Kani Doraku Dotonbori Honten: House of Crab
Hello Everyone! Today, we're taking a trip to Osaka, Japan. This review will be about Kani Doraku Dotonbori Honten, your one-stop shop for all things crab. I came here with my family and everything had crab in it! Whether you prefer something hot, cold, solid, soupy, or fried, you're bound to find something to eat.
They have a few branches in Osaka and each branch can be identified by the gigantic 12+ foot crab figure dangling above its entrance (see above). It sounds terrifying but it's actually kind of cute.
Anyway, I think that's all I want to talk about for now. Overall, I'd recommend going to Kani Doraku, especially if you love eating crab.
Honestly, there was so much food so I won't go in any particular order. Let's start with the Crab Chawanmushi (see above). This was delightful. The meat was shredded to the point where you could see the thread-like fibers of the crab. It sits atop a silky bed of egg custard perfection. Savory but light.
Next, we had some Crab Croquettes (see above). These were just okay. There wasn't a lot of crab and it seemed like there was a lot of fluffy potato filling. It didn't taste bad but I think the crab flavors were too subtle/weak on this one.
Then, we had some Crab Futomaki (see above). These were quite good. I had 5-6 pieces. It doesn't sound like a lot but Futomaki pieces are huge! The literal translation for Futomaki is "fat rolled sushi", which, to me, is a very accurate description of this dish.
The Crab Gratin with Crab Sauce (see above) was pretty good too. It's quite rich and cheesy but I guess that's what a Gratin is all about! A Gratin is a dish with a lightly browned crust of breadcrumbs or cheese. The cheesy flavor was a bit overpowering but I still liked it because the crab-cheese mix was an interesting combination. This might be worth ordering if you're curious.
We also got a few Crab Sushi pieces (see above). The quality seems pretty good because the meat is so fresh and sweet. The Crab Sushi is a very standard dish. If you want to conserve precious stomach real estate to try more dishes, you can opt out of this dish.
My favorite dish was the King Crab Karaage. Before we move on, I need to warn you that this dish borderlines #NSFW content (as you can see in the picture above). Honestly, there's not much I need to say about this dish. The gigantic King Crab legs are deep-fried and served with a lemon. Use the lemon to tame and complement the fried exterior! At first bite, you'll notice the meat inside still steaming, its meat exuding with sweet and succulent flavor.
This is a must-order at Kani Doraku.
We also got some Steamed Egg Custard with Crab (see above). I don't know why this is different from the Chawanmushi but I would probably pick the Chawanmushi over this because it has more crab meat.
Some of us got the Hotpot option, where we could cook the crab legs (kani-shabu) ourselves in a boiling pot (see above). This was a fun option so I'd definitely recommend it. The portion size is also quite enormous. Look at all those crab legs!!! For your convenience, all the legs are already cracked to ensure ease of access to that luscious crab meat.