Category Archives: Fruit

Vegetables & Fruit on Japanese Stamps!

TEA-3

Arguably the first Japanese stamp on food, be it vegetables, fruit or else!
Green tea being hand-picked in Nihon Daira, Shizuoka City!

Japanese gastronomy having been just awarded World Heritage status after the French Gastronomy I checked what vegetables and fruits were celebrated on Japanese stamps!

There are quite a few!
Here we go!

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Another tea picking stamp, probably modeled on Shizuoka green tea!

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Green Tea picking in Shizuoka in front of Mount Fuji!

TEA-2

Another one exactly the same theme!

TEA-4

Green tea flowers on a regular stamp!

TEA-5

Green Tea and Green Tea Ceremony!

APPLE-AOMORI

Apples in Aomori Prefecture!

APPLE-IWATE-2005

Apples in Iwate Prefecture!

CHERRIES

Cherries!

PLUMS

Plums!

NASHI

Japanese Nashi Pears!

KINOKO

Shiitake Mushrooms!

SERIES1

Fruits and vegetables Series 1:
Apples, Taro Roots, Japanese Nashi Pears, Turnips and Grapes!

SERIES2

Fruits and vegetables Series 2:
Squat Persimmons, Green pak Choi, Chestnuts, Sweet Potatoes and Pears!

KYOSAI

“Kyosai” or Kyoto vegetables!

BENIHANA

Benihana/Saflower used as natural coloring in Wagashi Cakes!

FUKINOTO

Fukinoto/Giant Butterbur, a famed Japanese wild mountain vegetable!

FUKINOTO3

Fukinoto again!

FUKINOTO-2

And again Fukinoto!

JUNSAI

Junsai/Water Shield, an aquatic plant used as a vegetable!

JYAGAIMO

Jyagaimo/Potato Field!

KATAKURI

Katakuri, the main source of native starch in Japan!

KATAKURI-2

Katakuri again!

KONNYAKU

Konnyaku Field/ konjak, konjaku, konnyaku potato, devil’s tongue, voodoo lily, snake palm, or elephant yam!

NA-NO-HANA

Na No Hana/Rape Flowers!

I’m sure I missed some! Help!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

So Good Sushi Restaurant in Nice France
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

About these ads

Bananas In Shizuoka City! By Patrick Harrington

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Guest writer, Patrick, here by kind permission of the cycling gourmet.
I must confess that I am no gourmet, but I do happen to live in the beautiful city of Shizuoka.

While taking a stroll through some green tea fields a few days ago (and this scenery is only about 20 minutes drive from downtown Shizuoka), I came across a very rare sight for these parts.

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As regular readers will know Shizuoka is blessed with extremely high quality local produce, especially its fruit and vegetables, but one thing you don’t expect to see is a banana tree, and that is exactly what appeared behind the tea bushes.

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And the bananas were starting to grow.

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Green tea and green bananas, a certain symmetry, which made an already pleasant day even better.

Dear Patrick, as always thank you so much for your great insights!
Also read LOCAL, GREEN, SOCIAL AND SOCIAL, ATAGAWA HOTSPRINGS DAI ICHI HOTEL, ALL YOU CAN EAT/VIKING RESTAURANTS by Patrick Harrington!

Do visit Patick’s blog at THINK TWICE!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

Fruit Tart, Ice Cream & Coffee Pot at BLUE BOOKS cafe in Shizuoka City!

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First visit at tea time!

Service: Very friendly, smiling and attentive
Equipment & Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Superb washroom in same building separated from the cafe.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Very generous cafe/bistro multi-genred gastronomy. Great variety. Great products. Entirely non-smoking in very modern atmosphere. Great books!

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The typhoon was still raging when I decided to take refuge at BLUE BOOKS cafe in Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City.
After lunch the previous day I also wanted to take the pulse of the place at tea time/cafe time.
Naturally it was almost full with the difference that this time customers were more of all ages.

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nice atmosphere on a rainy day!

I also noticed that more people were taking the opportunity to browse the books on display and sale that you may read on the premises even if you don’t buy any!
I hadn’t had the time to take lunch so I confess I was a bit hungry and decided to opt for a big dessert!

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I ordered a fruit to which I added a supplement of home-made framboise (raspberry) ice cream!
Beautiful colors and so appetizing!
I also ordered a pot of coffee, the equivalent of at least three cups, which made for great value!

