Fresh seafood, Okinawan-style
The name of this little restaurant means “fish shop” in Okinawan dialect. It’s well named for several reasons. Uminchu is located inside Toya fishing port in Yomitan. They have the freshest sashimi I’ve ever tasted; to find fresher I imagine you’d have to board a fishing boat. On your way to ordering, you’re sure to pass tables of their staff slicing up all kinds of ocean creatures.
Seating is at unassuming picnic tables, and their customer base seems to be a mix of working class locals and tourists. Their Okinawan-style tempura is what most people seem to order, and it’s made to order from freshly caught fish, squid and seaweed.
Their prices are very reasonable. Fresh cooked tempura is 60 yen, cheaper than supermarket prices! The low prices also mean you have to write down your own order and hand it to the cashier. The order form has English on it, so Japanese skills aren’t required. The takeout sashimi is also cheaper and fresher than any supermarket fish I’ve tried.
The menu is quite small, and it’s all seafood. The hours of operation are 10 am to 4 pm for the full menu, and they keep serving tempura until 5:30.So it’s an ideal place for grabbing lunch or an early dinner.
If you like eating seafood in a swanky restaurant, complete with jazzy tunes playing and menus that come in a leather book, then this place probably isn’t for you. Howver, if you want to try an authentic Okinawan dining experience, complete with noisy cats and signs advising you not to feed them, then do yourself a favor and try Uminchu.
MONDAY – SUNDAY 10:30 am – 4:00 pm
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