Italian Cuisine: Dinner at Contorno in Mochimune!

Service: Excellent and very friendly
Facilities: great cleanliness overall
Prices: reasonable.
Strong points: Many local products be they from the land or the sea. Organic vegetables. Car park.
no-smoking-logo1 Entirely non-smoking!
Map

Mochimune in Shizuoka City is famous all over Japan for its shirasu/シラス/sardine whiting but it has other treasures to be discovered such as white peaches, oranges, a whole array of fish and seafood and a more than excellent Italian restaurant, Contorno!
I had never visited it for dinner although I had the occasions to enjoy great lunches there.
I finally had the opportunity when the young IT staff of Agrigraph joined me for dinner on a busy Friday evening!

As I had three specialists armed with all kinds of electronic devices with me, for once I didn’t have to worry about taking photographs!

The heat had been hellish that day so a beer was in order!

All vegetables used at Contorno are cultivated organically at Nagomi Farm in Fujinomiya City and the salmon is smoked on site!

24-months old raw Parma Ham!

The same with an organic vegetable salad! Extravagant!

The Italian wine amateurs will be happy to learn that Contorno has a decent list for all tastes and budgets!

For the connoisseurs!

Contorno is also renown for its pizza entirely prepared, fermented and baked in a large oven on site.
The above pizza is a Mochimune specialty: Shirasu and mozzarella pizza!

A second great pizza made with semi-dried tomatoes (organic) and raw ham!

I judge the quality of an Italian Restaurant on its gnocchi more than anything else!
These gnocchi in peperocino sauce and large prawns are a certainly a must in Contorno!

It certainly deserved a closer view!

If you must have pasta, then I would definitely recommend their short pasta!

And don’t go for anything fancy! The tomato peperocino is the best!

Served with a beautiful piquant olive oil for the customers who like their food spicy!

If you can manage some space in your stomach you must try Contorno’s desserts!
The sole lady among us couldn’t resist this chocolate cake in blueberry sauce!

As for the “boys” it was cappucino! Sorry, I had already sipped half when I took the picture!

See you again in the Fall/Autumn!

CONTORNO
421-0122, Shizuoka City, Suruga Ku, Mochimune, 5-1-10, Sunrise Mochimune (5 minutes walk from Mochimune JR Station. Second stop after Shizuoka)
Tel.: 054-2565877
Business hours: 11:30~14:30, 17:00~21:30
Closed on Wednesdays
Credit Cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)
BLOG

Lunch sets: 1,480 yen~
Dinner: Appetizers: 500~yen, 1,000 yen~
Pasta: 930 yen~
Pizza (oven-baked): 1,180 yen~
Carte available

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Advertisements

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Hana No Mai Brewery-Junmai Chyo Kara Kuchi

Hana No Mai Brewery in Hamamatsu City usually make their sake with their own sakamai/sake rice.
They are known to produce comparatively soft sakes in the Prefecture, but they do have a few brews for fans who like their sakes with more character.

This junmai (no pure alcohol added) has the particularity to be very dry/Chyo kara kuchi/超辛口 and is advertized as such!

Hana No Mai Brewery: Junmai Chyo Kara Kuchi/花の舞酒造・従並み超辛口

Rice: Shizuoka Yamada Nishiki
Rice milled down to 60%
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled on May 30th, 2011

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Very faint golden hue
Aroma: Fruity: banana, pineapple
Body: Fluid
Taste: Lighter attack than expected. Very dry.
Complex and fruity; Oranges, pineapple, custard.
Lingers for a while with dry almonds and hints of coffee beans.
Junmai petillant coming late.
Turns slightly sweeter with food.
Makes a very dry comeback as soon as away from food with a lot of oranges and coffee beans.
Alcohol seems to be more noticeable in spite of usual content.

Overall: As its name indicates, a very dry sake!
Made headier for it if drunk slightly chilled but could be interesting drunk as nurukan/lukewarm as noticed in many local izakayas. It is no wonder to find it in the same izakaya as it has obviously been designed to marry with heavy food!
For dry sake lovers!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Lunch Box: Ikawa Mempa Bento Boxes!