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I found their concept of a fruit tart both generous and intelligent.
They bake enormous marzipan tart beforehand and decorate them with plenty of fruit freshly cut and placed on a minimum of cream or custard which allows you to savor the fruit first and ten dig into the tart and washing it all down with plenty of coffee! Certainly a lot healthier than usual and with such a natural taste!

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Beautiful cranberry sauce you could spread on the tart after you have you have devoured the fruit!

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But raspberry ice cream for my sweet tooth first!
Beautiful balance there: plenty of fruit and not oversweet!

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And plenty of hot coffee served the right way!

Now, I have two small problems:
1) It will take more visits at lunch and tea time before I can tackle dinners!
2) I will have to avoid making it a habit, or people will think I’m addicted! LOL

BLUE BOOKS cafe
420-0857 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Miyuki Cho, 4-6, Den Bldg 1F (5~10 minutes walk straight ahead from Shizuoka JR Station North Exit, around the corner at the large crossroads)
Tel.: 054-280-7644
Opening hours: 11:00~14:30 (lunch), 14:30^17:30 (cafe), 17:30~23:00 (dinner)
Entirely non-smoking!

Credit Cards OK
HOMEPAGE
FACEBOOK
Twitter: @BlueBooksCafe

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Shop with Intent by Debbie
BULA KANA in Fiji
Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

French Dessert: Green Unripe Peaches Tart at Pissenlit in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Excellent and very friendly.
Facilities: Great cleanliness overall. Superb washroom (mouthwash and toothpicks provided!)!
Prices: Reasonable to slightly expensive, very good value.
Strong points: Interesting wine list. Great use of local products, especially organic vegetables and Shizuoka-bred meat.

Peach growers in Japan proceed through a lot of thinning (fruit pruning) in early Spring to keep and develop only the best fruit. But all those unripe green peaches are not wasted and find their way into many recipes!

Chef Toru Arima/有馬亨さん at french Restaurant Pissenlit in Shizuoka City has found a great way to accommodate them as a scrumptious dessert!

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Green unripe peaches tart!

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Toru cook the small green peaches in compote first and places over marzipan inside a tart made of pate sucree and coats them with a thin layer of translucent jelly of his own.

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The beautiful caramel ice cream and creme anglaise make for the perfect marriage!

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And the Shizuoka-grown organic flowers are not only beautiful but edible!

i forgot to mention that I sampled with beauty with coffee during a short visit to talk business with Toru!

My waist line is going to scream but I don’t care!

PISSENLIT
420-0839 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajo, 2-3-4
Tel.: 054-270-8768
Fax: 054-627-3868
Business hours: 11:30~14:30; 17:00~22:00
Closed on Tuesdays and Sunday evening
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)
Credit Cards OK
Entirely non-smoking!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

French Cake: Shizuoka Tropical Fruit Tart at Patina in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Very friendly and smiling
Facilities: Very clean. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: A true cafe where to relax and enjoy a good light meal any time of the day. Interesting reasonable wine and cider list.

Shizuoka has the mildest climate in Japan after Okinawa which allows for the culture of all kinds of fruit either outdoors or in green houses.
Recently locally grown fruit are witnessing a big increase both in production and consumption.
It seems there is no limit to the varieties!

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Last time i went there for my regular coffee i noticed a new tart being offered at Patina in Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City!

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Shizuoka Tropical Fruit tart with banana, papaya and star fruit!

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Chef Akiko Kondoh/近藤亜希子さん’s tarts look as delicious as ever!

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All these colors reminded me of our tropical French islands in the Caribbean or off east Africa, not mentioning those in the Pacific ocean!

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Can you see the fruit?
The tart is served lukewarm for a perfect balance with the ice-cream!

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Yes, I always reserve this part for the last bite! LOL

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Mind you Akiko’s vanilla and Calvados ice-cream is a good enough reason to visit the place!

PATINA, Café & Brasserie
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 17-9
Tel.: 054-266-9500
Opening hours: 11:00=22:00 (last orders, 21:30)
10:00~21:00 on Sundays (last orders, 20:30)
Closed on Tuesdays

BLOG (Japanese)
Non-smoking until 15:00
Credit Cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

French Cakes: Baked Orange & Cream Cheese cake at Patina in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Very friendly and smiling
Facilities: Very clean. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: A true cafe where to relax and enjoy a good light meal any time of the day. Interesting reasonable wine and cider list.

