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FEATURE

A variety of genres and characteristic tastes Addictive Fukuoka Curry

※In order to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus, some stores might only offer takeout and delivery or have changed business hours,  please check before you go and please cooperate by wearing a mask and following cough etiquette, disinfecting and washing your hands during your visit to the restaurant.

From spiced curry from India, the birthplace of curry, to curries from Asian countries, European curry, and curry at restaurants in great locations, I will introduce a variety of curries that you must try at least once when you come to Fukuoka.

【North Indian curry】

◎Jyoti Hirao store

Tasty spice curry and naan combination

Indian curry is well known throughout Japan. The ingredients and seasoning of the curry are said to be different between the latitudes in the north and south of the country. The curry that may come to mind when you hear“Indian curry”, a combination of spiced curry and kiln-fired naan, is a curry from the North Indian region. Because of the cold climate, it is characterized by a rich flavor made with the pungent spice garam masala, milk and fresh cream.

“Jyoti Hirao”, located on Sanso Street in Hirao, opened in 2011. It is an authentic Indian restaurant with a main chef who was trained in a Qatari restaurant. The curry set menu offers a variety of flavors, based on the four flavors of onion, tomato, mixed, and spinach, with a variety of ingredients such as chicken, mutton, and fish, and spices and chap masala (chopped onions) added for a finish that increases the tastiness of the curry for you to enjoy.

4 different bases made with about 20 different spices.

When asked for his recommendation, the store’s owner, Mr. Hirose, replied, “The best is the Butter Chicken Curry. The sweet and spicy curry that goes with the naan and the savory chicken that is grilled over charcoal in the kiln every morning are a perfect match. The Spinach-Based Cheese Curry is also simple, but the mozzarella cheese adds depth to the curry’s flavor and goes great with the naan.”

▲ A-set 820 yen. The tomato-based butter chicken curry comes with a salad with homemade dressing and lassi.

Jyoti offers authentic Indian curry, but at the same time it is easy to eat. You can choose a spiciness level from sweet to very spicy to your own liking, so it is also a popular place to visit for families with children.

The interior theme is based on white and has a café-like atmosphere.

Indian curry specialty restaurant Jyoti Hirao
Address: Tokan Mansion Hirao 1st floor, 2-21-18 Hirao, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-522-4566
Business hours: 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM (last order 11:30 PM)
Regular holiday: Irregular (open on Sundays)
http://jyoti-fukuoka.com

★ Takeout available

Nepalese and Indian Restaurant Makar
Address: 1st Floor, Koga Building, 3-3-14 Ohashi, Minami-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone:092-552-3911
Business hours: 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM (last order 11:30 PM)
Irregular holidays
★ Takeout available

【South Indian curry】

◎106 South Indian

Obsessed with the South Indian healthy set meal “Meals”!

Main Chef Ladish and the chefs from South India

The first restaurant opened in Kitakyushu in 2011 with the concept of “casually enjoy authentic Indian cuisine”. Together with the Fukuoka Tenjin store and the Bayside Place store, 106 South Indian currently operates three stores. The menu features curry dishes prepared by chefs from South India who have honed their skills at five-star hotels in India and hotels in Tokyo.

The Fukuoka Tenjin store is spacious and has eye-catching decor from India.

Speaking of South India, for the past few years, the vegetarian set meal “Meals” with tons of vegetables and beans has been gaining popularity among health-conscious curry fans. When we asked head chef Ladish about the characteristics of South Indian curry, he smilingly replied, “South India has many vegetarians and is close to the sea, so many dishes use little oil and make use of vegetables, beans and fish. Meals is a home-style dish that is similar to the Japanese style of one soup with three vegetables.”

“Meals”, an everyday meal in South Indian cuisine. The menu is combined to support the balance of the body.

Meals is a colorful mix of curries such as kootu (vegetable and coconut curry), rasam (tomato soup curry), and sambal (bean curry), along with three daily vegetable dishes such as pachadi and polyol, as well as Indian rice and chapati (crepe-style bread).

For those who are new to this dish, the way it is eaten is also fresh and enjoyable. The sweet and gentle taste mainly made up from the vegetables and beans also features the strong aroma and richness of spices, giving it a good punch.

The “Weekend Meals Lunch” sometimes surprises the customer with biryani instead of Indian rice, or a chapati made with beets that turns a beautiful pink. In addition to Meals, the restaurant also offers a variety of curries made with chicken, mutton, and seafood, as well as the recommended “dosa lunch,” which features masala dosa and mashed potatoes wrapped in a crepe-like dough.

★takeout were started in April!

