Travel Post: Our Japan Trip - Day 8 (Travelling from Tokyo to Osaka - Dotonbori, Shinsaibashi, Ebisubashisuji, Takoyaki and Okonomiyaki)

Matt wrote the posts from Tokyo and Christine is taking over to write about OSAKAAA
My writing style includes alot of WORDS IN CAPS (when I get really excited) and I tend to have more emoticons :) 

We caught the bullet train from Tokyo to Osaka and the journey took approximately three hours!
When we were researching how to get from Tokyo to Osaka, we saw three station names which confused us...Shin-Osaka, Umeda and Osaka. Thought it would be handy for you to know that Umeda (is Osaka for the Subway line), Osaka (JR line) and Shin-Osaka is where selected bullet trains depart from. 

Once we arrived in Osaka, we followed Google Maps to our hotel (Mitsui Garden) which was absolutely stunning. We had the city view but was amazed with the view at night. 
 At concierge, everyone spoke fluent English and as SO helpful and advised us that there's a free bus shuttle. Little did we know.... there was a bus shuttle service which departs every 20 mins from Osaka station to Mitsui Garden!!

Since we couldn't check in until 3pm, we planned our day to visit Dotonbori, Ebisubashisuji and Shinsaibashi. dotonbori is the amazing street with food, food and more food. we added Ebisubashisuji and Shinsaibashi (great shopping streets) to our itinerary based on recommendations in the Osaka guidebook we received from Japan National Tourism Organisation.

This is where the never-ending shopping street started. When someone asks the question "ARE WE THERE YET" (referring to the end of the shopping street), you know it was one hell of a walk. 
I wanted the street to end but surprisingly Matt kept pushing us to keep walking... 

This goes on and on and on.... if you are looking to shop for clothes, I found that it was pricey but just experiencing the culture and soaking in "Osaka" was worth it. 

Once you have finished walking through the shopping streets, you will see the iconic Gilco board and takoyaki. Only then you realise that you are finally in dotonbori!

Embarrassing story from us Christine. We walked down the bridge and thought we were in the dotonbori street. We looked around and thought this DOES NOT look like what was advertised in magazines. We must be at the wrong place! So handy tip guys, don't walk down the bridge LOL
Continue walking a-c-r-o-s-s the bridge!!

Alas, we found the street and hyped our stomach for a feast! 
dotonbori, HERE WE COME!

Our 5 secs of fame being featured live on the Meiji board! *waves*

When there's a giant gyoza as a logo, you would assume the gyoza is the main star of the company. The gyoza must be amazing and will live up to expectations right? 
We returned on our last day and ordered more.... 
Please do yourself a favour when you go Japan and GET YOURSELF SOME OF THESE!
Did I mention it was only 200 yen for 5? YEP!

Fresh and handmade delicous to-die-for Gyoza!

Ah there we go, I was looking forward to some authentic Japanese street food 
Takoyaki and Okonomiyaki 

Unlike the gyoza, the Takoyaki unfortunately did not live up to expectations. 
See that's the problem with set them only left to feel disappointed.
It just wasn't crunchy (the one we had in Tokyo was beautiful) but Osaka's take on Takoyaki I guess was slightly different. Great flavours but it just didn't deliver on the crunch! The squid inside was very noticeable, and they made sure that each takoyaki had at least one piece. The saviour of the dish!

On the otherhand, these grilled scallops at 500 yen each was the highlight of dotonbori for me. When ordering, cream cheese would be placed onto the shell and blow torched until it melted. Your scallop is then transferred into a plate for you to enjoy.

Perfectly cooked, loved the juice/sauce, where did my cream cheese go?? Hiding away blended into the sauce. It tasted so fresh, clear and clean?  I hope I'm making sense! 

Apparently this place has great ramen but we were saving our stomach for lunch (Okonomiyaki)

And then we saw a huge line for Torikara stick. When there's a line, the food must be good right?
Not knowing what we were lining up to, we joined in with the queue.

It was nice, moist, crunchy but that's how I would describe something that's deep fried. It was a great snack, but you felt very guilty afterwards when your hand is covered in oil. Ah well, the walking will balance it out :)
Unusual to see chocolate sauce with chicken....

I see a sea full of heads.

This was where we had Okonomiyaki and Yakisoba but it was not freshly made in-front you (like Tokyo). It was made in the kitchen before they brought it out and placed it onto the hot plate to crisp it up. I think we both preferred the Yakisoba! 
Good thing they have all those special sauces at arm's reach!

dotonbori at night!

I can get used to this view every night. It was exactly as advertised on! I was really impressed and will definitely book with more frequently. 

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