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Wendy-san | Aug 13, 200511:13 PM    

We found ourselves in San Jose tonight and since we'd been to Halu Ramen recently we decided to go to Kaita in San Jose's Japantown.

I'd been there once for lunch a couple of years ago (it took over the old Ginza site). Kaita seems authentic and has some less-than-common dishes from other Japanese restaurants.

Tonight I had a wonderful tenzaru udon dish paired with tekka maki (tuna roll). The cold udon was some of the best I've had outside Japan -- it was very chewy, unlike the mushy stuff you usually get here. Along with the udon was okra, nameko (tiny mushrooms) daikon, sansai (mountain vegetables) and four pieces of tempura (shrimp, broccoli, eggplant and sweet potato).

My husband had a tasty ishikari nabe, which included shrimp, napa cabbage, salmon, scallops, chicken and other vegetables. Sort of like a yosenabe but with a miso base.

We shared a daikon salad, which I really enjoyed. Matchstick pieces of daikon and daikon sprouts with a ponzu-style dressing and fresh sesame seeds.

The bill (including one large Sapporo) came to $40 before tip. At 6:00 we were the only ones there.

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