Hiroshima is the sacred land of okonomiyaki, and in a commercial building right next to the south exit of JR Hiroshima Station, there is a space called “Ekimae Hiroba” where about 15 okonomiyaki restaurants are gathered.
The space is decorated in black to resemble a food stand at night… Light bulbs shine on both sides of a narrow passageway… A cheerful waiter shouts out from the curtains, “Ready to serve!” The shopkeeper’s voice was very cheerful….
As I continued down the aisle, I noticed one restaurant that was clearly crowded with people. This restaurant is famous for spreading the “3D okonomiyaki” all over Japan. The contrast with the other stores is so obvious that even if you are going there for the first time, you will recognize that store immediately…
Denko Sekka Ekimae Hiroba Branch｜Expanding rapidly with 3D okonomiyaki! New Wave of Hiroshima-yaki Restaurants Revolutionizing the Industry by Winning Michelin
The name of the restaurant is “Denko Sekka”. It is a popular Hiroshima-yaki restaurant that has been listed in Michelin Hiroshima. The name, taken from the lyrics of a song by The Blue Hearts, is not limited to Hiroshima City and the neighboring city of Hatsukaichi, but is now rapidly expanding to Tokyo Station and Imabari City.
The U-shaped counter with 22 seats around a large iron plate was already full of customers, and I was shown to the one empty seat that was barely left. In the center of the restaurant, a manager-like person was cooking okonomiyaki with a lively voice, which gave the place a very live atmosphere.
Now, what is “3D okonomiyaki”? The following image will answer that question in a single shot…
Instead of the usual rounded and squashed disk shape, the okonomiyaki is raised high above the dome…truly three dimensional. This is the “3D okonomiyaki” that Denko Sekka is known for.
The dish in the picture is the restaurant’s signature menu item. At 1,050 yen per okonomiyaki ball, the price is a bit steep for okonomiyaki, but it is enough to guarantee the taste of the okonomiyaki to make Hiroshima residents, who take pride in their okonomiyaki, line up to try it.
So, what is the advantage of making the okonomiyaki dome-shaped instead of crushing it?
In my opinion, it is the fact that the soba or udon noodles and cabbage can be eaten with their original texture, and the appearance of the okonomiyaki gives you a strange sensation as if you are eating a fluffy omelette on an iron plate.
Of course, the taste is a little different from ordinary okonomiyaki. The “Denko Sekka” contains a large amount of chopped shiso leaves, which are very popular because they go very well with okonomiyaki. It is very popular with our customers.
Oba leaves give the impression of being used in a rather elegant way, but when you put a bowl of Denko Sekka in your mouth, the flavor of the leaves stimulates your sense of smell with a gusto that is as strong as that of the kottekote okonomiyaki sauce.
And then there is the chewy texture of the soba…the soba, which retains its texture as it is boiled, mixes with the otafuku sauce and turns into a sauce yakisoba on the iron plate as well. It is heated all the way on the iron plate, but thanks to the egg lid at the top, it becomes steaming hot and remains moist and chewy even after a long time.
King of Rookie: spicy sauce and hormones… recommended for those who want even more stimulation!
Including this “Denko Sekka”, Denko Sekka offers a total of seven types of 3D okonomiyaki on its menu. All of them boldly use ingredients rarely seen in okonomiyaki, demonstrating the restaurant’s strong desire to explore new flavors.
One of the most unique dishes is the “King of Rookie,” which we will introduce hereafter. It is a spicy dish that is not often seen in okonomiyaki, and the ingredients used include hormone (a hormone).
Although the menu calls it “very spicy,” when I tried it, I did not feel the spiciness so much, probably because it was neutralized by the egg and soba noodles. Personally, I found the spiciness to be a good stimulant, and it was easier to eat than I had expected.
When you are eating the chewy noodles and happen to come across the hormone, the squishy texture plus the slightly peculiar hormone flavor will spread in your mouth. This is matched with the spicy sauce and chili pepper, creating a unique and addictive taste.
There are still more dishes to come from Denko Sekka’s 3D okonomiyaki menu: Of course, you can enjoy regular okonomiyaki as well!
In addition to the two items introduced here, Denko Sekka also offers a wide variety of other menu items. You can also order regular okonomiyaki, so it is a restaurant that can be used by those who want to go orthodox.
Below is Denko Sekka’s okonomiyaki menu (as of December 2023, prices include tax), so please refer to it…
Denko Sekka Ekimae Hiroba’s 3D okonomiyaki menu (both available with your choice of soba or udon)
- Denko Sekka: 1050 yen → 1360 yen: double meat and egg, squid tempura, shiso leaves, green onion
- Dream 1260 yen→1580 yen: Meat, egg, tempura squid, shrimp, green onion, fried egg
- Plenty of cheese 1155 yen→1255 yen: Meat, double egg, tempura squid, plenty of cheese
- Plenty of mayonnaise 950 yen → 1470 yen: Meat, double eggs, squid tempura, and plenty of mayonnaise
- King of Rookie 1050 yen→1360 yen: Double meat, egg, hormone, hot sauce, and a dash of spice
- Gentle on People 1365 yen → 1690 yen: double meat, egg, oyster, shiso leaves, scallion sprinkles, chopped nori seaweed
- Dance number 1,400 yen → 1,715 yen: double meat and egg, tempura squid, kimchi, cheese, and green onion
Denko Sekka Ekimae Hiroba’s regular okonomiyaki menu (both available with your choice of soba or udon)
- Meat and egg okonomiyaki 680 yen → 925 yen: meat and egg
- Meat and egg with squid tempura 830 yen → 1080 yen: meat, egg, and squid tempura
- Meat and egg kimchi 890 yen → 1155 yen: Meat, egg, and kimchi
- Meatball hormone 930 yen → 1185 yen: meat, egg, hormone
- Meat and egg oysters: 1030 yen → 1290 yen: Meat, egg, and oyster
Even if you are just about to leave Hiroshima, it’s not too late! Denko Sekka Ekimae Hiroba Branch is a 3-minute walk from the South Exit of JR Hiroshima Station.
Now, here are the details of the restaurant…
Denko Sekka Ekimae Hiroba
Address: Hiroshima Full Focus Building 6F, 10-1 Matsubaracho, Minami-ku, Hiroshima
Phone number: 082-568-7851
Business hours: 10:00-22:30
Closed: Open every day
Parking: No parking (use coin parking nearby)
Credit card payment: Accepted (also accepts electronic money and traffic IC)
Incidentally, the Ekimae Hiroba branch also offers a take-out menu. Even if you have a little time to spare, you can eat it on the Shinkansen on your way home.
P.S. An ordinary local shopping mall. When you go down to the basement, you will see a strange sight: a crowd of people in one corner…