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Kaminari-okoshi: Asakusa Thunder Crackers images

Kaminari-okoshi: Asakusa Thunder Crackers

Kaminari-okoshi (雷おこし) are traditional Japanese sweets. Crispy rice is mixed with sugar and syrup, pressed down into a flat shape and cut into squares. Often there are some peanuts mixed into it, but there are also many other flavors such as macha green tea and sesame. The added ingredients giv…(286 words)

David image

David

How to be Polite in a Restaurant in Japan? images

How to be Polite in a Restaurant in Japan?

These are not just little finger towels placed neatly next to your plate for conveniently wiping stray food off of hands and fingers...these Oshibori are almost like an appetizer to the meal itself. You go into a restaurant, settle in with some water or tea and an Oshibori wet towel. Some places wi…(139 words)

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“Hina-arare” - Grilled bits of rice cake for the Girls' Festival images

“Hina-arare” - Grilled bits of rice cake for the Girls' Festival

“Hina-arare” are sweet rice cakes eaten for the Girls’ Festival on March 3. There are mainly two kinds depending on what they are made of; glutinous rice and ordinary rice. Kanto people are more familiar with the one made of ordinary rice while Kansai people are more familiar with glutinous rice on…(76 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

Food Delivery Systems of Japan images

Food Delivery Systems of Japan

With the engaged city life that many may find while living here in Japan, city problems are to arise. One of these problems that may occur may well be food; how to get it, pre-cooked and prepared, organic, gluten-free, and so on. Although the concept of food delivery is nothing novel, in Tokyo, the…(446 words)

Alex image

Alex

Ningyo-yaki: Little Baked Doll Cakes images

Ningyo-yaki: Little Baked Doll Cakes

Ningyo-yaki (人形焼) is very popular in Tokyo Asakusa where you can watch them being baked. This is one of my favorite Japanese sweets and a very good omiyage gift. Ningyo is the Japanese word for doll, so the name of this sweet reads "baked dolls". Ningo-yaki are small cakes baked in small m…(192 words)

David image

David

SAKE 101: A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO SAKE images

SAKE 101: A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO SAKE

A trip to Japan would not be complete without a little sake tasting! But unless you are an avid sake drinker, it can be hard to know where to begin.To help you navigate the world of sake, we’ve done plenty of research in Japan: from consulting with sake connoisseurs, to sake tastings and sampli…(1032 words)

Andres Zuleta, Boutique Japan image

Andres Zuleta, Boutique Japan

Enjoy Japanese Chu-hi drink ! images

Enjoy Japanese Chu-hi drink !

You will see an overwhelming numbers of Chu-hi cans lined up in a rowbesides beer and wine in every convenience stores. Chu-hi is aJapanese-shochu-based cocktail, which has now become a widely acceptedbeverage nationwide in Japan with a variety of offerings such as localfruits flavors.A…(332 words)

fujimorison image

fujimorison

Kintsuba - Japanese Sweets in Asakusa images

Kintsuba - Japanese Sweets in Asakusa

Kintsuba きんつば is one of the Japanese sweets that I like because you can watch them being made. This photo is from a small shop in Asakusa located in the Nakamise-dori shopping street at Senso-ji temple. You can try the Kintsuba fresh, still warm. Kintsuba are made from sweet bean paste. The…(255 words)

David image

David

Do not stick your chopsticks upright in your rice! images

Do not stick your chopsticks upright in your rice!

Do not stick your chopsticks upright in your rice. This is considered as a very bad manner and it makes people cringe. Because it’s the way a bowl of rice is offered to a dead person, at their deathbed or in front of their photograph on the household Buddhist altar. Also, do not spear your foo…(107 words)

EmiOnishi image

EmiOnishi

Popular Yatai Foods: Yakisoba images

Popular Yatai Foods: Yakisoba

Yatai food stalls at festivals always include a yakisoba vendor. Yakisoba noodles are Japanese fried noodles, but they have nothing to do with soba. The noodles used here are more like the ones for ramen. The noodles are quickly cooked on a hotplate with vegetables, meat, or seafood and seasone…(215 words)

