Steam fills 3 floors worth of restaurant stalls in Okonomimura, madly grilling Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki for crowds of visitors and locals alike. Nestled between the bottom of Hondori Shopping Street and the Nagarekawa drinking district in Downtown Hiroshima, this “Okonomiyaki Village” grills layered savory Japanese pancakes before your very eyes on a teppanyaki hotplate, called Hiroshima-yaki for short. Packed with a lively atmosphere and friendly chefs, Okonomimura was built in 1992, moving from the original restaurant park that opened in the 1950s to revitalize the city. With humble beginnings as a snack before World War II, Hiroshimayaki later was eaten as a meal following the war. This iconic savory pancake dish made from cabbage, eggs, noodles, and seafood is served with a thin pancake base and topped with thick soy sauce, pink pickled ginger, and a sprinkle of aonori (seaweed flakes). Eclectic in its ingredients (that is, whatever you fancy), Okonomimura’s Hiroshima-yaki is especially delicious with plump local oysters caught from Hiroshima Bay, and elevated by a generous squeeze of juicy lemons, locally-grown.
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