The Quest for Pizza

If you have been to Japan already you might have realized that finding proper pizza, the kind you’re used to in Europe, can be a frustrating task.

Of course, when you come to Japan your primary goal will be to stuff as much Japanese food into your mouth as humanly possible, a noble goal since Japanese food is delicious, mostly healthy and easy to get accustomed to.

But sometimes you might find yourself wishing for a pizza for a change only to realize that the Japanese have successfully japonized their pizza. It doesn’t really taste like pizza, the crust is flabby and if you order one from, let’s say, Domino’s you easily pay ¥2000 for a size that they claim is perfect for one person but let’s be honest, that’s only correct if that person has the stomach capacity of a three year old. For everyone else the pizza is ridiculously small.

Now, does that mean that its impossible to find good pizza in Japan? Despair not, for even though I can’t speak for the rest of the country, at least in Osaka there’s still hope, even though in a rather unexpected place.

They have Italian desserts, too. We have yet to try those.

They have Italian desserts, too. We have yet to try those.

That place is Yodobashi Camera, the giant electric appliances store you cannot fail to notice when coming out of any one of Umeda’s many stations. There are many good reasons why a visit to Yodobashi is worth it – their display of 4k TVs, high quality cameras and gaming equipment is pure eye candy – but what does a pizza place do in an electronics store? Basically only five floors of the giant building are dedicated to electronic gadgets (one of them underground) after that we have a lot of fashion and sports equipment shops and finally, on the 8th floor you have a floor dedicated entirely to restaurants. That’s quite common for other Japanese department stores as well. For some reason this is the place where you’ll find a number of places with high quality, reasonably priced western food. On our first visit we tried the burger place Blah and weren’t disappointed, this time we tried the Porchetta next door.

They make the pizza fresh from scratch and use an actual wood-fired oven where the pizza is burned right next to the open flames, which is simply the best way to make a pizza. The crust is paper-thin and crunchy they way we like it, they’re generous with the toppings and you can get a properly sized pizza for less than ¥1500. Plus, the pizza was really good. I had one with mozzarella, onions and a peppery Italian ham while UlfdieFee had a pizza with a basil sauce instead of tomato sauce, that I can definitely recommend.

Mouth-watering pizza with UlfdieFee's hands for scale.

Mouth-watering pizza with UlfdieFee’s hands for scale.

Good pizza places do exist in Japan and as long as they do I will find them. For now, if you’re looking for some delicious pizza in Osaka, look no further than Yodobashi Camera.

2 thoughts on “The Quest for Pizza

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