David image

David

I opened a craft beer bar in Tokyo images

I opened a craft beer bar in Tokyo

I recently opened a new craft beer bar in Tokyo and I thought an article re the process of this would be interesting. After the forced closing of my previous beer bar in Aoyama (the building was being demolished to make way for a redevelopment) I was in a situation where I had to relocate the b…(1288 words)

Adstev73 image

Adstev73

“OKAKI” and “OSENBEI” images

“OKAKI” and “OSENBEI”

I would recommend “OKAKI” and “OSENBEI” – both are one of the most popular snacks in Japan. OKAKI is essentially toasted cut and dried MOCHI rice cake. SENBEI is originally based on uruchimai, a non-glutinous rice – grind uruchimai, steam, dry, toast and brush with a flavoring sauce. Often both of…(109 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

Yatai Sweets: Baby Castella Mini Cakes images

Yatai Sweets: Baby Castella Mini Cakes

Castella is Japanese sponge cake. It is one of the foods popular as omiyage souvenirs and gifts. Baby Castella don't make fancy gifts, but they are fun. Fresh, hot, and baked in front of you, I think they are one of the best sweet foods from yatai food stalls.Castella is made with simple ingred…(215 words)

David image

David

Hanami Dango (Three-color dumpling) images

Hanami Dango (Three-color dumpling)

Sanshoku Dango (dango of three colors)is a skewered dango formed of one pink dumpling, one non-colored white dumpling and one green dumpling. Each color has a meaning : cherry blossom in spring, snow in winter and grass in summer. Wagashi (Japanese sweets) is one of the wonderful Japanese culture d…(67 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

Agemanju - Sweet Deep-fried Cakes in Asakusa images

Agemanju - Sweet Deep-fried Cakes in Asakusa

There are many good reasons for a visit to Asakusa: Senso-ji temple’s gates and pagoda, tiny Hanayashiki amusement park, Japanese kabuki theaters, old restaurants, and shops selling kimonos and festival clothing. And then there is the area around the temple’s Nakamise street where you can buy souve…(253 words)

David image

David

SUKEROKU images

SUKEROKU

When I don't have a clear idea of what type of food (bento) to buy, I always choose SUKEROKU bento.It is simple bento, kind of Sushi without raw fish.As you see the picture, two kinds of sushi are in.One is NORIMAKI, rolled by seaweed, inside : Kanpyo, brown color, cooked vegetable, boi…(137 words)

Moo Moo image

Moo Moo

Let’s get it Straight. Kelp “Kombucha” is a Must-Try During Your Time in Japan. images

Let’s get it Straight. Kelp “Kombucha” is a Must-Try During Your Time in Japan.

Walking around Denver and Colorado Springs on my recent trip, I was flabbergasted to see little cafes and shops listing “Kombucha” as one of their special offerings. Well, after a bit of research, I have come to understand that the “Kombucha” enjoying great popularity in the US is actually a bl…(690 words)

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What is Okaki? images

What is Okaki?

Okaki is one of Japanese traditional snacks made of rice (glutinous rice). In order to make okaki, rice is first polished, cleaned and steamed to make into mochi. When mochi is hardened, it will be cut into smaller pieces for drying. This drying process is the most difficult step for professional o…(83 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

The Best Butter in the world! images

The Best Butter in the world!

Calpis is OK to me, but Culpis Butter is the best butter by far!!! It is so smooth, so rich, just so tasty.There are many good bread in Japan. If you really want a good toast, you have to have a good butter too. Try Calpis Butter. It is about twice as expensive as regular butter, but more tha…(109 words)

Hitomi image

Hitomi

Trappist Cookies images

Trappist Cookies

The Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance is better known throughout the world as Trappist. The order is Roman Catholic, cloistered contemplative monastic monks and nuns who live in monasteries. Originally part of the Cistercian Order, the Trappists broke off to form an independent order…(458 words)

mikekato image

mikekato

Enospa Sojourn Part 3: “The true meaning of massage and Enoshima Island Spa Bengteng Spa” images

Enospa Sojourn Part 3: “The true meaning of massage and Enoshima Island Spa Bengteng Spa”