Three-tiered oval-shaped/小判型/lunch box

Although the concept of bento boxes has presently become known all over the World, few, especially abroad/away from Japan, have had the occasion to savor food out of traditional boxes made of highly quality lacquer wood.
There is a simple reason to that: very few artists are still alive plying their trade and craft in an age where almost everything is made of cheap plastic or metal.

Whereas fancy modern bento boxes might possess the appeal of novelty, they will never enhance the sensation, design and taste of the food they contain as much as traditional ones.
There is also a widespread misconception that bento boxes are conceived for children’s lunches. When you discover the looks of sheer envy from work colleagues when they espy one of theirs opening such a box to start a beautiful meal prepared by a loving one you will be convinced that you are indeed missing a true gastronomic experience whatever the cuisine you enjoy every day!

This is the beauty of bento boxes: there is no limit to what food or gastronomy they might contain!

6th Generation Ikawa Mempa Lunch Box Craftsman: Mr. Yoshiaki Mochizuki/望月義秋さん!

Here in Shizuoka Prefecture, Shizuoka City to be more precise, we are blessed with one of the very few true artists surviving, namely Mr. Yoshiaki Mochizuki/望月良秋, the Sixth Generation of the famed Ikawa Mempa Lunch Boxes craftsmen.
Ikawa/井川 is a village located high in the Mountains of the Japan Southern Alps at the northern tip of Shizuoka City.
Mempa/メンパ is the name of the traditional lunch boxes created from hinoki/檜/Japanese Cypresses and Yamazakura/山桜/Mountain Cherry Trees found there in their natural environment.
Although it looks simple enough, the craft is a very precise one and only years of dedication and painstaking work may result in true masterpieces.

Ikawa Mempa Lunch Boxes come in two basic shapes:
Kobangata/小判型/oval-shaped which accounts for 80% of the production.
Marugata/丸型/round-shaped.
The process is basically the same for all, be they round or oval, single, double, triple-tiered or even more.

MANUFACTURE PROCESS

1- KITORI/木取り

Hinoki/檜/Japanese cypresses are measured and cut out into slats according to the size of the bento boxes.

2-KEZURI/削り

The wood is then thinned in three steps with a plane:
Ara kezuri/荒削り= rough plane cutting
Naka kezuri/中削り= intermediate plane cutting
Shiage kezuri/仕上げ削り= finish plane cutting

3- MENTORI/面取り

Rounding the edges with a curved plane.

4- KI HANA/木鼻

Thinning areas where the wood parts come into direct contact to avoid disformation.

5- KIGOROSHI/木殺し

“Koro/ころ”

“Koro” unfurled

The hinoki/檜/Japanese cypress slats are softened by boiling them into water for a full hour, after which they will be curved with the help of a tool called “koro/ころ”.

6- KANSOu/乾燥

Step 1

Step 2

Step 3

Step 4

Step 5

The curved wood slats being secured wooden pegs are left to dry in sunlight for 2~3 days.

7- KABANUI/カバ縫い

Yamazakura/山桜/mountain cherry tree bark strips

After square holes have been have been cut out, the slat is secured with strips of mountain cherry tree strips.

8- SOKOIRE/底入れ

Models for oval-shaped bottoms

Models for round-shaped bottoms

The bottom of the lunch box is cut out of a plank of the same tree in the desired shape.

9- SHIBUSHITAJI/渋下地

The wood is painted twice with a mixture of unripe persimmon powder (kakishibu/柿渋) and red iron oxide powder (bengara/弁柄) to harden it.

10- KOKUSO/こくそ

The space between the bottom and the sides is filled with two layers of lacquer instead of glue.

11- MENTORI/面取

The outside edges formed by the bottom and the sides are rounded with a curved plane

12- SABITSUKE/錆付け

A mixture of fresh lacquer and whetstone powder is applied on the bottom and the cherry tree strips with a bamboo spatula.

13- SABITOGI/錆砥偽

The dried lacquer is smoothed over with a wetted piece of(No 360) sandpaper.

14- SHIBUSHITAJI/渋下地
The whole box is painted again with a mixture of kakishibu/柿渋/unripe persimmon powder and bengara/弁柄/red iron dioxide powder. Once dried, any dust is carefully wiped out.

15- URUSHI HON NURI/漆本塗り

The whole box is painted with lacquer 2 or 3 time in a room free of dust.
The boxes may be painted all in dark colors or dark outside and red inside.

