As mentioned in my previous post, I am a bit food obsessed. It’s why I find some Japanese shows intriguing. An uncommon number of TV series feature food and weave stories (not recipes) around them. They can be off-beat and in some cases, downright peculiar.
Take for instance Kantaro: The Sweet Tooth Salaryman who gives up his well paying desk job to work as a book seller, just so that he can visit sweet shops during his sales rounds. Kantaro’s obsession with sweets is comedic and in the scenes where he eats, the food porn is XXX explicit. A trailer for the series is below. It’s all in Japanese but don’t worry about it. Subtitles and translations are possible but virtually unintelligible. The video makes as much sense with subtitles as without.
My absolute favorite TV series is Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories. Like Kantaro, the series is based on a manga of the same name. The stories revolve around the owner of a small izakaya and the people he serves between midnight and morning. Each episode opens with the making of a Japanese dish but the stories themselves, are more about human nature than food.
Of course, this is also in Japanese but if you stream it on Netflix, the subtitles are good.
Even if you don’t have Netflix, I recommend watching this trailer. It’s the opening scene and theme song. It will transport you to Tokyo and straight to the heart of the Shinjuku district. I watch it and I am there.
In Toronto but remembering Tokyo