Do You Know Nags? – Uncovering Nagoya’s Hidden Gems – Part 6

ByBert Wishart
Feb 28, 2024

Do You Know Nags? – Uncovering Nagoya’s Hidden Gems – Part 6

Whether you’re new in the city or are a Showa Gaijin, Nagoya is a city that always surprises. New restaurants, shops, and drinking establishments spring up all the time, and you can be wandering down an oft-trodden street and come across an ancient temple that you’ve never seen before.

We all have our favorites, our refuges, our places that we like to call our own. In this More Than Relo series, Nagoya residents share their recommendations so you can get to know this evolving city as well as they do.

Who: Karen Matsumoto
Where: Sekiyama Monjayaki

Karen moved to Nagoya as a teenager due to her father’s work and has been here ever since, but having been brought up on the outskirts of Osaka, she is perhaps the perfect person to be recommending a monjayaki restaurant.

The tacos monjayaki is much tastier than it looks

“My grandmother used to make monjayaki in a very classic style, so she would probably not understand Sekiyama and all its strange dishes, but I love it,” says Karen. Like a loose okonomiyaki cooked on a teppanyaki pan in front of you, monjayaki is a unique dining experience, but the range at Sekiyama makes it even more so. “There are so many monja to choose from; the squid ink monja and the tacos monja are both great,” explains Karen, “but my favorite is Thai green curry monja. It is very spicy, and my grandmother wouldn’t get it, but I love it!”

Where: 1 Chome-13-3 Nagono, Nishi Ward, Nagoya (map)
Tel: 052-581-0500

Who: Unshin Anazawa
Where: Local Beach (Near Irago)

Ushin Anazawa, from Chiba Prefecture, has been working in Aichi for just three months, but he has already found his own hidden gem. “I love surfing, and near where I work near Toyohashi is ideal.”

Ushin found Local Beach near Irago by chance, but he has fallen in love with the place. “Compared with Chiba, the water is much clearer and the waves are better,” Ushin says. “They are continuous, so you do not have to wait around for them. It can be at its busiest in summer, but I love it in early spring. It might be a bit cold, but the waves are perfect.”

Where: A few minutes west of the rest stop at Onishi-32-4 Akabanecho, Tahara, Aichi 441-3502 (map)

Who: Misaki Takayama
Where: Hitokuchi Gyoza Strike

Misaki Takayama came from Saitama to Nagoya 5 years ago for his work as an elevator engineer, but when he is not working he loves drinking, which is why he recommends Hitokuchi Gyoza Strike. In fact, when MTR met him, he had been drinking there at 11 in the morning.

Gyoza and beer, a great way to start the day

“The gyoza is so good. There are many types to eat, but the best are the garlic ones and the plain style. They go so well with beer, which you can drink from very early, and they are great value for money.”  Hitokuchi Gyoza Strike isn’t just gyoza though. “The niku dofu is amazingly tasty, and it is perfect with a beer at lunch time. And everything is maji yasui!”

Where: Nagoya, Nakamura Ward, Meieki, 4 Chome−24−8, Ichigo Nagoya Building, 1F (map)

Image: by MIKI Yoshihito via [CC BY 2.0] – modified
Image: By Bert Wishart
Image: By via [CC BY NC ND 2.0] – Modified
Image: via

About the author

Bert Wishart editor

Novelist, copywriter and graduate from the most prestigious university in Sunderland, Bert whiles away his precious time on this Earth by writing about popular culture, travel, food and pretty much anything else that is likely to win him the Pulitzer he desperately craves.

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