We drop off our new Tanuki statue at Sunroute and head right back out. We want to check out that 8-bit Bar we spotted the other day and play some old school video games. There was a ton of stuff in that area too, shouldn’t be hard to find good food.
We spot a place that looks good with a happy cow statue outside.
We peek inside and it looks fun. The hostess asks “Bbq or sukiyaki?” We don’t even know what sukiyaki is so we opt for that. She takes us upstairs where there is an open seating area with several tables. It’s the low style of table that you sit on the ground in front of. All of the tables are filled with locals, yes! That’s always a good sign. Hmmm is this some sort of Japanese hot pot place?
They don’t have any English menus and we have no idea what we’re doing. Our server also doesn’t speak English. We’ll figure it out! Two highballs please. Huh? Point at the poster on the wall. Black Freezing Highballs
We scan the menu with the google translate app and our camera. Yeah, I think it’s hot pot and you order sets of meat. The prices probably indicate quality? One line translates as ‘Hiroshima Beef top loin’. Try that I guess? We pick 2 different meats and are ready when she comes back to the table. Ok she’s excited, I think we did something right.
She starts dropping stuff off. A large cast iron pot. 2 raw eggs. Sugar. A small tea pot of water. A massive pot of soya sauce. A glob of.. fat?
Then she comes back and brings raw meat and veggies. She can tell we have no idea what’s happening and offers to show us (charades style since we don’t speak each others languages). She takes the round ball of lard and rubs it around the pot. Tells us to crack the eggs in our little bowls and beat them. She puts two strips of meat in the pot. Pours soya sauce on them and then adds sugar. Cooks that up and tells us to put it in the raw egg. Ahh… ok. Yum!
While we eat that she builds a little veggie temple in the pot out of all the veggie ingredients and tofu. She adds a ton of soy, some sugar and then meat around the edges. She motions for us to let it boil down then add meat after as we want. Awesome, thanks! This looks amazing. We wait for our sukiyaki to boil down
So it is basically a Japanese hot pot. This rules because we love hot pot. We let the ingredients all cook together in a little stew and then serve it up into our little bowls over some rice. It rocks! Everything you want in one place. We get some beers to go with it.
It’s delicious. The sauce is so easy, just soy and sugar, but the ingredients come together beautifully. She brings our other meat out and we ask for more veggies and raw eggs. Of course! We run through the whole operation ourselves this time. Prepare a temple of veggies. Add the sauce. Line the walls with meat. Boil it down. Beat an egg. Add rice.
Bazaam! This one turned out a little thicker. It’s so good. I love cooking the beef and veggies right to your liking.
Well stumbling upon sukiyaki was a nice surprise. Authentic Japanese hot pot, check another foodies box off we didn’t know to check. Alright, time for the…
8 Bit Bar!
Ok, I’m pretty sure this is going to be our new favorite place.
We go in and descend to the basement passed some 8-bit decor
We step in and the place is empty since it just opened. The bartender is getting things set up. We sit at the bar and he brings over menus. One side has a list of games and the other a list of cocktails. Super Ballercom! It’s all in Japanese though so we ask the guy for a little help. “Do you have Contra?”, “No. No Contra”, “No Contra!!!??” I spin around and flip a table over in disgust. Fine, I will not defeat the vile red falcon today. I will not consider myself a hero. Ok, ok Queenie asks for Dr. Mario. Yes!
It’s 300 yen to get set up at the bar with your own system. You get one game at a time and it’s infinite plays. You can swap for another game whenever you want. $3 infinite plays? This place rules!
What the hell? Queenie is insanely good at Dr. Mario?! She kicks my ass every time. I should have known, given her candy crush
addiction mastery that she’d be a master at this too.
We play a few rounds and I get destroyed in each one. She’s a Dr Mario telepathic ninja. We order up a few more cocktails and ask the bartender for a new game. He takes me to the wall of games and I start browsing. A lot of these I don’t know, must be local Japanese hits. I just ask him for a selection of his faves to try out. He quickly reaches in and gets a few. Oh now we’re talking, Mario Kart! He swaps out the NES for a SNES. Game on!
Still got it! First place with Toad
Whoa they have N64 here too?
Alright time for another classic. You ready to get your ass whooped, Narcopiggy?!
There’s a giant tv playing trippy animations that go with the house tracks that are playing. The music is kind of amazing. It’s like 8 bit auto-tuned mashups of classic hits, mostly 80s. Where did they find all of these? I like the random Michael Jackson poster.
We get a hippo game too. You push the teeth in and hope not to get your fingers bit.
Alright Queenie, let’s do this! Classic match up. China vs Japan!
Sumo gatling palm for the win!
Need a blood type A transfusion? I know a guy.. Whoa, Zangief is 61?
While we’re sitting there people start pouring in. There are a couple guys at their own table caught up in a heated soccer match. Another group gets a whole side room to themselves and order up everything on the menu with some drinks and an N64. This place is fun.
A group of business men come in too with some hotties. They grab the jenga and play right on the bar. They’re wasted, dancing and trying to kiss the girls. Hmmmm.. the girl next to me seems super messed up actually. She has leopard eye contacts in. She’s kind of stumbly and almost bails getting back to her stool from the bathroom. Ahhh wait.. are these prostitutes?
We play for a bit longer and join in some 80s sing alongs with the prossies. Yeah, of course I know the words to We Built This City! Business Guy high fives. We play a few more rounds and things start to die down. How long have we been here? The N64 party has left.
We conquered the 8 Bit Bar. What a fun time, why don’t these exist State-side?
We exit back to the steps and I spot an interesting photo I missed on the way down here. Wasn’t that our bartender? Cool sneaks bro
On the way back to Sunroute I find a manga on the street. “No, no Bee, no”, but I pick it up anyways. Seems to be a story about some detective or voyeur or something. Oh it’s racy!
We hit the family mart for some nightcaps and snacks. A couple of ice cream treats do the trick. This one is a taste explosion, cookie on the outside, ice cream and chocolate nuggets inside.
We pack up our stuff since we’re leaving in the morning. That tanuki statue takes up a fair amount of space, uh-oh. Queenie busts out a foldable bag she brought with her and we stuff it full of tanuki and souvenirs. Oh man, I see a lot of taxis in our future. We’re not really backpacking at this point. Maybe we over did it on the Japanese goodies. But there’s so much fun stuff here! Now we have 2 handbags to manage too.
The room isn’t as scalding hot as it was last night thankfully. Aside from that the Sunroute has been an excellent place to stay. Comfy bed, a naked neighbor, and a spectacular location to explore the Peace Park, Miyajima and downtown from. I really like it here in Hiroshima, it has a nice relaxed pace to it. Not too overrun with tourists and what looks like a ton of great food and bars. We’ve definitely settled into a more comfortable cadence on the back end of the trip and Hiroshima matched it perfectly.
Excited about tomorrow though, we looked up a place that sounds impossible for us not to like called Okunoshima. It’s an island in the Inland Sea that had a facility that was used to produce poisonous gas during WWII. Now it’s inhabited by hundreds of bunnies! Something for everyone. We’ll hit that on our way to a Bob recommendation: Onomichi!