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Momenbaru serves dinner with view

Date Posted: 2011-07-21

Ken Koja knows there’s more to a meal than just good food; he insisters it takes a beautiful sea and a good location to make people “want to enjoy themselves and our delicious food”.

He’s talking about Hamabe-no Kichen Momenbaru, his pride and joy restaurant that features Chinese-style cuisine, but a whole lot more. “Our restaurant is the perfect place to enjoy and relax in the afternoon after a lunch with the blue sky and blue ocean view,” he says, further calculating that “in the evening, this is the perfect spot to admire the sunset over the ocean.” The location’s at Toguchi Momenbaru in Yomitan Village, where the restaurant sits on his family’s ancestral property.

“During dinner,” Koja says, “you can see the night view with the stars.” Mix that with his dinner recommendation of spareribs with Chinese barbeque sauce for only ¥980, and you’ve the perfect deal. He recommends the spareribs be accompanied by some cold beer, awamori, cocktails or wine. Everything’s a possibility at Momenbaru, says Koja, explaining he caters to those wanting something that’s not even on the menu. All you need to do is make a request of the chef, and he’ll create whatever you want, if ingredients are available.

Lunch special sets include the Chicken Green Curry for ¥880, and that includes soup, salad and a soft drink. The shrimp with chili sauce runs ¥980, and also includes the soup, salad and soft drink. Okinawan fare is popular at Momenbaru, and that includes goya chanpuru and Yasai Itame, sautéed green vegetables that head up the vegetarian-style choices.

Summer season’s also the time for tea time, with Koja’s recommendation for trying Kokutou Ice, a specialty made with Okinawan black raw sugar for ¥250. Momenbaru is open daily except Tuesdays, with lunch served 11:30 a.m. ~ 2 p.m. Tea time is 2 pm. 5 p.m., leading up to the 5 p.m. ~ 11 p.m. dinner hours. The restaurant seats 36 inside, plus more on the patio and in the yard. Pets are permitted on the patio and in the yard, too.

Momenbaru is located across from the Torii Station back gate, on the left. There’s free parking for 10 cars, and English speaking staff is on duty from 2 pm. through the evening. All dinners are 10% off with an ad from this week’s Japan Update.

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