I love Japanese food. Natto, okonomiyaki, sushi, and onigiri are just some of my favorite Japanese foods. I know how to cook and prepare a fair number of these myself, but sometimes I just wanna go out and have a nice sit down meal somewhere.
Down in Old Ellicot City, MD lies a hidden gem. An authentic Japanese cafe, filled to the brim with food and souvenirs: Matcha Time Cafe. The workers are all Japanese, as well, so if you’re looking to practice your conversational skills, this is the spot.
I’ve been coming here for a few years now. I’ve tried a fair share on the menu, but there’s one thing that keeps pulling me in: the pickled plum rice balls (ume onigiri). They are otherworldly. Pickled plum is very salty, but it has a sweet kick to it. The pickled plum is embedded in a ball of rice, which is then wrapped in seaweed. It is as simple as it sounds, but don’t let the simplicity fool you. This snack will fill you up, and it’s only $5.
Normally I get tea, but for the sake of Nerd Food, I got the Dragon Ball Z melon Ramune. If you’re not familiar, Ramune is soda that has a marble in it. You can get a myriad of flavors, though I like orange the best. The melon wasn’t bad — it didn’t give me any Super Saiyan strength, though.
So if you’re near Old Ellicot City in the near future, give this place a try. On special weekends, they even have ramen, which I’ve heard is amazing there. Itadakimasu!