After filling up our bellies (Ramen) and also having a little stretch of the leg (Market) – we made our way to the hotel (more on this later); we were staying closer to the middle of the island and away from Naha so were able to try something a little different in terms of restaurants, Ms. Buddha did a bit of quick research and decided on Ufuya – a 100 year old restaurant located in an old folk house.
For those worried about parking, don’t be, because there’s plenty, but by the time we arrived, there was already a line of people and the wait list was about 25mins – we quickly got our names on the list and shielded ourselves from the light drizzle.
During momentary breaks of the rain, I managed to have a little roam around and snap a few photos of the folksy décor and also old huts – apparently this place was owned by a massive landlord.
After about 20mins, we were called and got our table – the interior and lighting of the garden was a little tacky, although still nice.
English was sufficient (they seem to have enough overseas visitors) – and one of the more popular dishes here is Agu Pork – which is from pigs that are locally raised and unique to Okinawa. So obviously I had to go for the Agu Pork Tongue – which had a really nice firm texture that tongues normally have with a sweeter flesh than the pork you normally get in Hong Kong.
Next that came was a salad, but not just any salad, it was a Seagrapes salad – otherwise known as caviar of the sea! The texture is very similar to actual caviar and the favour absorbs the salad dressing really well with a hint of the sweetness that seafood has.
Another food that is very important to Okinawa and best known to be the reason for people living past 100 here is Goya – or better known as Bitter Melons. We went for the tofu and bitter melon salad and it was absolutely delicious! The bitter melons actually don’t taste bitter but instead just “fresh” with a hint of sweetness – a definite must have dish!
It was a great start to the meal!
Because we wanted to try as much variety as possible – we went for 3 shared dishes and then ordered a set of Agu pork grill to share – with the grill also came 6 side dishes.
From top left clockwise, the first dish was a marinated pork belly which was just unbelievably good! The fattiness was just right and the flesh of the pork used had an amazing texture. The next dish was marinated cucumbers which had a nice spiciness to it.
After that (top right) was tofu – which acted as a good little cleanser. The following 2 dishes were marinated seaweed that although nice, felt like it lacked a little flavour. The final dish that looked like ice cream was not ice cream but instead minced tofu – which had a very nice and strong soy taste and one of my favourites!
The main dish was the actual Agu Pork – which came with a nice little mini grill. The pork’s flavour was amazing, however, for Ms. Buddha and I, I would’ve prefer if it was just marginally less fatty.
As the first dinner of our Okinawa trip, Ufuya was an excellent start! The service was friendly and the quality of the food was an absolute delight!! Definitely a place to visit if you’re going away from Naha.