WHEN you start looking for a place to eat at past 11 p.m. on Saipan, your chances of getting a good meal is getting slim. After going around Garapan a couple of time in vain, we remembered this Japanese restaurant we had been eyeing for some time — the Umibouzu Japanese Restaurant on the second floor of Seven Stars store at the Paseo de Marianas across from the police station.
Umibouzu is your typical Japanese restaurant, with cushions on the seats and colorful Japanese lanterns hanging from the ceilings.
The half-drawn blinds gave us a superb view of the well-lighted Paseo de Marianas, although most of the businesses have closed for the day and only a few people were milling around.
My buddies ordered the $7 fried chicken with salad plus $2 for a serving of rice and miso soup, and sea food fried yaki soba which you can order in regular size for $9, or go large for $12.
I ordered spicy tuna with mayonnaise on rice for $10. Tea was served in tall glasses with ice cubes.
My buddy’s fried chicken was perfect — bite-sized crispy fried slices dipped in spicy sauce. Not a huge fan of noodles myself, I found the seafood fried yaki soba an exemption, the crispy fried noodles a tasty contrast to the seafood.
The main entrées for dinner range from $7 to $23 and includes beef steak, broiled prawn, tempura, seafood fry, fried shrimp or fish, short ribs, pork cutlet, chicken teriyaki, pork ginger, chopped vegetable sauté, pork cutlet curry, fried rice with kimuchi, and rice ball with sashimi.
You can also go for the don buri choices which include shrimp tempura on rice, beef steak, yakiniku, pork cutlet, or chicken with egg on rice.
Noodles available are ramen and fried rice, miso ramen, been sprout ramen, soy sauce ramen and cold ramen. You can also enjoy California roll and spicy tuna roll from $8 to $10.
If you feel the need to smoke, Umibouzu’s balcony is the place to go to.
By the way, if you plan to eat at Umibouzu, try to memorize the Japanese symbols for male and female. You’ll need it when you have to use the restroom. I can just imagine the disappointment in the face of my basic Japanese language teacher if he saw me standing outside the two open doors trying to decide which is for the females. I made a wild guess and has not discovered if I was right or wrong until now…
Umibouzu Japanese Restaurant is open for dinner only from 6 p.m. until midnight. All major credit cards are accepted. For more information call 234-5529. (This article was first published HERE)