Yes, I’m a sucked for fruit tarts and always be!
I just don’t know if I wll be able to keep pace,though!

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And the place to find them in Shizuoka City is Patina, a true French style bistro!

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Note that the oranges used in this particular tart are grown in Shizuoka!

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Although Chef Akiko Kondoh/近藤亜希子 is supremely versed in any French gastronomy, her pastry and marzipan would be enough to win prizes back in my home country, France!

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Do I need you to tell you why I keep the crust for the last bite? LOL

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The home-made vanilla and Calvados ice cream will have my American friends screaming for more (pun intended!)!

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The combination of a warm tart, cold ice cream, vanilla and raspberry sauce and raspberry on top of the oranges and cream cheese is so difficult to describe but so enjoyable!

More coming soon!

PATINA, Café & Brasserie
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 17-9
Tel.: 054-266-9500
Opening hours: 11:00=22:00 (last orders, 21:30)
10:00~21:00 on Sundays (last orders, 20:30)
Closed on Tuesdays

BLOG (Japanese)
Non-smoking until 15:00
Credit Cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

The Best Aoshima Mandarines in Japan: Mr. Kuniaki Oishi in Okabe, Fujieda City!

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Mrs. Reiko Oishi/大石礼子さん and Mr. Kuniaki Oishi/大石邦昭さん, Aoshima mandarines producers in Okabe, Fujieda City!

Shizuoka Prefecture, among other products such as green tea, wasabi, strawberries and a lot more, is celebrated all over Japan for its oranges!
The other day my good Australian friends, Nick and Yayoi Shannon, who live in Okabe, Fujieda City called me as they wanted me to meet a neighbor of theirs who had just been awarded the top prize by the Japan Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister for its Aoshima mandarines!

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The Oishi’s Farmhouse!

Interestingly enough it became a real expedition last Sunday as we were joined by another good friend, Robert Hirai, an American friend who is a photographer when not working as a navigator on ships!

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Time slip!

Mr. Kuniaki Oishi and his wife are the 7th generation of farmers living and working in the mountains of Okabe in Fujieda City, an area celebrated for its great agricultural and wild game. They also represent the 4th generation as Aoshima Mandarines growers.

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Shizuoka Governor Heita kawakatsu/川勝平太県知事 tasting Mr. Kuniaki Oishi’s Aoshima Mandarines!
The paper article mentions that they are 1,000 yen worth (10 US$!) each!

The Oishi’s being used to those foreigners living nearby readily took in their stride this invasion with great smiles and true hospitality!
Interviewing them was more a pleasurable and enriching chat than anything else.
Although he received the 2nd top accolade from Shizuoka Prefecture in 2011 and the very top national prize in 2012, Mr. Kuniaki Oshima (71) struck me with his modesty: “I can only say that I finally started to master my skills at the age of 60″! Farmers certainly could impart a lot of wisdom and humility to us city dwellers!

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The “maturing shed”!

Before visiting Mr. Oishi’s fields, we were invited to have a look inside the maturing shed!
The harvest is done in December, which meant we did not interfere too much with the grower’s work.
Mandarines are stored inside a shed to mature for two months before being marketed.
Incidentally, Aoshima mandarines are a variety born a long time ago in Shizuoka Prefecture!

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Maturing certainly requires skills and precise storing conditions.
The temperature is maintained as low as 5 degrees Celsius and a regular air circulation must be sustained throughout the whole shed where the mandarines are carefully stored in the dark.

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Moreover, the shed must be absolutely clean and dry and totally free of insects!
All the wood inside the shed is “dead”, meaning that insects will not find it amenable to their nefarious activities!
We were kindly offered to taste the mandarines out of their boxes.

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Although sweet, the balance in sweetness, acidity and “umami” was beyond words!
The Japanese, judges and growers alike, are very picky in their survey and Mr. Oishi had to satisfy no less than 12 different criteria from shape and sweetness to biting/chewing impression!
Needless to say that coming top in 6 of them, especially overall taste, helped him acquire the top reward!

