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DOMA: A Great Variety of Food

By: Ann Summar

Date Posted: 1998-02-28

If you have been searching for a new restaurant, give Doma a try. Close to Kadena Air Base, Doma is a small restaurant with incredible food and low prices, sure to tempt anyone's taste buds. You can find Doma by going down Kadena's Gate 2 Street, turning right on Route 330 and turning right again at the stoplight in front of the club, Pyramid. If you travel a block down the small alley next to the club, you will come across Doma on your right.

For those arriving by car, there is a pay parking lot one block further down the alley to the left. Doma is open Monday through Saturday from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. If you would prefer to make reservations, please call 932-4815. Doma accepts both yen and dollars and is perfect for couples or singles looking for a relaxed evening away from home.

Doma offers a wide variety of food items. The menu includes steak, homemade Vietnamese spring rolls with a sweet, spicy and tangy sauce, Thai yakisoba, sushi, sashimi, pasta, pizza, salads, and Peking duck. Prices run anywhere from 1,400 and under for sashimi, 1,000 for a tender steak, and 400 and up for appetizers. One dish no one should miss is Doma's puchi, a small shrimp salad appetizer on a thin tortilla shell. This tasty morsel is made with a mix of pork and beef and covered with a terrific homemade Italian dressing. Sayoko Nakayma, Doma's talented cook, also makes an amazing pot pie, filled with scallops, mushrooms, carrots and sometimes beef. If you order this as part of your dinner, allow twenty minutes for her to cook this made-from-scratch dish.

Drinks are 200 during Happy Hour, from 7-8 p.m., or 400 and up during the evening. Awamori, Okinawa's native drink, is also available at Doma, as are the keep sake bottles for repeat customers.

When you enter Doma, please remove your shoes. You will have a choice of dining at the counter that encircles the kitchen, in the private Japanese garden tatami room reserved for groups, or upstairs at the counter or tables. If you choose to dine upstairs, you will need to order your food before you walk up the stairs. Here, you can enjoy your meal in the uniquely decorated lounge, complete with brass animals, antique wooden cars, a phonograph and exotic art. A nostalgic, relaxed feeling emanates from the establishment and you will soon find yourself admiring your surroundings. Soft jazz, classical and rock music spill from owner Hiroshi Nakamatsu's pride and joy, his speaker system. Dave Havely, Doma's manager and bartender, will take customer requests as well. There is also a projection screen to view laser discs and music videos.

Doma is one of sixteen locations. The owner, Hiroshi Nakamatsu, along with his older brother, Kenichi run these facilities. Doma has been open for two years and recently underwent a complete renovation. Hiroshi's business sense and enthusiasm are apparent when you enter Doma. 'We love Koza City and will continue to build in the area.' We love Americans and enjoy offering them entertainment and great food, he says. 'I love this business and will do it until I die.' Hiroshi genuinely encourages Americans to visit Doma, and assures potential customers that an English menu is on its way. Meanwhile, English speaking staff is on hand for any communication barriers that might arise. If you are lucky, you can even catch one of his performances. He is a delightful person who enjoys keeping his friends and customers happy. Loyal patrons continue to frequent his establishments because of his impeccable reputation. Former customers include bands Diamantes, Kansas, The Doobie Brothers, Cheap Trick and Japanese TV stars Yuki Uchida and Maki Crod.

Nakamatsu, who has lived in Koza are for over twenty years, spent four years in the Japanese military. He then traveled around the world, stopping in Mexico, US, Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and China. He settled down with his spouse, Sayoko. He brings his talents and discoveries to Americans and Okinawans.

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