Monday, April 11, 2011

Marukame Udon

If you're an Udon lover like myself, then you will surely like this "Cafeteria-style" Udon restaurant, Marukame Udon. Located on Kuhio Ave (Waikiki) in the old Jack in the Box, this place is big and poppin'! We went early around 530pm and didn't have to wait in a long line, but when we left, around 630pm, the line was out the door! I really want to love this restaurant, but the fact that it's located in Waikiki with limited street parking and no private lot, is a medium-size downfall.

On the upside, it's quick and easy to order your food and you get it almost immediately. What I really like are the many options of sides- different tempura to choose from, like Vegetable Tempura, Shrimp Tempura, Mushrooms, Sweet Potato, Fish Cake, and Asparagus; and also 3 different types of musubi on the side- Umeboshi, Salmon and Konbu. As some other side options, you can also pick up a spam musubi or some inari (cone sushi) as well. Now, this is all cafeteria-style, so they have to be able to keep the food coming, thus the food isn't always hot or as fresh as a regular restaurant would make your food upon order. That was a big downfall for me. But if I was in the area, looking for some good udon, I would definitely think of this place. Not so bad pricing I'd say, but I wanted to try all the sides (as the foodie I am) and my share was about 15-20 bucks. That's udon, drink, about 5 diff tempura, and 3 musubis (konbu, salmon and Umeboshi).

Bottom line: If you are in Waikiki (with no car to park), craving decent "fast food" udon at a decent price with lots of side options, check this place out!

PS- Forgot to mention they make their own udon! Personally, I don't think I'll like any udon place as much as Jimbo's. I'll have to do a separate post on Jimbo's, but I love the fact that you can order thin noodles, which are a little fatter than ramen, but skinnier than the usual udon noodles. Their combos are the perfect balance of rice and udon, not to mention their tempura is my favorite. My other favorite thing about Jimbos? Their udon broth is unlike any other I've tried- smoky and flavorful. I never leave a drop!

Anyway, let's get to some Marukame pics, before this post becomes JIMBO'S UDON! haha.

A huge plus- they promote clean hands before eating!!

Different Udon- range from Curry Udon, Bukkake Udon to Cold Udon.

My meal- Niku Udon which is Udon with tender slices of beef on top- very good and tasty!
3 types of musubi, cone sushi and assorted tempura.

Niku Udon with Eggplant Tempura, Vegetable Tempura and Umeboshi.

My Tempura- Sweet Potato on skewer, 2 Mushroom Tempura on skewer,
Asparagus Tempura, Fish Cake Tempura, and Croquette/Cone Sushi.

Niku Udon!

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