Dark outside and red inside.

Wholly painted with dark lacquer

SPECIAL ORDERS:

Seven-tiered lunch box with a Mount Fuji scenery gold-painted with a hair brush!

Seven-tiered lunch box with a scenery of the Tokyo Tower gold-painted with a hair brush and reflecting the light!

Needless to say that there exists only one unique piece of each of these two masterpieces although Ikawa Mempa Lunch Boxes can be order-made!

For more information on prices, availability and orders please contact:

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Negami Brewery-Tokubetsu Junmai

When I visited Mr. Negami in his brewery in Gotemba City 550 metres up Mount Fuji, I asked him, “Why do you make only Junmai Sake (Sake to which no pure alcohol is added)? After all, you are none among only thirteen in the whole of Japan!”
Before giving me the answer, the brewmaster explained he visited my France, my home country, where he loved the wines so much and then finally replied, “Do you add alcohol to wines? Why should I?”
Although technically incorrect (Port wines for example), I tend to agree with him!

Negami Brewery-Kinmei Tokubetsu Junmai

Rice: Yamada Nishiki
Alcohol: 15%
Water: Mount Fuji Source Water
Bottled in May 2011

Clarity: very clear
Color: Light golden hue
Aroma: Fruity and powerful
Custard, banana.
Body: Fluid
Taste: Fruity attack backed by Junmai petillant
Complex. Oranges, custard, caramel, almonds.
Pleasantly lingers for a while warming up the back of the palate.
Starts liquorish to quickly turn dry.
Dry oranges make a comeback with a faint note of white chocolate, macadamia nuts and coffee beans.
Marries so well with food!

Overall: Very pleasant sake fit for any time of the day or night, chilled or at room temperature!
Drinks so easily.
Personally I prefer to drink it as it is at room temperature on its own for the sheer pleasure of a straightforward sake combining the tastes of old and new!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Italian Gastronomy: Orta Ristorante in Hamamatsu City!

Service: Very friendly and attentive
Facilities: Superb cleanliness through and through and beautiful washroom.
Prices: Appropriate
Strong points: Authentic Northern Italian Gastronomy. Good wine list. Very fresh ingredients, local whenever possible
Entirely non-smoking!

In a Prefecture noted for its superior Italian gastronomy, Orta Ristorante must have earned its place in the top three of this part of Japan with a population equivalent to that of New Zealand!
Sebastiano Bonomi Pattini came to Japan at the tender age of 20 from his native Piemonte and has plied his trade in this country for nearly 15 years now.
A few years ago he left his restaurant in Mikkabi to open Orta Ristorante in the busy centre of Hamamatsu City North of the JR Station.

He chose his place well on the second floor of a building facing busy Act City.

His restaurant is spacious (although you had better reserve!) and overlooking a new green and quiet area recently developed for the benefit of the citizens by the local government.

The whole establishment has been conceived for the best enjoyment of your repast whether in good company or in contented loneliness!
As I live far away from the City of Hamamatsu and therefore don’t know when I will have the opportunity to come again, I opted for the best of the 4 excellent lunch courses, Marchatte!

The first appetizer is a morsel which gives you a clear indication of what to expect!

Mozzarella and ham baked on a crostini!

Naturally, all bread is baked on site!

Home-smoked salmon served as it should be!

Not only beautiful, but absolutely delicious!

Served with savory bread!

Elegant meal in an elegant place!

As I mentioned that I have a fondness for gnocchi more than for pasta (spaghetti et al) Sebastiano came in person to enquire what I would like!

In the end I was served a superlative gnocchi with cheese and broccoli cream sauce with small parmegiano galettes!
Enough to make me come back!

The meat dish certainly deserved the name of fusion gastronomy: Charolais veal from Australia. Extravagant!

Note that the very light polenta was made local corn. Actually all the vegetables were local!

The dessert plate! A real symphony!

Blueberry cheese cake (I think I know where the blueberries come from!), chocolate cake and mango ice-cream. I didn’t leave the sauce untouched I assure you!

Great coffee and petits fours are always a true indication of a great restaurant!

Sassicaia! You couldn’t have a better indication of the wine list!

Well, it is only a queetion of time until I enjoy dinner there!

