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San’in Trip: Day Three-Fished out! And Monsters Too!

After the crabfest at Gyosantei, we started our third day at a hotel which also serves as a dormitory for sailors by the port of Sakaiminato. Although not a soul besides us seemed to be wandering the harbor or the streets on that sunny spring morning, the clear sky at this working port town was filled with the “clang, clang, clang” from the shipyard echoing through an otherwise very peaceful neighborhood.

Kaiseki Journal 5: Choyo-no-Kaiseki

Chōyō (重陽)is the Japanese term for the Double Ninth Day which falls on the ninth day of the ninth lunar month. In Japan, September 9th is Chrysanthemum Day, one of the five seasonal festivals in Japan. To me, today is the most tranquil festival of all five, even compared with the rather quiet nanakusa day on January 7th.

Tokyofoodcast’s fastfood lunch picks under ¥400

The other day, I was sitting at CoCo Ichi for a quick lunch and realized that ¥400 could can get me a relatively decent lunch around Tokyo. So, I decided to pull together a post with my fast food lunch picks under ¥400. Just because I’m being cheap, doesn’t mean I don’t have some standards…

Kaiseki Journal 4: Asa chaji no kaiseki

The asacha tea gathering is held early in the morning to avoid the summer’s sweltering heat. Or, at least, the idea is to avoid the midday sun and heat that makes it hard to breathe, just like when you step into a sauna. Imagine the heat from the air combined with burning coal and boiling water in an iron pot in a small tea room!

The ceremony starts around 6:00 am and I wonder what time the host starts to prepare for the early morning. One answer I got from my sensei is around 4:00 am.

The August kaiseki menu was rather simple and light for asa chaji.

Ultimate summer food and sake pairing: Part 2

I loved everything that night, but I have such a soft spot for Kochi from my trip to Kami-no-kae. My favorite pairing for the night was a bit of lightly-warmed Tsukasa Continued from my previous post: Ultimate summer food and sake paring – Part 1…

Botan Hacchu Funasaku with katsuo-no-tataki. I was lucky to be sitting next to my sake otaku friend who always has his low-tech portable kan gadget to warm up the brew. Grilled hoya with Urakasumi Junmai Nama was a tie. What’s your favorite?

Japanese Language for Japanese Food

I’d like to share a truly useful resource for acquiring Japanese. This comes dangerously close to crossing over from my role as food and sake otaku to my day job of language otaku, but here goes anyway. Smart.fm is a website for learning, especially for learning language. That sounds very simple, but the tools they provide are based on sound cognitive science research and work well. If you want to learn more about how Smart.fm works, please watch this short video, or just take my word for it that the system works and read on to the good stuff-food.

Ultimate summer food and sake pairing: Part 1

What do the brewers pick for food to match with their sake?
The other day, I was at an event at Takara, Yurakucho, where ten breweries from all around Japan brought their sake and their local food that’s in season. They plan to have similar events every throughout the year in Tokyo.

Dine on shojin ryori in temples near Tokyo

If you are not ready to take the plunge and spend a day or more at a monastery, there are a couple places you can go to more casually enjoy this special meal in a temple environment. I think the whole experience becomes more than just the meal, such as you might get at a restaurant.

Food for thought: Shojin Ryori at Kenchoji, Kamakura

Arigato is a such commonly used word that the true meaning sometimes goes unnoticed. At least it never occurred to me to think about where the word came from and what it really means until the day I immersed myself in Zen Buddhism at Kenchoji in Kamakura.

Memories of Wagu

Tony McNicol at Tokyo Photojournalist takes you through the life of wagu which is better known around the world as Kobe beef. His photograph series tells a story that begins with an innocent looking calf on the peaceful pasture and finishes up with a tasty looking steak sizzling on the grill at a restaurant. Tony’s […]

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