Braces Friendly Foods Restaurant Series | Takamatsu Tucson
There is a distinct smell as you enter Takamatsu—the smell of Korean barbeque. You can be seated in the sushi bar, Korean BBQ grill table or the regular table. Tonight we sat at the regular table and ordered from the regular and the sushi menu. There are just plenty of choices many with foreign names, which I dare to guess that not many locals would find appealing to order due to unfamiliarity. But being adventurous may have its rewards especially if you’re open to different foods.
I was craving the Soon Doo Bu so I ordered it. I was introduced to this spicy hotpot tofu dish while I was in Dental School in Los Angeles many years ago. Los Angeles is home to one of the largest Korea Town in the US and they have restaurants dedicated to just the Soon Doo Bu. I’m always delighted every time I get several Korean side dish appetizers (a.k.a. Banchan) and
Miso soup when I order any Korean entrees. I love them especially the pickled daikon (radish) & carrot; some are spicy though. I always munch on them while I wait for the entrée to come, but it is great to eat them with rice. The Soon Doo Bu Chigae (seafood variety) here is enough to satisfy my craving although it is not the best I’ve tried (comparing to the Los Angeles restaurants). The tofu dish is soft except for the little pieces of squid in there. The shrimp were a little tough too due to overcooking. This dish typically comes with a raw egg dropped into the hot pot, we’re supposed to stir it around while it is piping hot to cook it. I personally don’t like the yolk so I removed it and stirred the egg white instead. Place the contents of Soon Doo Bu along with the soup into the rice bowl and eat. You can also ask for milder or spicier dish if you like.
We also ordered the N.Y. Teriyaki Steak. I was not expecting this steak to be braces friendly but was surprised at how tender and tasty it was—perhaps we ordered it medium, not well-done. In addition, it was already cut up into bite sized pieces although I would cut it up in half for those of you wearing braces. Avoid the vegetables in the dish as they are crunchy and tough to chew on. Eat the steak with the provided white rice for balance in taste.
Lastly, we ordered the Shrimp Tempura Crunch sushi roll. The sweet eel sauce on the tempura flakes on the top surface makes the delicious flavor pop. This delicious roll is braces friendly despite the mini-crunch of the small pieces of cucumber within.
Koreans and Japanese like to drink hot sake with their sushi, today I ordered hot green tea to cleanse my palate and it works great.
- Soon Doo Bu Chigae: Braces Friendly. Extra Soft if you don’t eat the overcooked shrimp or squid.
- N.Y. Teriyaki Steak: Braces friendly, order medium not well-done. Avoid the vegetables provided.
- Shrimp Tempura sushi roll: Braces friendly.
- Miso soup: Braces Friendly. Extra Soft.
- Banchan Korean side dishes: Some are, some aren’t braces friendly. Eat with care.
- Green tea: Braces Friendly.
PS: Please cut up food into small bite sized pieces.
PSS: don’t forget to brush teeth and braces after eating.
Your friendly local Tucson orthodontist, Dr. Leo Toureno