I finally went to Kokekokko in Little Tokyo last night, and I was pretty impressed. Ordered just about everything a la carte (they were out of skin), and was surprised at how good everything was.
The standard breast, thigh, and wings (regular and spicy) were quite good. The liver and heart were also really tasty, although the gizzard had a texture that was a little too creepy for me (sort of felt like the organ was fighting back when I tried to chew it). The meat-wrapped eggplant and zucchini were fine.
The greatest hits of the night were definitely the quail eggs, chicken meatballs, and chicken gyoza. Just fantastic, made me wish I had room for more. The meatball was like a piece of all-chicken bratwurst. Truly glorious, I can't say enough good things about it. The quail eggs were like hard-boiled egg-flavored olives. Makes me wonder if they are that good at Nanbankan, too.
The non-skewer items that we ordered (memory fails here, but I think there was a nori soup, ground chicken w/raw quail egg rice bowl, and grilled chicken rice bowl) were unremarkable.
Overall, very delicious, chicken-intensive meal. I really wanted to collect as many wooden skewers in the "spent skewer" cup on the table as possible. By the end, our cup spillith over with glistening sticks. It was great.
Now, the big question that I have came up while we were eating the meal. The servers gave us small dishes with maybe 2-3ml of shoyu. Not very much. I got in the routine of putting some of the amazingly hot mustard on my bird part and dipping in the shoyu. I ran out very quickly (of shoyu, not the mustard). When I asked for more (this happened a few times at the table), the servers agreed to get more, but they looked very saddened and generally bummed out.
This has me wondering - were we doing the equivalent of asking for A-1 or ketchup? My only frame of reference is that when I eat shabu shabu, I plunge the beef into sauces with wild abandon, to the delight (and general approval) of the restaurant staff.
Perhaps what is good for the shabu shabu is taboo for yakitori? I'm not sure.
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