I love Japan, I really do.
It's a polite society that takes personal responsibility serious, as a culture they don't accept the idea of the one, they don't scream loudly into their cell phones in public, they don't complain openly about their jobs-- in fact I am constantly impressed with the high level of professionalism in EVERY worker I encounter.
You know those commercials that show the KFC clerk or the Wal*Mart cashier who can actually do their job and seem happy about it and you wonder "where the heck are these people, certainly not in the places I go?" - they are in Japan.
Competition is welcome in Japan. They encourage you to be the best, here in the US we encourage everyone to get a trophy and just give you a big congratulations just for trying. It's pathetic.
Not so in the land of the Rising Sun.
But my friends to the East you have a long way to go in the advancements of both Hamburgers and Coffee. They have a few other flaws (smoking in restaurants would be a big one) but those two really stand out.
I spent the first five days there looking for a decent cup of Joe and had to settle for Starbucks-- here in the states I consider Starbucks burnt dishwater but over there its like liquid gold. Not because its better crafted, it's the same stuff, but its pretty solid next to the watery coffee I'd found everywhere else.
It's also HOT in Japan-- so when I ordered and "Ice Cohee" and the girl produced what looked like a three ounce cup I laughed and said I was going to need about seventy of those.
MOS BURGER was touted as one of the best burgers in Japan so I gave it a shot.
It's not a hamburger so much as it is a sausage patty pretending to be a hamburger. If you put pickles and mayonaise (yuck!!) on a sausage patty it's still a sausage patty.
Warning to my fellow obnoxious yanks heading to Japan- they love Mayonaise there. If you are like me and don't, be prepared to do some scrapping or master the "please no mayonaise" phrase.
Since returning to the US I've discovered a few places that claim to have great burgers back in Japan-- and I wouldn't be surprised, the Kobe Burger is one of the best I've had here in America and it's Japanese! So when I return in Dec '13 I'll be searching out a few of these new places.
MOS BURGER was passable, but unlike the Pizza I had it wasn't anywhere like the food back home. I don't expect Japan to do great American food, nor do I go to Japan and eat Hamburgers-- I want to eat authentic Japanese food-- with the exception of breakfast-- I want a good breakfast everyday, I NEED a good breakfast everyday.
And that's what I discuss tomorrow.