A new Szechuan restaurant opened in Asakusa, taking over from Coco Ichiban Curry House. (Location: Nishi-Asakusa 2-26-10; Tel: 03-3841-7555.) Kyuteihinabeya specializes in the double hot-pot, one side spicy and the other side sweet/savory. For 2,800 yen, you can have the hot-pot all-you-can-eat dinner course, with refillable meats, seafood and vegetables. Be warned though, the seafood is of the frozen variety, and not very good. But the beef is quite decent – thinly sliced so a minute in the hot soup is all that is required to get it cooked just right. The highlight, of course, is the soup, which is brewed using 10 kinds of spices, including dried chilies and Szechuan peppercorns (the latter of which is noted for its tongue-numbing qualities). Business doesn’t seem too good, so better go before it closes down! (Note: no English menu, but lots of pictures to help you make your decisions.)
Yes, It’s been some time since I’ve written. It’s been busy, teaching English and all that. This weekend was a huge festival in Asakusa involving a shrine carried by men in fundoshi and wearing happi coats. Walking to work at 9am on Sunday morning seeing the Asahi cans strewn around the streets did not really add to the traditional ambience. My co-worker said that the festival went on to something amzing … but by that time I was at work.