Taky’s: Classic Cakes (1)/Apple & Blueberries Tart

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Taky’s opened last year in September and had always kept teasing my mind.
As it is located very near my workplace, I cannot afford making a mistake!
I could not resist any longer this evening. As I had to buy some cake for a student of mine, I had the right excuse!


Taky’s has only a half dozen cakes on display, but they are extremely appetizing.
I was surprised at finding out that this cake shop doubles up as a tiny cafe cum restaurant cum bar in the fashionable Takajo District in Shizuoka City!
Which means that I will have to come again for another reason!

This apple and blueberries tart would please a lot of my American friends with a sweet tooth in spite of its French accent!
The tart itself has been baked beforehand to the exact crispiness and is thin enough so as not to overwhelm you but solid enough as a support.
The basic filling consists of very light marzipan with a touch of Calvados. The blueberries in the middle have soaked their area to perfection while the thin slices of apple lacquered with a fine jam add the perfect touch instead of taking the lead.

Great with coffee. My student let taste bits of it. Not a good idea as I will find myself wih another battle of the bulge!

420-0839 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajo, 1-11-10
Tel.: 054-255-2829
Opening hours: 11:00~22:00
Closed on Sundays

Indian Restaurant: Lunch at Laxami

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So many so-called Indian Restaurants in Japan are either completely walking beside their shoes or a pale copy of an extraordinary epicurean culture that I always warily walk in any such establishment.
Well, this time I needed not worry as I was enjoying the company of my new Indian Cricket friend Deepak who simply said, “just like home!”. The fact that the owner, Mr. Binay Kumar, hails from the same State in India certainly did help!
We had booked lunch as we would be coming between opening hours, which did not seem to trouble the owner, a single proof that pleasing his customers is a rule.
Mr. Kumar had worked for the first restaurant, Kumar in Act City in Hamamatsu cIty, before acquiring it five years ago. Two years later he opened Laxami in the same City, far away from the centre, proving his business acumen.
Lunches come at reasonable prices at 750, 980, 1,450 and 1,500 yen with a 680 yen special for kids. An array of single dishes are avalaible from 630 yen apiece.
Lunnch buffet is on offere on Saturdays and Sundays for 1,000 yen per person.
Not only soft drinks, but also wine, beer and even whiskies are on the menu.
As we were starving we chose the 1,450 yen menu.
I will let judge for yourselves:
Tandoori Chicken and Mutton Kebab

Vegetables Curry (probably a different name!).
Note that there is plenty on offer for vegetarians and vegans!

Mutton curry.

Enormous Naan!
Potato Parantha, Poori, Chapati and so on are also featured on the menu!

Chicken Curry.

Dal Soup. For Vegetarians and Vegans again! Actually Mr. Kumar had a lunch of Dal Soup and Rice later!

Seasoned Rice.
“Don’t break my herat!”, the owner could not help joke!

Laxami Indian Restaurant
433-8122 Hamamatsu City, Naka Ku, Kamijima, 2-1-1
Tel. & Fax: 053-474-0300

Kumar Indian Restaurant
430-7790 Hamamatsu City, Naka Ku, Itaya Cho, Act Tower, 111-2, Act Plaza B1
Tel. & Fax: 053-451-0154

Business hours: 11:00~13:00, 17:30~22:00
Parties welcome.

Cheese Plate at Gentil (2)

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This is the second installment of a hopefully long series of cheese plates served at Gentil Restaurant in Shizuoka City.
The Cheese Sommelier, Ms. Keiko Kubota is the not only the sole Japanese holding the title of compagnon d’Honneur de Taste Fromage in Japan, but she was asked to choose, prepare and serve the cheeses offered to all these vey improtant people at the G8 Summit held last July in Hokkaido.

This time I was more careful with the picture, and I hope you will see it in a better light!

The cheese featured on the above picture are (from left to right)

-Sakura/from Hokkaido, cow’s milk from a cow breed called Brown Swiss.
-“Murasaki Imo”?viole yam chips
-Craquebitte/France, Loire, goat’s milk
-Crutin/Italy, Piemonte cow’s and ewe’s milk with Piemonte truffles
-Bleu d’Auvergne/France, Auvergne, cow’s milk with dry French muscat raisins.


