Feast Your Eyes on Tiger Den Yakitori

Photo by Mai Pham
Beef rib eye yakitori come to the table glistening in their juices and a light tare glaze of mirin, soy, sake and sugar.

In Japan, you'll find yakitori-ya spots -- places that specialize in yakitori, or skewers of chargrilled meat -- everywhere. The places are usually casual and fun, somewhat rowdy and raucus, a venue for friends to gather for an easy meal while drinking beer.

This is exactly what you'll find at Tiger Den in Chinatown. Though the initial buzz centered around the restaurant's made-from-scratch ramen, Tiger Den's robata, or charcoal grill, is currently one of the most enjoyable in the city. Pricing is also extremely reasonable, at $1.50 to $2.75 per order of two yakitori skewers.

Join us on this photo journey as we eat our way through the yakitori menu at newcomer Tiger Den.

Photo by Mai Pham

Through the window overlooking the kitchen, we watch grill master Ming-san, who has 10 years of experience grilling in Japan, perform his craft. He prepares a set number of skewers at a time, taking care not to overcook the meat or overcrowd the grill.

Photo by Mai Pham

Large shrimp are grilled whole with the head on, seasoned with nothing more than shio, or salt. We pick up the shrimp, which are served with half a lime, with our hands, peeling off the shells even as we lick off the salty chargrilled flavors of it. We enjoy the plump sweet flesh before sucking on the head, getting a beautiful, briny head rush. Oh, yes.

Photo by Mai Pham

Next up, it's the pork jowl, small-cut chunks of meat with a rich, slightly gelatinous texture and a snap in the bite, reminiscent of cartilage. Seasoned with salt, it's as flavorful as pork belly without the same fattiness. We love it. It's easily one of our favorites.

Location Info

Tiger Den

9889 Bellaire Blvd, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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gossamersixteen topcommenter

Orange seasoning salt teehee, that's togarashi. I use it on everything, great on popcorn.


Thanks, good stuff! I've tried the Yakitori Bar at Onaga on Shepherd and Alabama...and was very impressed.

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