If you have been to Kichijoji’s famous shōtengai on the North side of the station, most likely you have walked past the long lines at Satou. The shop is famous for its menchi katsu, seasoned ground beef patties covered in panko and deep-fried. The line is infamously long. I have never seen Satou without a long line, so I was thrilled when Satou had a temporary stall in our local depachika. There were only three people in line so I joined the queue. The first two ladies in line each ordered about a dozen pieces. Typical for popular items like this. Most likely the ladies are not buying only for their own household but will share these with friends as Satou menchi katsu is very famous.
The menchi katsu (200 JPY) was disappointing as was the potato croquette (140 JPY). It was fine, but nothing special, and definitely not worth standing in line for. So curious why people queue for this. Because it is famous, even if it is not good? There is a steakhouse on the 2nd floor of the take-away shop that also is popular.
Musashino-shi, Kichijōji Honcho 1-1-8
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Try the menchi katsu place in Yanaka Ginza, I can’t remember the name but it is right in the middle of the block. And it too has lines. But I thought really delicious. In fact the whole street has some very interesting take away places. And there is one artisinal shirataki maker on a sides street nearby.
I often think this — that sometimes people queue because a place is famous or they’ve been told it’s the best, but they’ve never tried any of the alternatives, so cannot assess whether that’s true for themselves — and then, in order to justify their efforts/expense/time to themselves, they go ahead and gush about it and recommend it forward to others — and the myth perpetuates!
I think the menchi katsu place in Yanaka is called Niku no Satou. Curious about the shirataki. Is it at the tofu shop when you leave Yanaka Ginza and take a left? I’ve walked by before but never bought from there.
Kavey, that is the case I think with Sushi Dai and Daiwa Sushi at Tsukiji Market.
I stood outside this store for a long, staring at the queue and wondering whether I should join it. I did not in the end, but wished I did ‘cos the menchi katsu looked so good.
It’s not worth standing in line for. Consider yourself lucky for not wasting your time in line.