Shizuoka Wine receives national recognition!: Naka Izu Winery

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After 10 years of existence, Naka Izu Winery Chateau T.S. has finally recevied the accolade of wine lovers in Japan!

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Naka Izu Winery & Hotel

The winery entered 10 varieties of wines in the Japan Wine Challenge Concours 09.
Its Shida Noujyo Nagano Chardonnay 2008 won the Gold Medal in the New World White Wine Wine Section, and its Shida Noujyo Nagano Chardonnay 2007 won another one at the National Homegrown Wines Contest.

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Both wines made use of a Chardonnay grape strain originally developped in Nagano Prefecture, our northern neighbours.

On the other hand, another white wine made from Chardonnay grape strain developped in Izu City, Shizuoka Prefecture, called Shida Chardonnay won a silver medals in both contests.

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Riesling strain grown at Naka Izu Winery.

The winery grows all its grapes and the wine is aged either in their own stainless tanks or wooden casks depending on the variety, making a real local winery.
Actually, until 1958 wine was produced in many parts of Shizuoka Prefecture, especially near Numazu City and in the Izu Peninsula, but disappeared when the government decided to support sake instead with very substantial subsidies.
Naka Izu Winery is still the only winery in existence in Shizuoka Prefecture.

About time to interview the winery and taste its wines!

Naka Izu Winery Chateau T.S.
410-2501, Shizuoka Prefecture, Izu Shi, Shimoshiraiwa, 1433-27
Tel.: 0120-818-517
Office hours: 09:30~17:00
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES:
-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!, Warren Bobrow, Tokyo Terrace
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

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Today’s Lunch Box/Bento (’09/63)

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I would call today’s bento/box lunch the “Working Man Bento”!
Simple, hearty and healthy!

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Three large o-nigiri/rice balls made of freshly steames rice mixed later with umeboshi/Japanese pickled plums and aka shiso/red perilla leaves furikake/seasoning and wrappe inside large green shiso leaves (the latter are also caleed “ooba/large leaves”)

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Meat garnish was chicken and mushrooms fried in tomato sauce, slightly spicy-style. Actually the Missus made a whole batch of these. I can expect to have some more for dinner!

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The “salad” consisted of a bed of shredded veg topped with cress and plum tomatoes and a potato, cucumber and egg salad.

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The seasonal dessert was fresh (and peeled) figs!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
Bread + Butter
5 Star Foodie
Think Twice
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Hapabento
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Tokyo Terrace

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Cheese Plates at Gentil (’09/09/25)

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Last Friday, as said in previous reports, my two friend students and I visited Gentil, the oldest French restaurant in Shizuoka City.
It is a great and accordingly expensive restaurant, but you confine yourself to a plate of cheese and a glass of good wine, it is actually great value.
Ms. Keiko Kubota is THE authority on any cheese in Japan and actually help mature cheese she acquires all year long in season only.

As we were three of us, she served us two trays of them.

Above picture:
-Top left: “Tsuki no Okurimono/The Moon’s Present”, Cow’s milk, Hokkaido, Japan.
-Top left: Ossau Iraty, Ewe’s milk, Pyrenees, France
-Centre: Bleu des Causses, Cow’s milk, Causses, France
-Bottom left: Mimolette, 18-month old, Cow’s milk, North, France
-Bottom right: Bleu du Vercors Sassenage, Cow’s milk, Alpes, France

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The second plate was an original combination:
-Top-left: Sainte-Maure, Goat’s milk, Loire, France
-Top-right: Aged Camembert, Cow’s Milk, Normandie, France
-Centre: Cosne de Porte Aubray, Goat’s milk, Loire, France
-Bottom left: dried black figs
-Bottom right inside a small dish: “Baby Cheese”, Cow’s milk, Canada!

What did wedrink with that?
A very fine Morgon from Bourgogne, France!

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)

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
5 Star Foodie
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Cheese Monger
Rubber Slippers in Italy

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French Dessert Combination at Gentil (’09/09/25)

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Last night, after we visited Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City, we went to Gentil, the oldest French restaurant in town for cheese (report coming next) and dessert.

The chef at Gentil has just changed and the style is different, but very modern in approach as demonstrated by the combination dessert we were served:

From left to right:
-Caramel ice-cream
-Kabocha/Japanese Pumpkin Creme Brulee
-Fresh kaki/persimmon (my first this year!)
-Banana Cake
-Cassis Sorbet

Definitely extravagant!

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)

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
Bread + Butter
5 Star Foodie
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Tokyo Foodcast
Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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Sushi Restaurant: Sushi Ko (’09/09/25)

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Last night, I took two of my students to Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City to introduce them to the highest quality for the best value sushi in town.
Most sushi restaurants in Japan do not advertize their prices, whereas Sushi Ko does so expcept for the sashimi of thday, which are nonetheless of very good value.