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Then we all embarked in one car and a small truck for a visiting expedition of the Oishi’s fields covering one full hectare on very steep slopes over 400-meter altitude in the nearby mountains!

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On the way I noticed these electric wires to keep civets, monkeys, deer and wild boars away!

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Recently wild boars have become a real plague!
This cage trap can catch a female and at least three cubs which will be culled and have their meat distributed around!

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A very Japanese contraption consisting of one “rail” to easily carry harvest inside boxes that descend along terribly steep slopes. They have been used for quite some time now but bear in mind that people still had to walk up and down unpaved roads to reach their fields not so long ago!

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Access to the fields is done by small trucks up tortuous roads but all the work has to be done on foot!

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Although we are at an altitude of only 400 neters the landscape made the climb all the worth for it to us city dwellers!

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It’s lucky that the harvesting is done in winter as the scorching heat in summer allows work only during the first and last few hours of the day!

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For all the size of the mountains, space is limited as sun exposure is vital.
Moreover, a big difference of temperature between daytime and nighttime is the first condition for sweet fruit!

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Organic agriculture is impossible in these conditions but Kuniaki Oishi uses only the strict minimum of pesticides and fertilizers he buys from the local government agricultural offices.

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Even so it is back breaking work as the fields and trees have to be provided with mulch and protected with plastic sheets at various times of the year!
No wonder growers never get fat in this area!
And they are so fit!

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And trees have a limited life.
This twenty-year old tree with almost a ten-centimeter thick trunk will have to be cut and replaced in twenty tears time!

It certainly makes you humble to realize all the work behind those fruit we take for granted!
Mr. and Mrs Osihi, thank you so much for your hospitality, patience and great smiles!

Kuniaki Oishi
Aoshima mandarines Grower/Producer
421-1115 Fujieda City, Okabe Cho, Niufune, 192
Tel.: 054-668-0618
Mr. Oishi’s products are sold at the JA stores and other shos, as well as through a very limited private list of customers.

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

French Dessert: Organic Apple Creme Brulee at Patina in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Very friendly and smiling
Facilities: Very clean. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: A true cafe where to relax and enjoy a good light meal any time of the day. Interesting and reasonable wine and cider list.

Anyone with a sweet tooth do like its dessert but will enjoy them all the more when they are made with local products!

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Today at Patina Cafe & Brasserie in Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City, I noticed an intriguing dessert on the menu of the day as I was ordering my usual cappucino!

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Seasonal Creme brulee made with Kougyoku apples. Kougyoku/紅玉/Ruby apples are a Japanese variety renown for it red skin and sweet and sour balance in taste!

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Now, let’s have a look at what’s inside that cute little pot!

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That certainly beautiful and appetizing!

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I just couldn’t wait to break that crispy layer of caramel!

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But one thing at a time!
I first tasted a compote of the same apples.
Incidental these kougyoku/ruby apples are organically grown in Shizuoka Prefecture!
Their slightly tangy taste perfectly marries with the custard and caramel sauce!

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Interestingly one the spoon had broken the caramel layer it didn’t sink into a soft liquid but cut through a cream with the perfect consistence, both soft and firm which allowed for a slow and delicious savoring of the cream together with a piece of the caramel!

SN3O3105

The fact that the apples were first mashed before being incorporated to the cream explains the ability to spoon it without anything breaking or spilling away in spite of the very soft cream!

A little jewel!

PATINA, Café & Brasserie
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 17-9
Tel.: 054-266-9500
Opening hours: 11:00=22:00 (last orders, 21:30
10:00~21:00 on Sundays (last orders, 20:30)
Closed on Tuesdays

BLOG (Japanese)
Non-smoking until 15:00
Credit Cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

Musk Melons: The Best in the World grown in Shizuoka Prefecture! Tasting Heaven!

When it comes to fruit, and especially melons, the Japanese must be the most extravagant farmers and consumers in the World!
Not so long ago Roland Buerk of The BBC wrote a fine article about the musk melons grown in Shizuoka Prefecture:
Check here and you will be convinced I’m not biased!: Shizuoka Musk Melons-Japan’s obsession with perfect fruit by Roland Buerk of the BBC

Last night I received a phone call from a home delivery company checking my address as they were going to deliver me one these extravagant melons today as a gift from a friend!
Would you believe I stayed home all day just for that melon as it arrived only at 4:30 in the afternoon (on a Sunday!)?

