Monday, September 1, 2008
Stepping into Jimbo is like entering a Japanese escape in the middle of Honolulu. The air is filled with the aroma of the delicately smoky broth, and the sounds of customers slurpping noodles surround you. Take one mouthful of noodles and discover the tender chewy goodness of homemeade noodles. Both Japanese nationals and locals fill the room (and wait outside for a table) just to fill their tummies with the comforting bowl of Jimbo's udon. No place in Hawaii is quite like this one so its about time I paid tribute to one of my all time favorite restaurants.
My grandma who was born and raised in Japan introduced me to this restaurant back when I was in high school. This soon became my favorite lunch spot as I tried several different dished off the menu. I was never disappointed, not even once. After a long semester away at college, Jimbo was often my first stop (before even going home to drop off my bags)! With one slurp of Jimbo's succulent noodles and warm broth I was sure that I was finally home.
Everything on the menu is exceptionally delicious. I'm not exaggerating when I say everything! In addition to the hot and cold varieties of udon, you can also enjoy yaki udon (like yaki soba), oyako donburi, curry, tenpura, kayaku gohan (mixed rice), agedashi tofu and more. Some of my favorites are the hiyashi natto udon, nabeyaki udon, and the salad udon with shrimp. The curry is very tasty, slightly sweet made with a sauce simmered with apples. The agedashi tofu is lightly fried with a broth that is slightly richer than the udon broth, sharing the same smoky overtones. For dessert, be sure to order the green tea ice cream with azuki beans. My cousin used to waitress at the restaurant and she said that Jimbo imports the green tea ice cream from Japan! Its delicious!
On this particular visit, I ordered the "August Special" which was a mini hot udon topped off with natto, ume, okura, nori, and tempura chips and a mini curry rice. This was my favorite ingredients all wrapped up into one dish! I'm hoping that Jimbo will put this on the real menu because it was quite memorable! Every once in a while, Jimbo has these specials and I usually really enjoy, and then I never see it again! The one dish that I wish they would bring back is the oden! I savored every bite and still wishing for more!
Alhtough I love trying something different each time, my boyfriend always orders the same thing. Tempura udon with the tempura on the side. The tempura includes two pieces of shrimp, green beans (the best part!), eggplant, and sweet potato. the tempura are always prepared just right, never too heavy or soggy. I do agree that this is an awesome choice; however I prefer to order something different each time so that I can experience everything Jimbo has to offer!
I was always hesitant to write about Jimbo in my blog because I felt that my writing couldn't do it justice. Words alone cannot explain just how happy and satisfied I feel when I leave the restaurant. I never order udon at other restaurants, simply because I'm always disappointed. On my recent trip to Japan, one of my favorite meals was the bowl of udon that resembled Jimbo's. As I end this entry, I don't feel that I did it justice. Just take my word for it, you'll love it. Try the hot udon first, then go again and try everything else!
1936 S King Street
Honolulu, HI 96826