Cafe Hiro's Pork Cutlet Curry - Cypress
So I'll mention it now: Café Hiro's may be the finest tonkatsu curry I've had since Tokyo.
First, there's the pork, cut as thick as the first Harry Potter book, then fried under a light panko-crust and with a small quivering piece of the fat still attached. The cutlet is great in and of itself--the perfect ratio of juice-bursting pork chop to golden-brown breading. And then there's the ocean of curry lapping onto the white beach head of rice--a flavorful sludge almost as thick as the peanut-sauce for Indonesian satay.
Though the spicing level is customizable all the way to scorching, I always go for mild. This, I've discovered, is where all the curry flavor, sweetness, and richness exist in perfect balance. And since curry has been fully adopted into Japanese culture as pizza has to ours, Café Hiro offers it with the required condiments of pickled shallots, fukujinzuke (pickled radish), and rehydrated raisins, all of which I use as prodigiously as red pepper flakes and parmesan on a slice of pepperoni.
Speaking of Japanese curry, have you seen this documentary by NHK's Begin Japanology? It's really excellent.
If you have a half-hour, watch it, be educated, and then be prepared to drive out to Cypress when you suddenly have to have it for dinner.
10509 Valley View St
Cypress, CA 90630
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