... My partner chose to experience the Signature Massage" (see Enospa Sojourn Part 2) ... I went for the 40 minute massage which focuses on the feet mostly going as far as the knees. This was a real foot massage by a kind and polite yet very strong armed professional massage therapist My partner o…(265 words)

Andrew Grimes image

Andrew Grimes

'SKIP Ferret & Cafe' in Okayama images

'SKIP Ferret & Cafe' in Okayama

When I recently heard that Okayama City now has a ferret cafe, I knew I had to go. Although I'm not especially "into" ferrets, I enjoy interacting with animals of all kinds, so news of this cafe caught my attention.Apparently there are only a few ferret cafes in the country; I found online refe…(486 words)

Andrea Miyata image

Andrea Miyata

Japanese sweets : “Tansan Senbei” images

Japanese sweets : “Tansan Senbei”

Thin and round carbonic acid rice cracker is mainly made of flour. They really melt in your mouth and taste slightly sweet. They are famous confections of Arima hot springs located in Hyogo prefecture. Arima Onsen is the hot spring loved by Hideyoshi Toyotomi, a famous historical personage in Japa…(66 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

Japanese sweets : “Monaka” images

Japanese sweets : “Monaka”

One of the most popular sweets among Japanese people is “Monaka”, which is made of rice (glutinous rice). Glutinous rice is kneaded and spread into a thin layer. It becomes a skin of monaka and bean jam will be put inside. The name of “Monaka” is said to have come from that they look like a full mo…(99 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun

Anpan Specialist Bakery in Asakusa Tokyo images

Anpan Specialist Bakery in Asakusa Tokyo

If you like Japanese sweets, there is a cute Japanese bakery in Asakusa that you should not miss. This bakery specialises in Anpan, soft bread filled with sweet bean paste. A great variety of Anpan is available at the An Desu store (あんですMATOBA). There is the regular anpan with red bean anko…(296 words)

David image

David

The One and Only Bikkle! images

The One and Only Bikkle!

Have had your Bikkle Today?One of the unique soft drinks that you should try while you're in Japan is Bikkle. Just the name alone is a great reason to try it, but you'll also be wowed by the taste, too.It is a yogurt-based drink that tastes a lot like the orange cream popsicles you maybe en…(102 words)

Nate image

Nate

An English Guide to Sanuki Udon images

An English Guide to Sanuki Udon

Kagawa Prefecture on the island of Shikoku might be Japan's smallest prefecture, but it's the home to one of Japan's best kept culinary secrets: Sanuki Udon. You may have heard of udon before, but Sanuki Udon isn't just regular udon. It's the best udon in the world, and some might argue it's even t…(498 words)

Sanuki Jeremy image

Sanuki Jeremy

Komeda Coffee: the First Trend to Start in Nagoya images

Komeda Coffee: the First Trend to Start in Nagoya

Komeda Coffee is a chain cafe that originated in Nagoya, and has since spread across the country. I often joke with my friends that Nagoya is the last place to be informed of the latest fads, but this time around, Nagoya became the trendsetter. Of the more than 400 stores nation-wide, in Aichi …(320 words)

Misa image

Misa

Have you Heard of Water Shield? It's a Vegetable and No, I haven’t Heard of it Either. images

Have you Heard of Water Shield? It's a Vegetable and No, I haven’t Heard of it Either.

In Japan, this vegetable is called “Junsai” and I remember seeing it in my local supermarket, wondering what it was, and then moving on to the more familiar Nori or seaweed area as usual. This is something I do often, and learn to regret when a new menu translation comes down the pipeline to my des…(541 words)

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Lots of authentic French bakeries in Japan images

Lots of authentic French bakeries in Japan

Many bakeries in Japan, especially in a trendy area/at a major station building, offer authentic French-style bread. Paul is a well-known French bakery chain, but Jean Francois, Le Pain Quotidien, Bigot, Viron, Aux Bacchanales and many other local bakeries have amazing selections of bread too. …(71 words)

Natchan image

Natchan

Omochi kaeri is the word. images

Omochi kaeri is the word.