Moreover they serve local seafood whenever possible, and seasonl one only. You do not visit Sushi Ko to fill yourself with cheap fat rolls, but to appreciate healthy top class sushi and sashimi.

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My students, being both ladies. we ordered a Chablis bottle to start.
Halfway, I ordered for myself a glass of succulent Shizuoka Sake, “Shosetesu/正雪 brewed by Kansawagawa Brewery (located in Yui, one of the best spots for fihing in the Prefecture!).
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Sashimi: Katsuo/bonito, Shimaaji/Stripde Jack and Kinmedai/plendid alfonsino

Since the last time I visited the place in June with the Missus, the seasonal fish haven’t changed that much yet and we almost ordered the same.
We started with a plate of sashimi consisting of katsuo/bonito, shimaaji/striped jack (a variety of saurel) and kinmedai/plendid alfonsino (a variety of grouper) all caught off Shizuoka’s shores!

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Next we ordered a “tennen-aji” a saurel caught in the wild as a tataki/Japanese-style tartare served with the rest of the fish.

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The fish being extremely fresh, its bones and head were later served deep-fried/karaage!

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Then, it was for the Sushi Ko classics:
Sushi Millefeuille with maguro/tuna, kyuuri/cucumber, avocado adn topped with tobikko/flying fish roe!

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Piri kara hotate maki/spicy scallops roll. A superlative roll made with with finely cut scallops, tobikko, chili pepper, finely chopped leeks and peanuts with mayonnaise and what else.
A must at Sushi Ko!

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A plate of vegan sushi!

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The last order is unfortunately going to creat consternation among some of my friends in the US: kujira/whalemeat seasoned with a little salt and a good amount of goma a bura/sesame oil without any siy sauce. Succulent!

Sushi Ko
shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho. 2-3-1 (Aoba Koen)
Tel.: 054-2512898
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
Bread + Butter
5 Star Foodie
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Tokyo Foodcast
Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass
Urban sake

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Japanese Cuisine: Buta Miso Tsuke/Miso-pickled Pork

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The Japanese use miso not only for soup or seasoning but also to preserve other foods, eggs, fish and meat in particular
I would like to introduce here a very easy and tasty recipe to preserve and season pork:
Miso-pickled pork!

INGREDIENTS: For 4 persons

-Pork: 4 large slices of 100g each with as little fat as possible
-Miso: 400 g
-Sugar: 80 g
-Mirin/Sweet sake: 3 tablespoons
-Japanese sake: 1 tablespoon
-Ginger: grated, half a tablespoon

RECIPE:

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-In a separate bowl drop miso, sugar, mirin, Japanese sake and grated ginger.
Mix well.

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-In a large recipient drop half of the miso mix, spread all over the bottom and insides of the recipient and flatten it with a spatula.

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-After having placed the pork slices in one single layer, lay a piece of gauze all over the meat (wet the gauze with clean water and press all water out of cloth). Pour the remaining miso mix over the gauze.

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-Spread the miso evenly.

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-Cover with cellophane paper and leave inside refrigerator for 24 hours.

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-The pork will attain a certain transparency upon pickling.

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-Fry slowly on a frypan. Take care not to burn the miso!

ANOTHER DISH SAMPLE:
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RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
Bread + Butter
5 Star Foodie
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Think Twice
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Hapabento

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Japanese Cuisine: Tamago Miso Tsuke/Miso-pickled Egg Yolk

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Eggs are one single ingredient used all over the World (except for the glacial caps mybe!), and people have come up with infinite ways of preserving them.
Tamago Miso Tsuke/卵黄味噌漬け is a popular way in Japan to preserve egg yolk in miso.
I decided to publish this very simple recipe as it could become useful for a tasty decoration!

INGREDIENTS:

-Raw eggs: 2
-Japanese sake: half a tablespoon
-Miso: 50 g
-Sugar: half a tablespoon

RECIPE:

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-Mix miso, Japanese sake and sugar well.

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-Line two cups (narrow bottom and wide top) with gauze cloth (first clean it in cold clean water and press out all water). Pour half of the miso mix on each.

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-Wash the egg and wipe it clean of water. Use it to fashion a “bed” inside the miso.

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-Break the egg and separate yolk from white. Drop the Egg yolk (only!) inside the miso bed. Cover with cellophane paper and leave inside the refrigeartor for 2 days.

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-After the first two days take the cup out and turn the egg yolk over delicately with a spoon. Leave in the fridge for three~four more days.
It should be ready by then!
It can be safely preserved inside a tightly closed tupperware inside the fridge for up to ten days!

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow
Bread + Butter
5 Star Foodie
Elinluv Tidbit Corner
Think Twice
Frank Fariello
Mangantayon
Hapabento

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

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