The Japanese world kuidaore roughly means to eat oneself into ruin. It’s something of a pastime in Osaka, thanks to the sheer variety of foods, including everything from piping hot street food to endless conveyor belts of fresh sushi. Here are the foods and activities you won't want to miss.
There’s a lot to eat in Japan’s most food-obsessed city. While Osaka is no stranger to Michelin-starred restaurants, street foods reign supreme. One local favorite is okonomiyaki, a savory pancake made with octopus, squid, shrimp, cabbage, green onion, and noodles. Another popular option, takoyaki, is the ultimate Japanese comfort food—bite-sized balls of batter stuffed with octopus and topped with Japanese mayonnaise and takoyaki sauce.
While udon noodles don’t come from Osaka, kitsune udon originated here. This traditional Japanese food is served with a slice of deep-fried tofu atop a bowl of plump noodles. Step into any trendy izakaya in Osaka, and you’ll likely see kushikatsu on the menu. The dish consists of breaded and fried skewers of meat and vegetables, served alongside a citrusy ponzu sauce. Since Osaka is home to some of the country’s largest fish markets, the sushi and sashimi here are some of the freshest around.
- Sample Osaka’s best bites on a street food tour through neighborhoods like Dotonbori, Shinsaibashi, Tenma, and Kyobashi.
- Learn to prepare sushi the traditional way during a chef-led afternoon cooking glass.
- Tour Osaka’s 200-year-old Kuromon Market to learn about the history of Japanese food and its staple ingredients.
- Take a cooking lesson right in the home of an Osaka culinary expert.
- Sample several varieties of sake, a traditional rice-based spirit, during a guided tasting.