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Aug 18, 2009 05:44 AM


Can you get takoyaki in Boston or Cambridge? Or is it strictly a street-fair food?

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  1. Not freshly made. I've never seen takoyaki sold by vendors here. The only kind I've seen is the frozen variety sold that used to be sold in Kotobukiya. They might have these in the new Japanese markets.

    The only place I recall seeing them on the menu is Fugakyu, and I suspect that they were previously frozen too. They taste fine for what it is - certainly not as good as the kind you get off the streets of Osaka, but they're a good alternative when you have a craving. You can even buy shaved bonito, scallions, Japanese mayo, and takoyaki sauce to recreate all the toppings you want on them.

    1. Tampopo in the Porter Exchange has them, and they're made fresh (or at least they used to be--I haven't been there recently). They were alright, though inconsistently cooked, sometimes a little underdone and sometimes a little overdone. Also, instead of okonomi sauce and mayo, they put their "special" spicy mayo on it, which is also pretty good.

      7 Replies
        1. re: another_adam

 Tampopo good? One of the stalls I've never visited, only because I've never heard good things about their food. If they serve fresh takoyaki, that might just get me interested enough to give them a try.

          1. re: kobuta

            i've never had the takoyaki but i really like their korokke (fried potato croquettes) and tatsuta age (japanese style fried chicken). last time i was there they also had kaki fry (japanese style fried oysters) on the menu. i didn't try them but my friend seemed to like them a lot

            1. re: galangatron

              Mmm...I've been craving kaki fry since returning from Miyajima last fall and having terrific kaki fy there. And I don't even like oysters all that much. This place sounds like it's worth a visit. Thanks!

            2. re: kobuta

              Tampopo is one of my favorite Japanese restaurants. It's a true gem. Very good tempura and the cream croquettes are great. Try the matsu bento or the nasu soboro don. They have good tonkatsu too. I don't care too much for their new karaage recipe but that doesn't stop me from eating it. God you made me hungry for Tampopo now!!!

              1. re: kobuta

                I wouldn't say Tampopo is great (I wish they'd go down a couple doors and take some frying tips from Mami!) but there are so few japanese greasy spoon places around for curry that I keep finding myself coming back to them. They put egg in many of their curry dishes, which I find slightly weird, so I often just ask for combinations that aren't quite what's on the menu-- they've always been accommodating. Their 'house blend' of spicy mayo is good with fried things, and the takoyaki are comforting. I think I've gotten rush orders a couple times, because the batter was still kind of soft (which is how I know they were fresh!), but they've also been quite good sometimes. I think once we asked for 'extra crispy' to avert undercooked, but I don't remember the outcome, unfortunately!

                1. re: another_adam

                  Certainly it may not be your preference but egg with a curry dish is not uncommon in Japan. I did try their teriyaki bowl today and must say that I was quite disappointed with the sauce. It tasted like hoisin sauce. However, the tenpura, karaage chicken, and tofu vegetable udon were all excellent. In fact, the chef Ito-san has reverted back to his original karaage recipe - which is quite good. He tends to experiment with new ideas and some work and some don't. Overall it works and keeps me coming back again and again.

            3. in addition to tampopo, i have also seen takoyaki on the menu at blue fin restaurant

              1. On a similar topic, in Baltimore, a couple of sushi places used to serve fresh baby octopus that had been marinated and grilled. This was not the cold, pickled baby octopus that I have encountered in various Boston sushi spots. Anyone seen what I'm looking for?

                1. I've also seen them (and enjoyed them!) as a special at Shiki in Brookline.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mizzduke

                    I second the baby octopus at Shiki. This is a great place.