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Reservation is MUST! Pork Cuisine Restaurant MANMI
post : 2014.05.11 12:00
Okinawan pork culture, which is famous for mimiga (thinly cut pig's ear that is boiled or steamed), souki (tender pork rib), rafute (thick cuts of meat from the pig's belly that have been boiled to become very soft), is quite unique.
The richness of the food culture is amazing, underscoring the saying that "every part of a pig can be eaten except its hooves and its oink." The pork industry is thriving and has produced many pork brands.
Since you come all the way to Okinawa, I would highly recommend you eat Okinawan pork!
My special recommendation are the pork cuisines at “MANMI,” where you can enjoy every part of pig in sumibi shichirinyaki (charcoal-grilled), shabu shabu(thinly sliced beef boiled in water), traditional cuisine, or culinary creation.
Gatsu sahi (You can enjoy thick parts of pork belly in sashimi style.), which is shown on the front in the photo (\480)
A variety of side menus such as Island Vegetable and Island Tofu Salad, which is shown on the right in the photo (\850)
You can enjoy a brand pork called “Yanbaru Shimabuta”in MANMI.
Ten years ago Mr. Shogo Manna, the owner of MANMI, was searching for the concept of a restaurant he was going to open. Through the livestock breeder in the neighborhood, just 15 minute car ride, he encountered the taste of Yanbaru Shimabuta. Impressed by such a delicacy, there he decided to open a special cuisine restaurant of Yanbaru Shimabuta.
“Yanbaru Shimabuta” is a cross between the premium brand agu variety of pork, a traditional breed of Ryukyuan pig and black pig breed from the West.
Breeders feed the pigs on mineral water, fossil coral from Yonaguni Island, yomogi (felon herb), garlic, seaweed, honey, barley, etc. to produce a dainty-flavored meat accentuating the good taste of the fat.
Charcoal-grilled thinly-sliced pork back ribs which gives you the sweetness and richness of light, juicy fat.
“Until just a decade ago, every family keep a pig and eat the whole cleverly on New Year’s celebration. So Ojii(Grampa) and Obaa (Granma) can say names of every part of a pig, but professional chefs can't. That's disappointing. I wanted to get close to the wisdom of our grandparents,”said Mr. Manna.
It's how his challenge of providing every of 16 parts in a delicious manner started.
For example, pork offal called “nakami”in Okinawa was customarily boiled in a slaughterhouse, so it took him half a year to successfully negotiate to buy them fresh.
On top of that, for 1 to 2 years after opening his restaurant, a business style of pork cuisine restaurant was not familiar and brought not so many customers.
Yanbaru Shimabuta thick-cut tongue from one pig (\1,250) and deep-fried belly, small gut, large bowel, feet wrapped with collagen (shown on the right in the photo)
But in the meanwhile, he repeatedly produced and tasted samples to find out the best way of cutting and cooking. He took a hint from “boudin noir (A French dark-hued blood sausage, containing pork, pig blood, and other ingredients) to produce a sample of sausage. He increased the variety of styles you may eat Okinawan pig.
As the result, his restaurant has become so popular that many customers cannot make reservation easily in the busy season. But still now, he said this.
“Freshness is very important for blood and offal. I put vacuum-packed pork in icy water and leave it for dry aging at zero degree Centigrade for one week. Then fat will be fragrant and meat will be tender. Perfect!”
His passionate love for eating pork deliciously and sensitive care has never changed.
*nakamijiru (clear guts soup) Gukbap(\770) is usually the final dish to prepare the traditional cuisine of offal in gukbap style.
They love to use ingredients grown in Yanbaru (the forested northern part of Okinawa) and 90% of the ingredients are locally-grown.
“All the staff members are from the local area. We study and research how to enjoy eating pork. Please feel free to ask us to give you advice of how to cook and eat in a delicious manner,” said Mr. Manna. If you want to try special parts like blood or brain, please make a reservation by the day before. They will get one for you!
“For the most of my time in MANMI, I cook pork all the time,”said Mr. Manna. Attracted by such a character of him, many people have become regular customers.
MANMI, where the people who love Yanbaru and Okinawan pork, provides a very carefully prepared, delicious pork cuisine, is located about 20 minute-car ride from Kyoda Interchange, the end of Okinawa Express Way.
It is a good access from resort areas in Onna Village and Churaumi Aquarium.
Please savor the delicacy of Okianwan pork you can experience only here!
Address: 251 Isakawa, Nago-shi, Okinawa
Hours: 17:00-23:00（L.O. Food 22:00, Drink 22:30）
Closed on Tuesdays
Parking Capacity: 20 cars
Okinawa CLIP Photo Writer Aya Asakura