Sunday, February 5, 2012

Tonkatsu Sugi とんかつ杉   022-283-1968


Address:   仙台市若林区志波町18-16.  Near a ヨークベニマル supermarket.

Map:  Scroll to the bottom.
Lunch: 11:30 – 2:00 Dinner: 5:00 – 8:00
Closed holidays and Wednesdays.
I’ve passed by this restaurant a couple of times on the weekend and always saw people lining up outside.  I figured that was a good sign that it was a great restaurant.  
I walked in on a Friday evening and it was quite busy.  I was seated at the counter in front of the kitchen.  I was surprised that the menu consisted of only eight different offerings.  I went with the regularとんかつ定食 for 840 円. The set meal came with the usual: rice, cabbage salad, tsukemono (or so I thought), and miso soup.
The tonkatsu was very tender and tasty, probably the tenderest tonkatsu I’ve tasted, with no chunks of fat.  I believe that the reason for this succulent sow was that each piece of pork and shrimp were breaded at the time of the order.  They were not pre-made nor frozen.  I saw first-hand as a new order was placed and the chef would take out his tray of bread crumbs and place each individual pork cutlet (or shrimp) in the tray before plunking it in the deep fryer.  And the portion size was just right.  Not overly generous but I feel I got my money’s worth.

The sauce was just right!  Not too sweet nor too tangy, and not overwhelming.  
They served a lot of cabbage, in fact, too much.  That wouldn’t have been a problem but the salad dressing was similar to plain mayonnaise and had very little taste.  Because of that I left most of my cabbage behind.  The macaroni salad was just so-so, and the tsukemono was actually just raw carrot slices.  The miso soup was quite nice.  
I noticed that this is not a place where one lingers.  People were off as soon as they finished eating.  
This is a non-smoking environment and it seemed to seat about 25 people or so.  Free parking for about eight cars is way in the back, but be careful because the side street closest to 杉 is a one-way street moving away from the restaurant.
I have to be honest, though, I don’t know if I’ll be returning to   I’m recommending this restaurant because I did like the tonkatsu itself, but I was not wow’ed.  Because of the long lines of people I had witnessed, I thought I would be wow’ed.  But I wasn’t.  Perhaps you’ll be wow’ed.  At the very least, you’ll be like me, and just simply satisfied.

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