I'm often surprised by the plain English translations that unique sounding Japanese restaurant names have. The Chatan Shokudou near the Pacific Ocean at the northern end of Araha Beach in Chatan Cho translates as Chatan Cafeteria or Chatan Restaurant.
Despite the plain name the restaurant is a great place to escape the hustle of Mihama American Village to a traditional Ryukyuan themed restaurant that serves delicious Okinawan cuisine.
The restaurant and sign outside is strictly in Japanese, but can be easily found by looking for the first building on the right when traveling in Chatan from American Village to Araha Beach, look for the restaurant before the canal when the beach park comes into view on the right.
Inside Chatan Shokudou is an eclectic mixture of very traditional Ryukyuan themed accents and lot of Japanese pop culture from the 1950's to 1990's. I
've tried taco rice here, as well as Okinawan soba, and the goya chanpuru and soba set. Goya is an unusual looking and tasting squash that is a staple vegetable in Okinawa. It is known as a bitter melon which has a taste that initiates one's mouth like no other bitterness ever has; it at times can feel like the effects of Novocaine as it quickly takes over the palatte. Wheat tea is served free to all customers.
Most dishes at Chatan Shokudou are priced between 500 and 900 yen.
The restaurant is open 11:30 ~ 15:30 for lunch and 18:00 until midnight daily.