Before I start describing the experience let me tell who is growing these beauties:
The Company is simply called Shizuoka Crown Melons and is located in Fukuroi City, although they are actually members of the Shizuoka Greenhouse Growers Association!
Although it is written in Japanese check their homepage here: SHIZUOKA CROWN MELONS.
Also check the CROWN MELON FARMERS INTERVIEW VIDEO!
Mind boggling!

Let me continue today’s story then:

The package! With indications “FRAGILE” and “KEEP IT STANDING”!

Another package inside the first package!
Japanese attention to care and details!

Japan Agriculture Forestry and Fishery Minister Award/Shizuoka Crown Melon/農林水産大臣賞受賞!

Such a beautiful box!
Alright, let’s open it!

English that anyone should be able to understand although the fruit are not exported!

To be consumed between November 16th and November 18th! Let’s hurry, then!

Plenty of explanations for the consumer’s attention!

Well, you must read Japanese! LOL

Actually the pamphlet is very informative, but once again you must be able to read Japanese! LOL again!

The melon!

Note the perfect T-shaped stem!
Would you believe that the melons are brushed every day by hand?

WOW!
Look at that color and the perfect smooth grain of the flesh inside.
The seeds are so small!
Only one melon is allowed to grow on each plant!

The flesh is just perfect with a regular color, a fine grain, juices bursting out but with just the perfect smoothness and firmness for the ultimate bite!

It will be tough to eat other melons after having tasted a Crown Melon, believe me!
It is unfortunate that one can’t convey the perfume and taste on the Internet!

Shizuoka Crown Melon
437-0056 Shizuoka Prefecture, Fukuroi City, Oyama, 239
Tel.: 0538-42-4146
Fax: 0538-42-3208
HOMEPAGE

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

Persimmon Trees: Autumn has come to Mariko in Shizuoka City!

Autumn/Fall is finally arriving in Shizuoka City!
The other day I visited the Mariko Area, one of the main tourist attractions in Shizuoka Prefecture and even in Japan where they were awarded a commemorative stamp!

Issued on October 7th, 2005 [Tokai Route 53 stages by Utagawa Hiroshige/2005.10.7発行東海道五拾三次之内丸子(鞠子)(歌川広重)]

Mariko is naturally an important tourist attraction, but if you walk along the lanes away from the crowds you will discover many farm and old houses worth a second and third look and many camera shots!
let me share the pictures I took on that day with you!

You will find two types of persimmons in Mariko:
Shibu Kaki/渋柿, as above, which are small and pointed and eaten dried as the fresh fruit is too astringent!

More shibu kaki!

For a closer view.
The very thick leaves are still green.
When those redden they are used as decoration on plates under food in Japanese restaurants!

Here is a tree with the second variety of persimmons.

Squat persimmon or Jirou kaki/次郎柿 in Japanese.
Did you know this particular variety was first grown in Shizuoka Prefecture in the 19th Century?
They can be eaten raw as opposite to Shibu Kaki!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Halloween Melon at Cenova Department Store in Shizuoka City!

Shizuoka Prefecture is famous all over Japan for its melons of the highest quality (and price!) in this country!
Just I was shopping this evening I noticed this cute display in the fruit section!

I had a good look, but d\frankly speaking I would be hard put to put a name of the variety.
It was not really ripe either, otherwise that kind of melon would have melted inside!

The melon is genuine but the skin color is probably artificially induced (not exposed to the sun or whatever) and obviously grown only fora decorative purpose.
But it still is worth its entertainment value!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Shizuoka Fruits to Look Forward to This Summer-2: Pione Budou-Pione Grapes

PIONE1

There are a lot of fruit which either originated or grew to be characteristic of Japan.
I’m trying to introduce them to help my vegan and vegetarian (I’m not) friends in particular as fruit can be adapted into so many ways!

1) Nashi/Asian Pear
2) Jirou Kaki/Jirou Persimmon

Grapes are relatively new to Japan, but its people have compensated this with an eye to create new strains with great success. Actually grapes were first cultivated in Shizuoka Prefecture in Meiji Era!

PIONE3
Pione Grapes are grown in aerial style.

