Japan Flavor Report: The Famous Blue Curry of Nico Nico HQ Cafe

Food coloring for lunch, plus dessert of "comment pancakes!"

Curry comes almost every color. Depending on ingredients it could end up red, yellow, or green. Japanese is most often brown. There are black curries and even somewhat mysterious white ones. Something you don't see everyday is blue curry, especially blue like the Mediterranean sea on a postcard or the blue of a GariGari-Kun bar. 

 

 

Nice is nice, but GariGari-Kun of the famous frozen snack is making a pun with "to love" (aisuru) & "ice" (aisu). "Samurai Blue?!" Uh, sure, that's totally a thing... I took the picture on the right in the train today.


The color of curry I saw and ATE for lunch was indeed blue. I was not about to be outdone by WalkerPlus as they journeyed to the Nico Nico HQ Cafe in Harajuku to sample the concoction, which looks more apt to be poured over the heads of Nickelodean game show participants than eaten. No, I know slime is green, but really, the only thing keeping this stuff in the realm of "resembling food" is its being on a plate accompanied by rice:

 

It looks almost civil on a white plate against the woodgrain table.

 

That's how I saw it, but this is closer to how I felt about it: 

 

A little more intimidating from this angle, no?

 

The first thing you may notice, aside from the CRAZY SAUCE (which the menu assures you contains normal food coloring) is that all ingredients, regardless of animal or vegetable origin, immediately become foreign objects when doused in this blindingly blue liquid. Those potatoes could be apples for all we know at first glance. I didn't even realize there was actual beef in there until I had a chunk in my mouth. 

 

  

I like the way the fat/oil in the sauce looks almost exactly like glitter. 

 

Luckily, this stuff does not taste like windshield wiper fluid. In fact, it was yummy-yet-standard, utterly conventional, Japanese curry such as you might find in a school lunch or hotel buffet. Not that every Japanese curry is the same by any stretch, but if there is some baseline, this was pretty close. I cleaned my plate and it looked so much like finger paint that I had to doodle:

 

Ok, sorry, I smiley-faced with my spoon, not my finger. Some semblence of propriety won out.

 

Guys, that wasn't very filling. I had dessert, which is great because it would have been a shame to leave the Nico Nico HQ Cafe without eating "comment pancakes." But wait, these pancakes look really normal! 

 

Snack-sized, but nonetheless plain Jane pancakes. If this were a video on the Internet, it would be on YouTube! 


Ah ha, but here's where the fun starts. For all the those who enjoy hamburger art projects featuring ketchup and mustard, this may be the one time the waiter tells you, "Please write [or draw] well," as he presents you with toppings. Of course, in the case of pancakes, chocolate and strawberry are more appropriate:

 

Ammo GET.

 

I wrote some subversive messages:

 

The あああ ("ahhh") did not come out very well, although I had fair warning from the waiter that the strawberry sauce was not the optimal writing material. "w" is the equivalent "lol" in English—it's the first letter of "warau," "to laugh." "w" piles up similarly to "lol" as well, see: "lololol." It is often seen streaming across NicoNico Douga videos in the live comments just as I have demonstrated on the pancake.

 

Altogether, a lunch that was rather lacking in nutrition, but rich in novelty. I leave you with a picture of the coaster on which my iced coffee rested.

 

By the way, the Tatsunoko 50th anniversary event is still going on. I stuck to my mission, but the place had a really good anime vibe while I was there thanks to cut-outs of famous characters being stuck all over the walls. 

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