As everyone knows, I'm a pretty big eater. One of my favorite things about living abroad is that I get to eat so much good food. As I've said to Paula a few times, "When I'm living in Japan I don't want to eat anything except Japanese food."
One Japanese food that I never ate prior to coming here is okonomiyaki. Okonomiyaki is a savoury "pancake" with a variety of ingredients. To be honest, taste wise, this is probably my least favorite dish I've had in Japan so far. That's not to say I think it is bad, I just think it is okay. The experience of going to an okonomiyaki place is worth trying it at least once though. As you can see from the picture, you get to cook your own pancake at your table. Generally I'm not a fan of cooking for myself because a) if I wanted to cook for myself I would have stayed home and cooked b) I'm scared that I'll mess up what I'm cooking.
My one okonomiyaki experience was perfect because the owner stood at our table and cooked for us. This meant a) someone was cooking besides me b) I'm assuming it was not messed up.
I should also mention that this is the closest thing I've seen to a "Japanese Hibachi" like the Benihana chain in the states. From what I've gathered there are no hibachis in Japan where a chef flips shrimp into his hat. Yes, I'm as sad at this as you are.