Porter Square is the closest thing that Boston has to a Japantown. A single building on Mass Ave houses a Japanese grocery store (Kotobukiya), a Japanese gift shop, a Japanese costume shop, a Japanese bakery, a boba tea shop, a sit-down sushi restaurant (Bluefin), and several casual food stalls specializing in various sorts of Japanese food (curry, ramen, and sushi, just to name a few).
We tried Cafe Mami on Friday night. Cafe Mami is tiny – it has a bar area that seats about 4 people and then two larger tables that fit 4-6 people each. That’s it. Oftentimes, they will seat two parties at each of the tables.
The food at Cafe Mami was cheap and good. For a mere $8, you get a salad, miso soup, and an entree. Cafe Mami specializes in rice dishes, and sells familiar dishes such as katsudon, yakidon, and curry.
Bryan ordered the curry with beef and a fried egg on top (sunny side up) and I ordered the yakidon. Yakidon is a soy-based marinated beef that slightly reminds me of Korean BBQ. I thought the flavor of my yakidon was perfect – both sweet and salty in a perfect way that makes the dish horribly addictive. In fact, the flavor of my dish was so addictive that I ended up eating more than I had planned (in other words, I finished the entire dish).
Bryan’s curry was also yummy. Accordingly to our friends, who go there often, the hamburger curry with the special tomato sauce is really good. The deep fried chicken tenders are also supposed to be amazing. The place really feels authentic, like you’re sitting in a little Japanese food stall in Tokyo.
Apparently the place is very popular and it’s often difficult to score seating. I guess we were lucky – we arrived early on a Friday night (around 6:15 PM) and didn’t have to wait for a seat.
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