Tonkatsu – a juxtaposition of a mouthful. Bite through a crispy deep-fried panko crumb to soft tender pork that falls apart in your mouth.

Tonkatsu is a classic Japanese dish, almost always plated up as a set meal with rice, miso soup, tonkatsu sauce (drizzled overtop here post photo!) and a decent pile of shredded cabbage.

Pork fillet or loin may be used, with options for a fattier rosu or leaner hire cut. This is then salted and peppered, lightly dunked in flour and egg, and finished with a coating of panko crumbs before being deep-fried and cut thick. Think german schnitzel vibes, but executed in its own unique way (tonkatsu was after all derived from European-style breaded fried meat cutlets in the late 19th century!).

We had our tonkatsu at the institution Tonkatsu Maisen Aoyama Honten, located in the back alleys of Omotesando in Tokyo – the line was out the door. This tonkatsu restaurant first opened in 1965, and boasts a number of stores locally in Japan and some even overseas. Tonkatsu perfection.

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