japanese menu signs and lanterns give a lovely Japan-feel.

In Düsseldorf we were sitting outside, so I didn’t really ‘feel’ the interior there. The interior is simple; crowded tables and good food.


I love menu’s with pretty food photos, this way I can have a better idea what to expect. In Rotterdam you get a form to fill in your choices. In Düsseldorf you also get a form, but they fill it in for you since the form is in Japanese, so traditional. Also the waiters speak Japanese to their customers, like “ira shai ma se” (Welcome!) I don’t know if the waiters in Rotterdam can speak Japanese..

Rotterdam menu:

Düsseldorf menu:

The food

The side dishes were really good in Rotterdam. Salty and crispy, but so o-so-soft chicken karaage. We also ordered fried mashes potato, this was also surprisingly good. Perfect crispy and salt taste. No problems there.

Chicken karaage

I ordered the Buta-Tama Tonkotsu ramen, because I wanted to try the soft boiled egg. But I was a bit disappointed. The first few bites were good, but after a while the soup left a strange taste in my mouth. Which I have had before when eating ramen, a taste I don’t really like. It tastes bitter. I give it a 6.5. This experience made me a bit less fan of Japanese ramen.

“Tonkotsu ramen broth is made with pork bones—in particular, pork hock and trotters. They are boiled for several hours until the collagen and fat break down and liquefy. Collagen, found in the bones and in the tendons that surround the bones, makes the broth dense and slightly sticky. Collagen and fat, together, turn the liquid milky and opaque.” Source

Aha! So maybe I cannot handle the collagen and fat in the soup broth… I have been warned.

Buta-Tama Tonkotsu ramen

In Düsseldorf I ordered the Teriyaki Miso Ramen. I tried to be safe by not ordering Tonkotsu pork broth with some strange aftertaste. The Teriyaki Miso Ramen was really nice, a good bowl of ramen with the best Teriyaki chicken I have ever had, juicy and plumpy. I would give it a 7.5, safe food.

Teriyaki Miso Ramen

However Lazy Pinguin DID order a pork bone broth ramen (pork shio ramen) and it was good! The pork taste is so much richer then the miso soup (also compared to the pork broth in Rotterdam). You can really taste that they have cooked the bones for a long time. I would give it an 8.

Pork Shio Ramen

In Düsseldorf we also ordered two side dishes: dumplings and chicken karaage. The dumplings had the right taste and the chicken karaage tasted good, but I thought the Rotterdam chicken karaage were better. But it’s like Dusseldorf’s tastes like an 8 and the Rotterdam’s tastes like an 8.5, so quite high up there.

Then there was this delicious braised pork rice bowl, which Lazy Pinguin described in the video: GOOD FOOD!

Pork don

The verdict

Rotterdam Takumi has more side dish choices, but the soup tastes and ramen toppings quality of Düsseldorf are better. So go to Düsseldorf!

Visit them!

Takumi Düsseldorf Rotterdam
West-Kruiskade 9b
Rotterdam, Netherlands
+31 (0) 10 302 7240
facebook.com/TakumiDusseldorfNetherlans (no, it’s not a typo)

Mon-Thu 11:30 – 22:00
Fri-Sat 11:30 – 22:30
Sun 12:00 – 21:30

Takumi Düsseldorf
Immermannstraße 28
Düsseldorf, Germany

Mon-Fri   11:30 – 22:30
Sat   11:30 – 21:45
Sun 11:30 – 22:00

Last eating day in Düsseldorf


For lunch we went back to Yaki-The-Emon for some sashimi and okonomiyaki. This place is really good, I like it better than Takumi. The atmosphere and food feel more authentic. Takumi is more branch food, it’s still good, but not so special anymore. I might be bias, because I also tasted the Takumi in Rotterdam, so Takumi food is not one of a kind for me anymore.

Onigiri at Waraku

In the Japan town area is a small shop called Waraku where they sell onigiris: triangle rice in seaweed with different fillings. I bought some as a souvenir to eat.

So cool that Düsseldorf has this many Japanese delicacies. Don’t go to Düsseldorf for the sausages and meat, go for the Japanese and Korean food 😁.

Gogi Matcha service

A sigaret after eating?! No, this is a gum shaped as a cigarette. After we had paid our bill at Gogi Matcha, the waiter came with a pack of cigarettes (I thought), but it was gum. To have a fresh breath again after eating BBQ. What a thoughtful service, especially bringing it to you after the bill. Although restaurants in the Netherlands often give you a mint candy after dinner, this was more a ‘what-aha’ surprise. Restaurants should do that more often, a fun surprise.

It’s weekend! End of the week!

And yay! Mission accomplished: posted everyday for 7 days. Now it’s time to do nothing….

Japanese food in Düsseldorf

I took a week off from work and went to Düsseldorf with Lazy Penguin to eat good food. Food trip! Today we ate a lot of Japanese food.


We had to try the original Takumi. Review: they have better ramen broths than in Rotterdam. They had a pork bone soup, so tasty! And my miso ramen was also well-seasoned, not too salty. The amount of noodles was also good, a bit less than other places, just enough for me. Side dishes were so so here, good, but Rotterdam’s were more “wow”. (I will update this post later with more photos from my big camera)
Takumi rating: 7.5/10


In the evening we went to Yaki-The-Emon, suggested by a friend of Lazy Penguin. This was a drinking/side dishes/yakitori (food on a stick) restaurant. We were still quite full from the lunch, so choosing small dishes was a better idea than a big meal.

Yaki really surprised us, every dish was really ‘new’ to us. Interesting tastes and textures. A ceasar salad grilled on the grill, a grilled eggplant with miso sauce, salmon sashimi, okra wrapped in beef, and beef stew with root veggies 🌈. Mmm. The interior design was in the style of a drinking/eating place in Japan. Really nice atmosphere. 🙂 The waiters at both places were very friendly.

Yaki rating: 8,5/10
We might go back to Yaki to try more dishes.

We saw some other cuisines we want to try: Vietnamese food, Korean BBQ and Korean shaved ice. Yes, that is mainly Asian food.