As you order, it is appropriate to ask if they do"omochi kaeri"(take out ). For examples, "Omochi Kaeri Deki math ka?"( Can you do take out meal ? ) . Then start order foods like "sushi set, kudasai." it is appropriate to memories your address or phone number in Japanese, too. FYR: theres no tippin…(71 words)

lenamum image

lenamum

Argentine Restaurants in Tokyo images

Argentine Restaurants in Tokyo

Tokyo features culinary delights from all over the world, but one country that is vastly under-represented is Argentina. Originally colonized by Spain and then having a vast influx of immigrants from Italy, Argentina cuisine is a mix of the two old world styles with a new-world twist. Empanadas (or…(380 words)

Nico image

Nico

Enjoying Indian Masala Tea aka `Chai` in Japan images

Enjoying Indian Masala Tea aka `Chai` in Japan

Since my teen years I am a big fan of Indian tea aka 'Masala Tea' aka 'Chai'. Chai comes in several variants such as 1) Masala Tea (milk tea with flavored spices, these are different spices than the ones used in Indian curry), or 2) Ginger Tea (raw or minced ginger paste added in small quantity whi…(466 words)

Samir Bodhe image

Samir Bodhe

Touge-no-Kamameshi and Daruma Bento images

Touge-no-Kamameshi and Daruma Bento

I would recommend Touge-no-Kamameshi and Daruma Bento from Gunma prefecture. They can be purchased at Nagano Shinkansen stations. They are assortments of traditional Japanese foods in a small ceramic pot (Kamameshi) or Daruma shaped plastic bento box (Daruma Bento). These containers can be reus…(70 words)

Asiantiger image

Asiantiger

Ethiopian Food in Nakameguro images

Ethiopian Food in Nakameguro

when you would like to try spicy ......try Queen Sheba at Nakameguro.This restaurant was the oldest Ethiopian restaurant in Tokyo.You can try traditional Ethiopian food such as, spicy meat and vegetable in the form of wat (also w'et or wot), a thick stew, served atop injera, a large sourdough f…(91 words)

yukorose image

yukorose

Tsukemen Ramen Shop & Noodle Maker in Asakusa Tokyo images

Tsukemen Ramen Shop & Noodle Maker in Asakusa Tokyo

This is Tsukemen Kobo Asakusa Seimenjo, a Japanese ramen shop that makes their own fresh noodles and specializes in tsukemen. Take a look at the tiny noodle factory near the entrance. If you are lucky, you can see the staff making fresh ramen noodles. They make three types of noodles here: reg…(360 words)

David image

David

Have you Heard of Hayama Gyu Japanese Beef? images

Have you Heard of Hayama Gyu Japanese Beef?

Just a few days ago, I had an opportunity to visit one of the best “Wagyu Cattle Ranches” in Japan, which is located in the city of Hayama, less than 2 hours train/ bus ride from Tokyo. The ranch is surrounded by serene nature, it lies among a combination of bamboo, cedar forest, a stream and many …(739 words)

AustinA image

AustinA

Cremia: the ice cream I can't stop raving about images

Cremia: the ice cream I can't stop raving about

You can't argue with most of the soft-serve ice cream in Japan, but you can certainly complain about the way cones taste like straw and air, in comparison to the custardy ice cream inside. Which is why I love Cremia. Foodies and dessert lovers will be no stranger to Cremia ice cream, which has bran…(261 words)

Flory image

Flory

The Food of Kusatsu Onsen images

The Food of Kusatsu Onsen

One the best ways to experience a town is through its food. When I travel, I love finding the diners, pubs, restaurants and cafés the locals choose to frequent, because that’s where I know I’ll get to experience the most authentic cuisine. But there is an interesting factor to be considered when lo…(545 words)

Petra image

Petra

“Isobe-maki” images

“Isobe-maki”

I would recommend to wrap “mochi (rice cake)” in “nori (laver)” seaweed. It’s one of the nicest traditional cooking style. You might want to add a little bit of sugar to soy sauce, dip well-toasted cut pieces of mochi in that sauce and wrap the rice cake with nori. This is called “Isobe-maki”. Y…(68 words)

OKAKI-sun image

OKAKI-sun