Pione Grapes are a typical example.
They are a cross between Kyoho Grapes and Cannon Hole Muscat.
Kyoho grapes (巨峰葡萄) are hemselves a Concord-like cross (Vitis vinifera x Vitis labrusca) between Campbell and Centennial grape varieties.

Kyoho grapes were first produced in 1942 in Shizuoka Prefecture, but were not so named until 1946.

PIONE-MUSCAT
Pione Grapes compared to Muscat Grapes

Pione Grapes (ピオネ葡萄) were also first produced in Shizuoka Prefecture in 1957 by a farmer called Hideo Ikawa.
Pione is an Italian name.

PIONE2
Pione grape

Pione grapes are usually seedless, juicy and very sweet making them very versatile for all kinds of desserts:

PIONE-MOCHI

A typical Japnese dessert:
Pione Grape inside mochi!

PIONE-TART
Pione Tart!
Irresistible, isn’t it?

But Pione Grapes, especially their flesh in “Concasse” style can be used in salads:

PIONE-ORGANIC-MIZUNASU

A dream salad for vegans!
Pione Grapes flesh on organic “Mizu nasu”/Mizu egg plant sashimi.
This particular kind of (Japanese) egg plant is eaten raw.
A little pepper and voila!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, 47 Japanese Farms Through The Eyes of Its Rural Communities, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Shizuoka Fruits to Look Forward to This Summer-1: Jirou Kaki-Jirou Persimmon-Squat Persimmon

JIRO-KAKI1

Jirou kaki or Jirou Persimmons/Squat Persimmons are not to be confused with “normal persimmons”, or heart-shaped Hachiya which is the most common variety of astringent persimmon. Astringent persimmons contain very high levels of soluble tannins and are unpalatable if eaten before softening.

JIRO-KAKI-FALSE

Hachiya Persimmons

The astringency of tannins is removed through ripening by exposure to light over several days, wrapping the fruit in paper for heating it, and/or artificially with chemicals such as alcohol and carbon dioxide which change tannin into the insoluble form. This bletting process is sometimes jumpstarted by exposing the fruit to cold or frost which hastens cellular wall breakdown. These astringent persimmons can also be prepared for commercial purposes by drying.

JIRO-KAKI-TREE

The non-astringent persimmon, or Jirou kaki, is squat like a tomato and is most commonly sold as Fuyu. Non-astringent persimmons are not actually free of tannins as the term suggests, but rather are far less astringent before ripening, and lose more of their tannic quality sooner. Non-astringent persimmons may be consumed when still very firm to very very soft.

JIRO-KAKI-DRIED

Dried Jirou Persimmon

Actually, Jirou Kaki/Jirou Persimmons are the pride of our Prefecture, Shizuoka Prefecture, as they were first grown in 1844 by a farmer called Jiroushi Matsumoto in Mori-Cho, Western Shizuoka Prefecture!
Their trees were finally successfully raised in 1869.

JIRO-KAKI-JAM

Jirou Persimmon Jam

The persimmons were finally given their name, Jirou Kaki, by the Emperor of Japan upon his meeting with Fujitarou Suzuki (the grower of that time) in Mori-Cho where a Shinto Temple is still dedicated to the Emperor of Japan.

JIRO-KAKI-CAKES

In Shizuoka Prefecture, Jirou Persimmon are found under many guises such as cakes (above)

JIRO-KAKI-WINE

Jirou Persimmon wine!

JIRO-KAKI-VINEGAR

Jirou Persimmon vinegar, a rarity created by Bembei Kawamura, the Father of Shizuoka Sake!
It can drunk as a health drink mixed with with good wateror used as a finish on many dishes!

JIRO-KAKI-DRYING

Although I personally like them fresh either as dessert or in salads with vegetables, my favourite is dried persimmons, a big business in Shizuoka Prefecture!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, 47 Japanese Farms Through The Eyes of Its Rural Communities, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Japan Gastronomy and Society: Own picked Straberries on Sale in Shizuoka City!

if you go to the country in Japan, especially in farming-rich areas you will discover many people selling thir own garden/field fruit or vegetables on makeshift stands.

I found this stand yesterday in the entrance of a small company building whose business is totally unrelated to farming but whose owner apparently grows his own benihoppe/Red Cheeks Strawberries.
He had put quite a lot on sale. 300 yen for at leat 500 grams of small but delicious, especilally for jams, is dead cheap!

