[Travelogue] Okinawa- Captain’s Inn Teppanyaki… When your Beef Matters! 

img_2359Yes, they are BIG on Teppanyaki here in Okinawa. And this post is really all about the beef! Its my chance to try the city’s renowned local Ishigaki beef and I’ve been told Teppanyaki is one of the best ways to enjoy this luxury meat. There are tons of Teppanyaki restaurants in Naha, and we decided on Captain’s Inn as they were the only one who happily let us have our very own private table.

Ishigaki beef comes from cattle raised locally on Ishigaki Island south of Okinawa. This beautifully marbled beef has a low melting point, meaning you don’t get that icky oil in your mouth when you eat it. The exquisite meat is buttery but not without bite. At Captain’s Inn, Chef Taiki cooked our beef with minimal seasoning and to medium rare. Nicely seared on the outside and pink on the inside, it was absolutely one of the best beef I’ve had. It packed a sweet beefy flavor, has a super succulent bite and the rest just melts juicily in the mouth. And despite the high marbling, no oily aftertaste at all. The steak did not come cheap… ours was JPY14,200. To me, that’s rather steep… but I’d probably have it again when I return cuz its bloody good (sans the blood)!

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The remarkable Ishigaki Steak was beefy, juicy, sweet and tender. The buttery meat melts and glides down your throat! It’s absolutely fantastic! Done medium rare pink with minimal seasoning and eaten with Japanese steak sauce. This precious meat is mind-blowing delicious!

The result, succulent and juicy, buttery and beefy! One heck of a steak that’s outta this world! This lesser known Wagyu is seriously a MUST TRY!

The rest of our meal came with the basics… soup, salads, appetizers and vegetables.

From left: Creamy tomato soup, simple but nice warm start to the meal; Fresh Salad was the usual chopped lettuce and sliced cucumbers in vinaigrette; The little Fish-shaped Konnyaku starter was interesting…a springy “cake” lightly pan fried and seasoned with butter garlic sauce; and of course, Goya Chanpuru! Can’t go wrong with this! A small yet delicious portion!

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Our meal included seafood, meats and vegetables & tofu.
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Sautéed in drawn butter,  garlic, salt & pepper… The seemingly small lobster packed quite a bit of meat and was super fresh, sweet and firm. 
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Chef Taiki went through the usual Teppanyaki ritual of flipping knives and pepper mills. Nothing over the top, and nothing unnecessarily long.
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The 2-footer butter at every table! Definitely not the “secret” ingredient!

Captain’s Inn is cozy and unpretentious. Be it a casual lunch or an extravagant dinner, they’ve got you covered. And despite our language barrier, Boss-man Yoshiji San was most hospitable! Arigato!

Captain’s Inn Kokusai Branch @ 3-4-1, Kumoji, Naha-shi, Okinawa. 900-0015; 〒900-0015 那覇市久茂地3-4-1, 国際通り、キャプテンズイン松尾店向かい Phone: 098 868-4670

 

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