May 15 - May 17, 2017
Since we were in the south of Japan, we decided to hop around to different cities, try the local fare and explore a bit since we didn't know when we would be back again.
Our Airbnb host picked us up from the station and took us to a restaurant in Chinatown with what he considered to be the best champon. Champon is a Chinese style of ramen, where the noodles are cooked with the broth then topped with various vegetables and meat. Unlike Japanese ramen, where the broth and noodles are cooked separately and only put together when served.
I read that there was heart shaped stone embedded into the rock walls along a river and you bet we had to go. It was fun sitting across the river and watching people as they took photos with it.
While walking around looking for somewhere to eat in Nagasaki, I saw this guy below peering through the window and pointing at us to his customers. Sure enough, one of his customers stumbled out of the bar, approached us, and attempted to have a conversation with us in Japanese. Even though we told him that we only spoke English, he kept on talking to us and finally we gathered that he was inviting us to the bar for a free drink. We sat in the bar with these three guys and somehow managed to kind of have a decent conversation even though we didn't speak either parties language. I wish we could go back and know what exactly what was happening...hahaha
On our way to Kagoshima, we made a quick stop in Kumamoto to try another style of ramen. :) This time we stopped at Kokutei, which was about a ten minute walk from the station. Kokutei specializes in a tonkotsu ramen, but unlike the ramen in Fukuoka, the noodles are a little thicker and is cooked with garlic. YUM!
We spent the night in Kagoshima and caught a glimpse of Sakurajima, an active volcano which Kagoshima is best known for. From a viewpoint across the bay, we were able to see the volcano give off a small eruption.
We stopped at Kuro Katsu Tei to try their Katsu made with Kurobuta pork. As always, the food did not disappoint. I had the Curry Katsu and Jonathan had the Katsudon.