Thursday, January 9, 2014

Brother Ken ブラザー軒 022-222-1171


Address:  仙台市青葉区一番町4-2-20.   Located between Hirose-dori and Jozenji-dori.  Walking down Ichibancho from Hirose-dori, turn right down the side street when you hit the 7-11 on your left-hand side, and the picture of Marilyn Monroe on the right.  Brother Ken will be on your right-hand side.
Map:  Scroll down below.
Open from 11:30 am till 8 pm, but lunch is till 2 pm.  Closed Thursdays and holidays.
Like many of you, I’ve walked by the area between Hirose-dori and Jozen-ji dori a thousand times, but I never noticed this restaurant, which is surprising since this restaurant has been in existence for over 100 years.
Brother Ken, which specializes in Chinese cuisine, was recommended to me recently by my student, Chiaki, who seems to know a thing or two about fine dining.  
Upon entering, it appears as if you are in a hotel lobby rather than a restaurant, as there are no noticeable restaurant-style chairs or tables in view, but instead sofas and coffee tables.  The hostess guided my wife and me to a small room in the rear with about seven tables.  As we were escorted to our table, I noticed a separate dining room, as well as a staircase leading up and down, giving the impression that this restaurant is quite spacious.
Whilst perusing the menu, disappointment was soon met for a couple of reasons:  
1) The primary lunch set, which consisted of pork, was sold out.
2) The secondary lunch set, which was not sold out, consisted of fish.
This was fine with my seafood-loving wife, but this severely limited my options.  The a la carte menu offered a vast array of dishes, so I considered ordering the karage chicken (840 yen) and perhaps a side platter to go with it, but I knew the cost of ordering two separate dishes would not only up the price, but may not be worth it as I am not a big eater.
Luckily for me, I am married to a very kind and thoughtful lady.  She said, “How about if we order the third lunch set (1575 yen) and you order the karage chicken, then we just split everything?”
I love you, baby!
The lunch set my better half had chosen came with a choice of yakisoba or Chinese noodles, hors d’ oeuvre, a Chinese dumpling, fried spring rolls, and a dessert.  My wife asked for the yakisoba.
The hors d’ oeuvre was a tangy mix of pork and salad.  While the portion size was rather small, it was quite appetizing.


The karage chicken was tender and full of flavor, although the breaded-battered coating could have been just a bit crispier.  Still, I was quite satisfied.


The yakisoba serving was generous and tasted quite nice, despite the hint of a seafood taste.  No wonder, as shrimp and squid were added in the mix.     


The fried spring rolls were OUTSTANDING!  I broke apart a bit of the fried wrapping and I found it to be super crispy and savory in its own right.  The succulent flavorings of the ingredients inside just made it all the more delicious!  The accompanying Chinese dumpling was quite large and also scrumptious!  I would have gladly requested another order of this platter had I a bigger appetite.


I didn’t touch the desert that came with the lunch set, as it didn’t look too appealing to me, but my wife enjoyed it.


In fact, she stated, “I would definitely come back here again!”  
So, in a nutshell, that about says it all.  
In addition to their Chinese dishes, Brother Ken also offers a variety of curries, omelets, and desserts.
I’ve mentioned this restaurant to a number of Sendai-ites who have heard good things about it.  I don’t think you would go wrong dining at Brother Ken.

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