A lunch set with a curry of choice (1200 yen, incl. tax)

“Meals” with 3 kinds of curry and side dishes (1600 yen, incl. tax)

106 South Indian Fukuoka Tenjin store
Address: IMAIZUMI 24 Season Building 1st floor, 1-17-14 Imaizumi, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Address: 092-791-1065
Business hours: 11:30 AM – 3:00 PM (last order 2:30 PM), 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM (last order 8:30 PM)
Regular holiday: Irregular
https://www.instagram.com/106southindian/
★ Takeout available

106 SouthIndian Bayside Place store
Address: 1st floor, Building C, 13-6 Chikko Honmachi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-291-1065
Business hours:
11:30 AM – 3:00 PM (last order 2:30 PM), 4:30 PM – 8:00 PM (last order 7:30 PM)
Saturday: 11:30 AM – 9:00 PM (last order 8:30 PM)
Sunday: 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM (last order 7:30 PM)
Regular holiday: Irregular

Asian curry

【Sri Lankan curry】

◎Nuwara Eliya 

the curry lover’s favorite place to go.

In Sri Lanka, which I once had occasion to visit, a local friend’s mother cooked a home-style dish full of spices. Tuna Paha, a sister restaurant to Nuwara Eliya, started with the goal bringing this deliciousness to Fukuoka with an authentic Sri Lankan chef. Since its opening in 1988, not only fans from Fukuoka, but curry freaks from all over the country have become addicted to the rich taste made up of super hot spiciness, the bonito-like flavor of Maldives fish, and the mild flavor of coconut milk. Low in oil and healthy, it has a slippery texture like a soup curry.

The exterior invites you into an ethnic world.

The popular “Sri Lankan Curry”, a combination of softly stewed chicken, beans and the vegetables of the day, as well as the “Sri Lankan Noodle Curry”, which uses rice noodles instead of rice, and the “Dry Curry”, a fried rice with lots of ingredients and chicken curry gravy, are some of the dishes loved by many fans. These three items stimulate the five senses, but those who like spicy food can make their dish “real red”, which is 2 to 5 times spicier (60 to 300 yen more) (please be careful as this makes it very spicy).

▲ The tartness of the lemon in the dry curry also stimulates the appetite.

Lunch with Sri Lankan tea and ice cream to soften the spiciness 1,100 yen

An original store interior where you can experience a world of bookshelves and art design

At Nuwara Eliya, you can enjoy addictively authentic Sri Lankan curry together with an interior space covered in books, art, and design, decorated according to the preferences of the owner, an architect.

Nuwara Eliya 
Address: 2nd floor Tsuruta Keyaki Building, 1-1-5 Akasaka, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-737-7788
Business hours: 11:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Regular holidays: Year end and New Year holidays 
https://tunapaha.jp/nuwaraeriya.html
※Takeout of curry packs or other dishes available
https://tunapaha.jp/omotikaeri.html

Tuna paha
Address:5th floor Daisan Nishidori Building, 1-1-59 Daimyo 2-chome, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-712-9700
Business hours: 11:30 AM – 11:30 PM
Regular holidays: Year end and New Year holidays 
※ There is also a second store on the 2nd basement floor of Solaria Stage.

【Bangladeshi curry】

◎Hyder, a Bangladeshi miscellaneous goods and curry shop 

Spice medicinal curry made with the health of the family in mind 

Greeting its customers with a Bangladeshi flag, “Hyder” is a miscellaneous goods and curry shop run by the Bangladeshi owner, Mr. Hyder.

Decorating the wall are photos explaining a program to build a hospital in Mr. Hyder’s home country

It has been nine years since the restaurant opened. Mr. Hyder’s hand-made Bangladeshi curry offers a pure taste of his home country’s flavor, without any arrangements.

“Bangladeshi curry tastes like home. That is why curry has a different taste in each family. The main spices that support the body are the same, but in my family, we also blend them differently depending on how we feel that day. The curry I make recreates the taste of my mother’s curry.”

“Hyder’s medicinal curry”, with a salad and milk tea 1200 yen

The Hyder family’s curry is a medicinal curry using about 20 ingredients such as cardamom, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, black pepper, and white pepper as is, without grinding them.

Based on this medicinal curry, the repertoire at Hyder offers about 14 different types of curry, including “Today’s Fish Curry” with sea bream and horse mackerel, mutton, prawns, and the “Spice Mix Keema Curry”, which is only available on weekends.

Keema curry (mixed chicken, beef and mutton) served in a dish made in Bangladesh, only available on the weekend 1800 yen

The Hyder family’s signature curry energizes the body from the inside out without using chemical seasonings or additives. By the way, the entire menu, including the meat used, is made of halal food (ingredients prepared according to Islamic rules).

Address: 2-9-10-201, Kego, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-714-0758
Opening hours: 11:00 AM – 2:30 PM last order, 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Regular holiday: Tuesdays
https://hyder-curry.com
★Takeout, frozen curry packs available

【Thai curry】

◎Duangjan (Itoshima)

Coconut milk curry in a great location with a view of the sea

“Duangjan” is a Thai restaurant certified by the Thai government that opened in 2012 along Route 202 in Itoshima, west of Fukuoka City. The authentic Thai cuisine prepared by its Thai chef uses locally sourced vegetables from Itoshima, fish from the Genkai Sea, and plentiful home-grown Thai herbs to always offer fresh and delicious food.

