Tonkatsu: and Early Piece of Japanese Fusion

Are you bringing a Japanese-food first-timer with you to our Issaquah Japanese restaurant? Try recommending a classic tonkatsu, also known as don-katsu, dish. Even for the more unadventurous of Western diners, this well-loved pork cutlet is a surefire thumbs-up. Many find it to be one of Japan’s most “familiar” dishes, most resembling the kind of fare you might be used to finding at a common US diner. Indeed, this is exactly the genesis of the tonkatsu in the first place.

Tonkatsu is thought to have first come about at some point around 1890 in Ginza, Japan. Though the details are obscured in history, it would seem that there was a restaurant in the area that was known for serving food inspired by European cooking techniques. Though the idea of “katsu” had existed for a long time, the deep-fried “tonkatsu” was a true novelty. The first tonkatsu dishes were actually eaten with a fork, which was a practice that was all but unknown in Japan at the time! Come down to Aji Sushi & Grill and try a taste of early Japanese fusion for yourself.