Grilled stuff on a stick is common in Japan – at festivals, outside shrines, and in izakayas.
This picture of fish on a stick was a tasty treat of Tanabata.
Upon my second trip to Ueno, I surveyed the food carts and tried grilled whole scallops. The choice for sauce is salt or barbeque. I chose salt and it was accompanied by what is similar to crushed red pepper flakes.
But my favorite is Yakitori. Yakitori is a working man’s food on a Friday night. My first experience was near Hammamacho. There were tables outside, an open kitchen the size of my Weber grill at home and lots of friendly people consuming malted beverages. Since the menus were all in Katakana, I would survey what everyone else had and point.
In Noge, a section of Yokohama, I did enough pointing that the restaurant brought me a menu that was translated.
Last week, I brought some colleagues to the same Yakitori place and we really enjoyed the pork and green onion. The sizzling fat from the pork coupled with the crunch of the green onion is delightful. Even more so after some very cold beer.