Okinawa Tourism Information:OffStreetFancyTacoShopInaHotSpotinNaha

Off Street Fancy Taco Shop In a Hot Spot in Naha

post : 2014.05.13 12:00

 “GO! GO! TACOS”in a hot spot that has just opened in April, 2014, is not seen in a guide book, yet.

You walk along Ichiba Hondori Street from Kokusai-dori Street, turn right in front of Makishi Public Market to enter the off street locations, and you will find the shop.

The best way to get there is to use Makishi Public Market as a landmark to find your way, but the market arcade is a maze of streets.  Even local people get lost there sometimes.

But for tourists, visiting the public market full of Okinawan energy, walking along the off street in an Asian atmosphere, and even getting lost there is the real thrill of traveling.

When you finally get there, the shop welcomes you with a fancy appearance.


The inside of the shop is designed like an American garage. Mr. Katsuya Uehara, the shop owner blocked out a wall with corrugated iron roof, and built the interior together with his friend.

He has been collecting interior goods, lamps and shades as a hobby and enjoyed DIY to built signboards since he was in his 20s.  Now they are on display in his shop.


After working at his parent’s tempura shop for 10 years, he had a dream to own his shop and spent 2 years to start his own business.

To strike out on his own, he gave much thought to different styles of shops.  Finally he decided to start a taco shop because Naha area has no taco shops tasty for him and he can use the skill of working with oil that he acquired at the tempura shop.

For the two years until the opening of the shop, he collected money for start-up capital, looked for a store building perfect for his shop.  But for most of the time, he spent on developing recipes.

He was fastidious about making a taco shell.   

Generally we have hard taco and soft taco and the former one is somewhat main stream.
He wanted his customers to taste the texture of his favorite soft taco shells, so he chose soft taco for the featured menu item.  It took him 2 years for him to develop a taco shell that satisfied him. 

His taco shells are made with the mixture of five kinds of powders: hard flour, soft flour, cornstarch, cornflower, and tapioca.

Once the recipe of the mixture is determined, everything went smoothly.  He is a professional in using oil and making deep fry batter, which he got used to the procedure at the tempura shop.

For the taco rice sauce, he repeatedly improved the flavor with the base of onions and Tabasco and not too hot.  
He walked around the town and tasted the foods for research.
One day he wanted to look into garbage bins around other shops to find what had been used for taco rice sauce.

You can find many famous taco rice shops in the central Okinawa or Kin Town.
But it is happy news even for the locals that they can enjoy delicious taco rice in Naha City. 

Elderly ladies at Makishi Public Market are also delighted with it.

In the near future, he wants to make a showcase in an open space outside to start a take-out business for nice-looking tempura.

At the end of the interview, I asked “what kind of people would you like to come to your shop?”
“Boys. Please bring your girlfriend on a date,”answered Mr. Uehara.
“because his taco shop is an American garage style hideaway for men.”

Wow, also on a date, you can come here.
Please try the carefully-designed taste of taco!


Address: 1F Takamine Bldg, 2-9-6 Matsuo, Naha City, Okinawa
Hours: 11:30 to 19:30(LO:19:30)
TEL: 070-5410-5538
Closed on Tuesdays

Okinawa CLIP Photo Writer  Osamu Miyajima