Since “grown at home” is mentioned the company owner’s family muts be a local farming family!

A simple box is left on the stand for coins to be put inside.
Nobody was ther to look after it.
Back home in France the strawberries and the money box would have disappeared within five minutes!

No wonder Japan is such a safe and resilient country!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, 47 Japanese Farms Through The Eyes of Its Rural Communities, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Dekopon Oranges Producer: Nobuhiko Onuma

Nobuhiko Onuma/小沼宣彦 between his daughter/睦代, and wife, Yoshiko/良子!

Dekopon (デコポン) is a seedless and very sweet citrus fruit, a hybrid between Kiyomi and ponkan (Nakano no.3), developed in Japan in 1972 starting from Kyushu Island. Originally a brand name, Dekopon has become a genericized trademark and it is used to refer to all brands of the fruit; the generic name is shiranuhi or shiranui (不知火). Dekopon is distinctive due to its sweet taste, large size and the large protruding bump on the top of the fruit.
Shizuoka prefecture has become a major producer thanks to its ideal climate.

Okitsu Mountains under a glaring sun.

I recently had the chance to make a new friend, Ms. Chikayo Onuma working as a nurse at the Shizuoka Children’s Hospital, whose parents are producers of Dekopon and other oranges in Okitsu, Shimizu Ku, Shizuoka City!
Her parents were very kind to accept this foreign resident to visit and interview them!
Okitsu in Shizuoka Prefecture is nationally famous for its citrus fruits thanks to an ideal sun exposure and wide differences of temperature between day and night contributing to an extraordinary sweetness of the fruit.

Unfortunately the picking season was finished but we still had a lot to talk about before moving to the Onuma’s home to have a look at their crops.
Mr. Onuma produces an annual crop of 3,000 kg of Dekopon, 1,000 kg of Aoshima (Aoshima Shutarou) Oranges, as well as Kiyomi and Suruga Elegant varieties.

A typical farmhouse in Shizuoka Prefecture!

Mr. Onuma sells some of his crop through the JA but mostly deals with a network of private customers and accepts orders through the phone/fax as long as there are any fruit left. You had better hurry as they will disappear soon!

Mr. Onuma was kind enough to prepare an explanation of the cultivation for my perusal:
May: Flowering
July~August: Pruning and thinning the trees to keep only the best fruit. A neck braking work!
From August: regular watering
About the 20th of November: Each fruit is individually protected with a paper bag. More neck-breaking work!
From January 20th: Harvesting.

But the work is far from being finished as I will explain later!

Moreover, fungicide has to be spread 12 times a year.
Mr. Onuma told me that he keeps any such fungicide to a minimum and does not use any other agrichemicals.

More work is to come as the fruit will be stored in a dark cool shed to mature.
The fruit must attain a level of 13 on the official sweetness scale before they may be called Dekopon.
Mr. Onuma’s crop of Dekopon has been awarded the special appellation of shiranuhi (不知火) by the Prefecture, as a sure mark of its excellence!

Mr. Ozawa’ shiranuhi have even been prized in spite of the fierce competition!

Even Japanese nationals will be hard pressed to pronounce the Kanji for shiranuhi (不知火) properly!

Temperature inside the shed is strictly regulated!

And the place is also kept dark at all times!

Moreover, each fruit has to be individually wrapped in an open vinyl pouch!
I can’t start to imagine all the work and time spent!

Not to mention all the back-breaking work carrying 10 kg trays out and preparing orders!

Mr. Ozawa’s dekopon in my bento!

All this to make sure that all the fruit reach customers in the perfect state!
Thank you so much, Mr. Onuma!

Nobuhiko Onuma/小沼宣彦, Dekopon and oranges producer
424-Shizuoka City, Shimizu Ku, Okitsu Inoue Machi, 177
424-0202静岡市清水区興津井上町177
Tel./Fax: 054-369-2670

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India
Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London
Pierre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, 47 Japanese Farms Through The Eyes of Its Rural Communities, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento,Adventures in Bento Making, American Bent, Beanbento, Bento No, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box,
Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Cooking Cute, Timeless Gourmet, Bento Bug, Ideal Meal, Bentosaurus, Mr. Foodie (London/UK), Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery