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  • ONLY in JAPAN

  • We're leaving the city of Tokyo and heading north on the Joban expressway.

  • 105 kilometers or about 75 minutes to a highway service area. It seems like an odd thing to do.

  • but Japanese service areas, written as SA on the maps are famous for serving unique local foods.

  • And this one in Ibaraki prefecture is pretty special. Welcome to Tomobe service area.

  • Travelers heading north often stop here for more than just the restrooms.

  • Inside is a food court serving some amazing Japanese food, but we are here for this!

  • Do you see it yet?

  • It's hard to miss, it looks massive. It's constructed of 16 generous slices of marinated pork.

  • Slightly sweet, slightly salty, topped with some green sprouts like a mountain all in a bed of rice and locally sourced cabbage.

  • Japanese highway service areas are incredible. But when you throw in a regional food challenge like that over there Mount Tsukuba -- Tsukubasan!

  • It's one of Japan's most famous mountains the observatory of the Kanto plains beautiful to gaze at.

  • and now to eat!

  • A mountain of meat on rice

  • Yea, that's pretty awesome and to help me out with this report, and to eat is my friend, Dean Newcombe.

  • How you doing guys. glad to be here. It's good to see you nice and hungry ready

  • I'm very happy to hear that because this is actually one kilogram of meat and rice

  • that's the monster, huh?

  • Yeah, it's big.

  • Now this food challenge does not have a time to it, but we might just add an element of suspense to this

  • Yeah, I'm super excited about this

  • Let's get our order in, and see what the meat mountain looks like.

  • There are four sizes of this dish called Tondon depending on the volume of rice and slices of grilled pork cutlet

  • The last one is why we're here the tondon Tsukuba-san, Mount Tsukuba and truly represents the area's largest peak

  • The model is quite intimidating!

  • and it looks more than one kilogram a picture of the actual dish shows a flatter Mount Tsukuba.

  • The model sure is eye-grabbing but underneath it says that the real dish will look, different?

  • This just adds a little more mystery to it!

  • Bottom line, 16 large slices of grilled pork in a bowl is nothing to ignore.

  • Dean and I ordered at the vending machine. one bowl with miso soup costs about

  • ¥1,700 or about $15.00 Dean paid with his IC card on his smartphone.

  • The tondon tsukubasan order is in keep your ticket for pickup for when they call your number, the chef fires up the grill

  • This is what is underneath the meat a mountain of rice covered in cabbage.

  • The meat is almost ready for the setting.

  • It's leaned up against the rice to create a rugged look

  • It's topped with some Negi onions and sprouts because Mount Tsukuba is a natural place!

  • Give your ticket to the staff when called.

  • Here's the set with miso soup.

  • Add a little Japanese mayonnaise if you want another dimension to the taste.

  • It looks almost like snow on the side of the peak. It sure seemed to weigh more than one kilogram

  • This definitely is going to be harder than I thought

  • Wow!

  • Game on! I set and started the timer for 15 minutes.

  • Itadakimasu! (translation: I humbly receive! / Let's eat!) on your mark, get set, let's get this done!

  • It's really good!

  • They gave us chopsticks, it might have been a little embarrassing to ask for a fork, but seriously, no one uses forks here.

  • But it would make this challenge much easier.

  • Dean flattened his Mount Tsukuba fast.

  • The pork is grilled just perfectly I really loved the taste of the grilled taste to it.

  • And the sauce is just it's a little bit salty but sweet as well.

  • Both: Yeah

  • After two minutes

  • It didn't seem like we'd made a dent in the dish at all

  • To get the rice and cabbage underneath you have to fight through the wall of 16 pork cuts.

  • Food challenges arn't as fun as i thought they would be.

  • You know I've done food challenges before once I ate this gyoza.

  • It was like 2 and 1/2 kilogram some like really juicy. Let's just say oily, fatty, meat

  • Stuck in a cakey like like bread. Yeah. I didn't finish that!

  • Very few people finish that right.

  • So today is a little bit easier.

  • That gyoza food challenge of 2014 is the number one trolled video on this channel

  • Don't read the comments like I did to prepare for your next food challenge!

  • that gyoza challenge has haunted me for years.

