It’s no surprise that some of my favorite dishes that I enjoy eating the most, come from one of the countries that I enjoy traveling to the most, Japan. But getting authentic Japanese is not an easy task, especially here in Philadelphia. Now I’m not about your fancy and often overpriced Hibachi style restaurants, nor the corner sushi spot, but authentic Japanese comfort and street food that brings you as close to Japan as possible without buying a $1500 plane ticket. My favorite place where you can find me eating at least once a week is Maido!, located just outside of the city in Ardmore.
Serving as one part market, one part restaurant, Maido! is the only Japanese owned grocery store in the greater Philadelphia area. Whenever I step foot inside, I always feel that warmth of being in my favorite mom and pop restaurants in Japan. With a focus on bringing the customer and authentic experience while sitting at the eat-in lunch counter enjoying dishes like Okonomiyaki, Yaki-soba, Katsu Don and of course my favorite, Katsu Curry. While enjoying your meal, just like with restaurants in Japan, you’ll be able to watch television programming beamed via satellite, which often consists of Sumo tournaments, baseball and other NHK programming which is Japan’s national public broadcasting organization.
The supermarket portion of the business if stocked full with everything that you would find if you were actually in the country, from fresh produce, food and snacks to Japanese toys and trinkets (and yes, Hello Kitty related items too). So if you’re looking for an authentic experience on a budget, then definitely check out Maido!, you won’t be disappointed.