The ocean waits right behind the restaurant, a 150-year-old Japanese-style renovated house!

Thai curry is characterized by the zesty spiciness of chili peppers, the mild sweetness of coconut milk, and the ample use of herbs. At Duangjan, you can enjoy green curry (chicken or shrimp from 1,200 yen), with a perfect balance of green chilies, coconut milk, and homemade herbs for a full-bodied experience, and paneen mu (pork or shrimp from 1,400 yen), a savory coconut red curry made with red chilies and infused with peanuts.

Shrimp green curry. Authentic taste, only a little less spicy.

Enjoy the sea breeze while you are served your Thai curry, as hot and profound as the country it comes from, on a terrace overlooking Fukae Beach. Experience the slow flow of time in Thailand and Itoshima.

Address: 2129-18 Futajofukae, Itoshima
Phone: 092-325-3986
Opening hours: 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM (last order 2:30 PM), 5:00 PM – 9:00 PM (last order 8:00 PM)
Regular holiday: Dinner time on Tuesdays, Wednesdays (changes according to the season, so please check the website)
https://duangjan.net
★ Delivery available

【European style curry】

◎European style rice curry Ken’s

Highest quality thick curry made up of soup stock of Saga and

rare parts of Imari beef 

“Curry would be excellent today.” With this catchy Hakata-style copy, this humorous store now has a new location of the popular Ken’s, featured in the media for serving elaborate European-style curries, mainly at the Sumiyoshi main store and through mobile sales. Opened in October last year, the Hakata Station South branch is a relaxed space with counter and table seating.

The specialty at the Hakata Station South branch is that you can customize the curry to your liking. You write your favorite menu items and toppings on the order form on the table, add your favorite spiciness and spice balls, which are based on onions and garlic and sautéed with special spices, and enjoy the change in taste.

The roux that forms the base of all the curries is a European-style curry made from soup stock from Saga and Imari beef, flavored with more than 20 different homemade spices, then simmered intensely and left to rest overnight below freezing point.

The most popular menu item on the billboard using this luxurious roux, prepared with lots of time and effort, is the curry with fatty beef (930 yen, incl. tax). This special dish contains 100 grams of tender, stewed beef carefully selected for its rare parts of A4 rank or higher and stocked from Matsuo Livestock in Imari, Saga Prefecture.

In addition to teppan menus such as keema curry and grilled cheese curry, there is also a special menu only available at the Hakata Station South store called “Puru Puru Hakata Round Intestines Curry” (1,080 yen, incl. tax), which appears only on the 10th, 20th and 30th of each month. This is a connoisseur’s favorite dish, with an abundance of top-grade Japanese black beef round intestines and chives, accented with citrus fruits.

Hakata Station South store
Address: Lucky Land, first floor street level, 6-8-1 Hakata Station Minami, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-472-6767
Business hours: 11:00 AM – 10:00 PM 
Regular holidays: None
https://www.kens1.jp/
★ Takeout, Uber Eats available

Sumiyoshi Main Store
Address: 5-1-6 Sumiyoshi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-473-4747
Business hours: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM (Sundays 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM)
★ Takeout, Uber Eats available
★ Click here for information on “mobile sales” in Fukuoka City.
https://www.kens1.jp/wagon-retailer/

【Soup curry】  

◎Vegespa

Vegetables in a tomato-based curry soup with a rich and salty flavor!

This specialty restaurant was opened in 2005 by its owner who trained for 5 years in Hokkaido, the birthplace of soup curry. Vegespa’s original soup curry is based on a soup of chicken bones, pork bones, vegetables, and fruit that has been cooked for a long time, then combined with an original tomato-based paste and further simmered.

The secret spices

The menu offers 12 different dishes. The signature Chicken Leg (980 yen), which is topped with chicken leg and vegetables, as well as unusual curries such as “Cubed meat” curry and natto curry, and original dishes such as the Hakata-Hokkaido “Round intestine” Curry, will delight travelers.

And speaking of soup curry, it always comes accompanied by a cut lemon. It is customary to squeeze the lemon out over the rice, pick up a spoonful, and dip it into the curry to soak up the soup.

Fukuoka soup curry specialty restaurant Vegespa
Address: Elina Plaza Tenjin-Minami 2nd floor, 1-15-53 Kego, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka City
Phone: 092-716-0688
Business hours: 11:00 AM – 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM – 9:30 PM last order ※Open only for lunch on Thursdays
Regular holiday: Irregular
http://vegespa.os358.net/
https://www.instagram.com/soupcurry.vegespa/
★ Takeout, delivery available
※As of April, deliveries only.
Delivery Menu available here→ http://vegespa.os358.net/delivery.html

So, how was it? It is hard to describe the fascinating world of curry, but these are just a few of the restaurants in Fukuoka loved by curry fans sorted by genre. In addition to the restaurants introduced here, there are many more unique curry restaurants with a wide variety of spice mixes, ingredients, and cooking methods to choose from. If you see a shop that catches your fancy while walking around Fukuoka, don’t hesitate to jump in!

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