BBQ in Tokyo

“Put meats into a grill, close a lid and wait until finish cooking by cheating friends with beer…”

Since I watched a such scene in American movie, this became my dream. “Someday I will enjoy BBQ in U.S. or Canada!” To know the details of BBQ, I googled BBQ many times. It said “BBQ is a kind of slow cooking food. Cooking meats for a long time with low power changes hard meats to soft juicy meats. Eat the meats with special sources.” Maybe with beer…

Three years ago, I realized it. I went to San Fransisco for attending GDC and met a friend of mine who lives in there. He knew my dream and invited me to BBQ. We went to a seaside park. I thought “Where is a grill? He doesn’t have it!”, but there were public grills in the park. Grills are in park, and public!? It was just cultural shock.  


After that, I enjoyed BBQ. I thought “Unbelievable. I am enjoying BBQ like Amrican movie. His suns grilled marshmallows. I never seen a boy who grills marshmallows in Japan. This is America…” Everything was new experience for me. I felt that I was a character in American movie.

I wanted to do this again after I came back to Japan. But, it’s difficult in Japan, especially Tokyo. There are no public grills. And I’m arrested if I used fire in public parks. So this episode was my last BBQ experience, until last weekend.

Last weekend. I and my colleagues were invited to a home party of a friend of us, who has been in Canada. He is Japanese, but knows how to realize BBQ in Tokyo. 


In Japan, I can’t buy grills like that I watched in American movie. So he imported a such grill from Canada. A grill in the U.S. park required charcoal, but his grill requires gas. (Because gas is easier to get in Japan than charcoal, and easy to clean up after cooking, this spec is acceptable in Japan.)


His grill has tires and moveable. But, at that time, his grill was in a balcony of his house. Because he owned his house, it’s OK. If I do this in my apartment, I will be kicked out from the apartment. 


Next time, we will do BBQ outside like river side. Some public spaces in Japan don’t prohibit to do BBQ. 


There are some Costoco in Japan, so it’s possible to get meats (like that I watched in American movie) in Japan. If you have never visited to Japanese market, you can’t understand what I’m saying. In the fact, almost all stores in Japan have only “sliced” meats. If you want to get “block” (I don’t know this is a correct expression in English), you have to a special shop. So he went to Costoco and got some big beef and lamb for us. 



In conclusion:

An imported grill, BBQ-acceptable public spaces and Costoco make me possible to enjoy BBQ in Japan. But, here is a problem. I don’t have a driver lincese to access Costoco. 

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