Rowena will be happy to see an Italian cheese, and a great one (it costs a fortune!) featured:


As for wine, the cheese was beautifully paired with a 2001 Monthelie (France/Cote d’Or) by Gerard Doreau!

Restaurant Gentil
Address:420-0031 Shizuoka Shi, Gofuku-cho, 2-9-1, Gennan Kairaku building, 2F
Tel.: 054-2547655 (Reservations advisable)
Fax: 054-2210509
Opening hours: 12:00~14:00, 18:00~last orders for meals at 21:30. Bar time 18:00~23:30. Closed on Mondays.
Credit cards OK
Homepage (Japanese)

Today’s Lunch Box/Bento (37)

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Today’s lunch box is a bit of a repeat, considering it is more a combination of what I had before.
But I’m not one to complain!


The nigiri/rice balls contain beans and hijiki seaweed.
The Missus put the beans and hijiki seaweed on top of the rice before closing the lid and steaming the whole lot. Once ready, she will stir all ingredients before shaping the balls.
Home-made light rice vinegar pickles can be seen in the middle of the nigiri.
On a bed of lettuce she laid some fried veg including soft pimentoes, bricolo and Eringe mushrooms. She added some mini steamed “syuumai” (not home-made!)


The salad consisted of luccola and other light greens topped with plum tomatoes, yakitamago/Japanese omelette and presimmon wedges and mini-kiwi (with a red heart) slices for dessert!

Pretty full, I can assure you!

Shizuoka Izakaya: Kaze To Matsu

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Kaze To Matsu is a great example of a successful Izakaya which shows that a chef’s origins do not matter when recognizing and serving an intelligent combination of produce from Shizuoka and other Prefectures.

Mr. Matsumiya, for all his relative youth, shows a remarkable eclectism when choosing Shizuoka Sake to accompany brews from Gunma Prefecture, his home: Hakauin Masamune (Takashima Brewery, Numazu City), Isojiman (Yaizu City), Shidaizumi (Fujieda City) and Hana no Mai (Hamamatsu City). Naturally, all kinds of drinks, including wine, are available.
The place, seating 11 at the counter and 14 at very comfortable tables, is very popular, and I would definitely recommend anyone to reserve especially on week-ends.
My good friend Patrick and I made a point to come before opening hours to reserve two seats at the counter and we certainly well when the establishment was packed by 18:00!
We are both fans of sushi and ordered the “Special Sashimi Plate”.

From left to right:
“Kanpachi”/Japanese Amberjack, “Tennen Maguro”/Wild Tuna, “Nama Yuba”/Tofu Sheets, “Suwagani”/Suwa Crab, “Kanpachi” again, “Tachiuo”/Scabbard Fish (under the shiso flowers) and “Koushin Daikon”/A red inside daikon variety.

We spotted some fresh seashells on display. I had noticed them before, but I couldn’t remember their name. “Shirogai” is the usual name in Japan, meaning White Seashell.

As they were still alive and appetizing, we opted for a plate of sashimi!
Almost sweet they were, a discovery!

The menu is very extensive and we had to limit ourselves to favourites for our first visit!
The tenpura (above pic) are served one at a time as they should be! Succulent!

Vegetarians and vegans will rejoice to learn that Kaze To Matsu serve “Yuki Yasai Sarada”/Organic Vegetables Salad! Very well-chosen seasonal vegetables only.

A gentle piece of advice:
Whatever you have savoured, do end with their “Tamagoyaki”/Japanese Omelette!
I can assure ou you won’t need any dessert!

Kaze To Matsu
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Hitoyado-Cho, 1-4, 1F
Tel.: 054-251-2004
Business hours: 17:30~24:00
Closed on Mondays
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

Food Art: Eiko Nishida, cooltiger

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I would like to introduce here an extremely talented young artist named Eiko Nishido I have just made acquaintance with.
She has created posters with designs representig food from the four corners of the World on hands and fingers.

Please do visit here HOMEPAGE!
I guarantee you a great discovery!

Above picture shows scenes from “finger food art” 2-day event in Shibuya:
About 110 people came for two days.

As her art is also for sale at very reasonable prices, do consult her bi-lingual Homepage!