Kani Doraku on Dotombori in Osaka
We made our way down to the southern Minami part of Osaka today, where a number exciting things awaited, most notably Dotombori, the site of the famous Kuidaore clown as well as Kani Doraku (1-6-2 Dotombori, 6211-8975, with other locations across the city), home of the giant moving crab on its signboard. Sure, it was a bit touristy, but I love crab, and nothing was going to stop me from eating here.
The thing that I really looked forward to was the yaki kani. It's certainly common to have crab boiled, steamed, or sauteed, but not grilled on a fire, so I got really excited about this. As it turned out, it didn't really make that much of a difference in taste, but there was definitely no complaining about this either as crab is still crab. The kani guratan (crab au gratin) with melted cheese and mushrooms sitting in an inverted crab's shell hit the spot as well.
Don't come down here expecting cheap prices though. Many of the full crab offerings featuring multiple ways to prepare a crab (including grilling it yourself at the built-in tables) went for 5000 Yen (US$43) and upwards. The two items that we got were actually just little side dishes that barely even dented our appetites, and yet still ran up quite a tab. But it was definitely worth coming to, even if just to check out what is practically a landmark in the city.