Chef/Owner: Mr. Sebastiano Bonomi Pattini
Orta Ristorante
Hamamatsu City, Naka Ku, Banya, 675, 2F
tel. & Fax: 053-455-0321
Business hours: 11:30~14:, 18:00~22:00
Closed on Tuesdays
HOMEPAGE
Credit Cards OK

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Chinese Cuisine: Dinner at Shikinjyo (July 2011)!

Service: Very friendly
Equipment: Very clean. Traditional
Prices: reasonable
Strong Points: Beijing gastronomy. Dumplings. Old Chinese rice wines

Is had been quite some time since I visited Shinkinjyo, a Chinese restaurant whose owner and all staff come from Beijing.
They serve authentic Chinese gastronomy and endeavor to introduce new dishes from time to time. All ingredients are fresh and their dumplings are simply first class, without any pretention or ostentation.

They have regular dishes that will never disappear fortunately and we always order them while trying the new offerings.
This dinner of ours might need a second visit very soon as there are just too many of them!

Homely atmosphere!

The salad always offered graciously on the house is certainly welcome!

One of Shikinjyo’s specialties: half-cooked potato salad! Great with any drink!

Sauteed liver and vegetables is a recent addition! Very heathy!

The specialty that everyone asks for: deep-fried minced pork balls!
Served with a special salt mixture!

I never fail to taste one of their old Chinese rice wines!

This one is over 8 years old!

Dumplings of all kinds, fried, steamed or boiled are their true specialty!
Fried leeks and pork gyoza. Full of juices as you break them!

Deep-fried cheese and vegetables Imperial rolls!

Steamed seafood dumplings! Again so juicy inside!

Deep-fried white flesh fish in sweet and sour sauce!

Alright this is all a bit short!
Shall we consider this only as part 1? LOL
Fried pork and leek gyoza!

SHIKINJO/紫禁城
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajo Machi, 3-21-20, Kawai Bldg 1F
Tel. & fax: 054-2742727
Opening hours:
weekdays: 11:30~13:30 & 17:30~22:00
Saturdays, Sundays & National Holidays: 17:00~22:00
Closed on Wednesdays.
Parties welcome

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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

Vietnamese Cuisine: Lunch at Annam (new address) in Shizuoka City!

Service: Smiling, very polite and friendly
Facilities: Superb cleanliness through and through. Superb toilets.
Prices: Appropriate
Strong points: Authentic Vietnamese cuisine by Vietnamese Chef and staff. Fresh products. Private room available and parties welcome in great comfort.
Entirely non-smoking!

Annam, easily the best Vietnamese Restaurant in the Prefecture, has just moved to a new location nearer to the bustling centre of Shizuoka City end of last June!
I finally managed to find some time today to pay them a visit for lunch before checking on their full dinner soon at full leisure!

It is definitely bigger than the old address and more intimate since it is now on a second floor instead of the ground floor.

You can either sit at one of the tables, on a couch along the wall, at the small counter or in a private room!

Although people cannot see from the outside, plenty of view for the guests with enormous bay windows!

A refined corner of Vietnam in the middle of Japan!

Annam’s gastronomy is both classic and modern with fresh ingredients, very light, healthy and satisfying!
To give you e better idea I opted for the set lunch (2,400 yen) which started with a quail eggs soup!

Next, the appetizers dish!

Raw Spring rolls.

Shrimp and green papaya salad.

Nem/deep-fried roll.

Plenty of succulent sauces and condiments to choose from!

Chicken sauteed with honey!

Beef Pho soup!

Very fresh ingredients!

Succulent traditional dessert with tapioca, banana, coconut milk and peanuts!

Real coffee with real milk and real coffee! So elegant!
Did you know that Vietnam is the second coffee producer in the World?

Looking forward to dinner very soon!

Owner: Ms. Le Thi Hong Vinh
Chef: Ms. Nguyen Thi Hong Mai

ANNAM
420-0852 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Kooyamachi, 6-6, Mitduhisa Building, 2F
Tel.: 054-250-2266
Fax: 054-250-2323
Business hours: 11:30~14:00, 17:30~22:30
Closed on Mondays
Parties welcome
HOMEPAGE

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, 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, My Bento Box, 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