Sakae, who runs the “Tamae” restaurant in Osaka, falls for Soga, a divorced office worker from Tokyo, after witnessing Soga savoring the dishes he prepared in the new Japanese BL ‘Although I Love You, and You?‘.
Matsumoto Sakae owns a cozy restaurant called “Tamae” in downtown Osaka, known for its delicious and affordable home-cooked meals. When Hisashi Soga, a divorced office worker from Tokyo, visits the restaurant, Sakae is smitten by his appreciation for his food. He confesses his feelings with a simple, “I like you, but what can I say?!”
Warning: Spoiler alert. Read at your own risk.
In a previous scene, Sakae is lying down with his ex-lover and decides to initiate a breakup. He thinks to himself, regretting that if he hadn’t confessed his love on that particular day, he could have spared himself from the current pain he’s feeling. Currently, Sakae starts his day by working out, offering prayers at his mother’s altar, and anticipating the fresh ingredients for the restaurant. In the evening, the restaurant is crowded with regular customers. One of them notices Sakae’s growing authority, reminiscent of Tamae. However, Sakae’s childhood friend Kaname playfully teases him, claiming he’s still like a child at heart. Since Kaname recently got married, Sakae is asked about his dating status. Sakae responds with a no, and Kaname questions if he’s genuinely not interested in someone new. Sakae explains that he’s too busy with the restaurant. While grilling saury for a customer, the fat causes excessive smoke, leading everyone inside to cough. At that moment, Takagi and another customer enter the restaurant and Sakae experiences love at first sight. The newcomer, Soga, expresses admiration for the delicious food, and Sakae eagerly awaits his reactions and comments. A tipsy customer greets Soga, unintentionally spilling a drink on him. Quickly, Soga grabs a napkin to wipe off the liquid, leaving Sakae amazed by his kindness. His childhood friend suggests getting a towel, but it takes Sakae a few seconds because he is watching in awe. Soga acknowledges the Osaka-like atmosphere in the restaurant and expresses a desire to return. Excited by this, Sakae invites him to come back anytime. In the sauna with his friend Kaname, Sakae compares Soga to a significant event, describing him as a “black ship from Tokyo” that has landed in his heart and disrupted his usually quiet life. Sakae is impressed by how Soga enjoys his food and always carries a handkerchief. However, Kaname doesn’t quite grasp Sakae’s expressions. Sakae continues to elaborate on Soga’s polite choice of words, gentle smile, and the alluring way he loosens his tie. Kaname can only apologize to the others in the sauna while Sakae wonders when Soga will return to Tamae.
At work, Soga and Takagi are delighted when their superiors decide to proceed with the contract. They praise the well-prepared presentation and the competency of Soga who came from the Tokyo headquarters and even joke to Soga about him transferring to their company next month. Soga is confused while Takagi adds fuel to the fire but immediately informs him that they’re just joking. Later on, Takagi assigns Soga and Kanda to work together on procuring wine glasses. Kanda invites Soga to dinner, and they decide to go to Tamae. Sakae is visibly pleased to see Soga but becomes confused when he notices Kanda accompanying him. Kanda and Soga sit awkwardly, facing each other, and Kanda mentions that she has something to tell him. Sakae and the regulars watching them assume she might be confessing, leaving Sakae expecting what she is about to say. Kanda asks if Sakae dislikes Osaka people, a question she wants to address before they start working together. She’s observed that Sakae’s expression tightens whenever someone makes a joke. She assures him that it’s fine if that’s the case but suggests that hiding his feelings could hinder building trust with others. Sakae attempts to explain, but Kanda persists, prompting Soga to intervene after overhearing the conversation. Sakae suggests that Kanda might still be feeling nervous at work. Understanding, Kanda apologizes for raising unnecessary doubts. Sakae lightens the mood by making a joke about capybaras, successfully easing the tension. Once everyone leaves, Sakae and Soga are alone when Soga confesses that he isn’t entirely comfortable around people from Osaka, leaving Sakae greatly surprised. Soga explains his discomfort, mentioning the loud voices, fast-paced speech, and the constant expectation of humor as some of the reasons. He vividly imagines a scary scenario where he’s giving a presentation, and everyone in the room is eagerly anticipating a punchline.