, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

As I’ve gone over previously, Okinawan cuisine is quite different from the food in the rest of Japan. Even though I knew this coming in, nothing could prepare me for the Okinawan fascination with tacos. In fact, taco rice, which is taco flavored beef served on a bed of rice, is a typical school lunch meal. Mr. Selfish and I, of course, had to try it for the sake of posterity.

King Tacos: The Originator of Taco Rice

Even though Mr. Selfish and I didn’t really enjoy the Kin Kannon-do Temple, we rather relished the idea of eating at King Tacos, the originator of taco rice, which is located nearby in Kin.

Nago Food 04Nago Food 10Nago Food 07Nago Food 08

We ordered a taco platter, as well as the traditional taco rice with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, and salsa. As odd as it sounds, I found it pretty tasty and definitely a bit like comfort food (even though I had never had it before). I mean – I love rice and I love tacos. Why not combine it? If you’re in Kin, I would definitely check out Taco Kings!

Taco Dog: A Bit of Genius

Outside of the Nakagusuku Castle Ruins, we found a food vendor selling taco dogs. Even though I enjoyed the taco rice, I found the taco dog to be a superior eating experience.

Nago Food 01Nago Food 02Nago Food 03

The taco dog is basically a hot dog wrapped in a tortilla with taco-flavored beef, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and salsa. It was a divine combination, and Mr. Selfish and I plan on recreating this experience at home sometime for sure.

Chura-Hana: For More Taco Rice and Then Some

Finally, we ate two dinners at Chura-Hana (111−1 Koki, Nago), which is quite close to the Ritz-Carlton in Nago. We, of course, ordered taco rice, because we had to try it at a fancier restaurant.

Nago Food 11Nago Food 12Nago Food 18Nago Food 19

It was pretty much the same as Taco Kings – taco-flavored beef, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, and salsa on rice. I guess you can’t get much fancier with taco rice.

We also ordered a sampler platter of Okinawan dishes.

Nago Food 20Food

The stand-out dishes were the goya (bitter melon), which is in the upper left-hand corner, the pork belly, which is the bottom left-hand corner, and the beni-imo (purple sweet potato) flan, which is in the bottom right-hand corner.

Mr. Selfish and I also tried the karaage, rice cakes with pork belly, the yakisoba, and the beni-imo croquettes.

Nago Food 29Nago Food 30Nago Food 32Nago Food 33

The karaage and yakisoba were just average, but the rice cakes and the croquettes were quite interesting. It seems that Chura-Hana is better at the traditional Okinawan dishes rather than the regular Japanese fare.

Nevertheless, Mr. Selfish and I ate at Chura-Hana twice, so I do recommend it – especially if you are staying at the Ritz-Carlton since they will drop you off and pick you up for free.

This is our last post on Okinawa. Next up is our stay in Tokyo.