Lunch today marked two strikes in a row on consecutive Mondays. Granted ordering "pasta" or "Italian" here you are always taking your life in your hands, I have gotten a bit lax as of late. Take last Monday for example, I decided to check out a new pasta restaurant around the corner and actually, the badly shot photos of what was on offer looked kind of tasty. So I ordered a meat sauce with eggplant pasta, because meat sauce with eggplant is one of the basic pasta varieties in Japan, a measuring rod if you will. Well let's just say that if Japan experiences a dairy shortage in the next little while I will know where to point the finger. They must have used a can of cream in the sauce, even dousing a little on top of the finished product in a show of ribbon artistry. Gag. It was tough getting through it and I have been known to enjoy the microwave pasta from AM PM as well as the 300 yen pasta at Saizeriya, so you know it was alarming. Not only had I just spent 1000 yen on some very suspect pasta, my stomach felt even worse for the ware.
Strike two occurred today. We were on our way to pick up bento and were tempted by another new Italian place. Well fuck me, if that place was Italian I must be Japanese. After being lured in by the full menu outside, we found that the lunch menu had four choices of ick, ick, ick and a Japanese dish (?!). I went for ick 3, a pepperocino pasta with bacon and seasonal vegetables. I picked out the nasty looking hunks of bacon and started in on the rest. I think the pasta sauce consisted of chicken broth with some oil, salt and pepper mixed in. Great I thought, here we go again. I was also unaware that bits of corn, celery, what looked to be a tomato skin, thin slivers of garlic and one possible asparagus stalk were seasonal vegetables and said as much in a loud voice until the beau shushed me.
Not only do I detest spending money on questionable food, I resent the calories and that I now have to wait until dinner time to eat something decent. Pasta in Japan is a gamble but I've been so lucky recently I let my guard down. I think the key is to avoid any places that don't look either expensive or have cheesy Italian decor, but it can be so hard sometimes, these Japanese places are getting wily. I know it's immature but I am now calling the kind of pasta exhibited in A and B above, poosta.