  • People would say why didn't you just picked it up like a baby

  • Well first of all you don't eat a baby! I simply couldn't let it go

  • I used a fork a knife to eat a meat pumpkin! and I still regret not finishing it.

  • At the halfway point, only seven and a half minutes in Dean hit his wall. are you done!?

  • Are you done or are you just taking a break?

  • Just, just chillin!

  • Was it over confidence? I think so, seven minutes left.

  • Every second count.

  • it really feels that now, seven minutes in like now wow, I can feel that I've eaten a lot.

  • As I'd say that was a big meal up until now anything past this point isn't a supersize.

  • Look at that look at the depth of that. It's like a hole fingers worth of rice there.

  • god help me!

  • I don't think I'm going anywhere, didn't I eat this one already?

  • I think I've eaten some of these already, they magically return.

  • When you hit the wall, it hurts more than just your stomach.

  • 4 minutes!

  • oh baby! this ain't good for our cholesterol, is it dean?

  • Tsukuba, you know, it doesn't look that big when you're driving around it

  • When you're eating Tsukuba, it's really big!

  • It seems a lot bigger and that's true of Tsukuba. It really does seem it really is bigger than it seems. Yeah, huh?

  • This trip originally started at Ibaraki Airport where we rented a car the other day to explore drive-through

  • restaurants and eat some incredible A5 Hitachi wagyu beef.

  • With food as our focus to travel. We also took in as much of the countryside as possible.

  • And before this challenge we went up Mount Tsukuba.

  • Cable car is the easiest way.

  • At the top is all of the Kanto plains before you views to Tokyo and even Mount Fuji on a clear day

  • We can stand on top of it but can we finish eating it? just two minutes remain!

  • I think you've got me on the rice

  • Yeah, I've been plucking away at it when you get tired. It's important to find your hidden higher gear!

  • in my case - greasy fast speed!

  • Looks impressive, huh?

  • We probably would have been better off with a fork and spoon

  • but part of this challenge is using chopsticks.

  • and your skill in picking up pieces of rice will be a new challenge when you get closer to the bottom.

  • But it didn't seem like we were getting any closer to the bottom though.

  • anyone can eat a lot of food, but defeating a challenge means hitting that wall your limit, and pushing through it

  • On the other side Dean looked defeated.

  • But I refuse to give up.

  • Too much talking not enough... I know what you're saying. Just pick up the bowl and dump it in your mouth.

  • well to be honest, I hadn't thought of that, chopsticks are not easy to use when speed is important.

  • There's a technique Japanese have for getting the last parts of rice out of the bowl, which I'll teach you at the end.

  • seven!

  • six!

  • five!

  • four!

  • three!

  • two!

  • ONE!!

  • *phone buzzer ringing*

  • Winner!

  • But we both lose because we didn't finish.

  • however It looks like I got more of the rice.

  • I just I felt like I was trying with the rice, but it just wasn't moving, you know, yeah.

  • There's a lot left but it's oily and separated very hard to eat like this with chopsticks

  • Dean had more in his bowl

  • We both lose but out of curiosity. We wayed to see who was the biggest loser.

  • Dean came in with 450 grams including the bowl.

  • My bowl weighed 411 grams.

  • That was a good meal

  • Good meal, but I was not satisfied with myself or my performance. I returned to try again the next day.

  • Dean doesn't know I'm here. I've come back to complete the task

  • We didn't do it the first time. Can't live with myself until I eat that whole thing! It's time to get serious.

  • No, yapping at the camera just focus!

  • We'll speed this up.

  • *dramatic music*

  • When you don't have a spoon the secret is to pick up your bowl and shovel it in with your chopsticks.

  • It's a normal technique in Japan. It's also polite to eat every grain of rice.

  • Mission: Complete!

  • If you liked it, hit that subscribe button! and check out another one of our shows.

  • don't miss my second live streaming channel, ONLY in JAPAN * GO

  • Check out location photos on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/onlyinjapantv

  • Mata Ne! (see ya later!)

ONLY in JAPAN

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日本のハイウェイフードチャレンジ★ONLY IN JAPAN (Japanese Highway Food Challenge ★ ONLY in JAPAN)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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