Even the lagers in pints have their own replicas. These replicas are made from silicone material. In the past they used wax models.
Because many visitors do not have a basic level of Nihonggo literacy, the ingenious Japanese – always inventing new stuff – found a way to make things easy for all of us during meal times. These plastic food models are truly a lifeline for our gaijin bellies. What would we, lowly tourists, do without them?
At many izakaya restaurants though, which are mostly catering to the local market, we rarely saw these plastic food displays. Sometimes they provide pictures on their menu, but not always for all the dishes, unfortunately. So on our first time at an izakaya restaurant we ordered the wrong food. Shit happens, hehe.
I took by the way these plastic food replica photos in Asakusa. It’s a popular place often visited by many tourists because of its resident temple, and well, the geishas too.
These fake food mock-ups are also popular in South Korea, and there is a growing market in China as well. At least you now know where this food replica concept came from: Invented in Japan.
We also thought that food in Tokyo is relatively cheaper compared to the Netherlands. A deluxe set lunch is usually priced at ¥1,180 which is about €8. A much cheaper set lunch is around ¥650 (€4.40). A bowl of ramen ranges from ¥390 to ¥550 (€2.60 to €3.70), and a serving of gyozas for 5 pieces is around ¥190 (€1.30).
These prices are quite cheap for Europeans, especially for residents from northern European countries. So I guess its the rent and prices of real estate that makes Tokyo very expensive, not the food.
Shrimp Tempura set lunch looking very real.
Fake sashimi set lunch.
This looks like a prepped up for tourists izakaya restaurant.
Delicious ramen bowls. The Japanese have a penchant for topping their noodles and rice dishes with poached and raw eggs.
For a ¥490 (€3.70) big ramen bowl, you will get an apple tart with cream in the Netherlands. A noodle bowl like this here in the Netherlands would easily be 2x to 3x the price.
Due to getting sick, I was not able to eat a lot of variety of Japanese food in this trip. But hey, the good news is, I am so coming back soon for some serious food tripping.
Travel Period: November 2014
Destination: Asakusa (Taito – Tokyo), Japan
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