Today’s Bento/Lunch Box (12/09): Diet Bento!

On the 1st of March I will undergo my annual check up and the Missus wants me (and later too!) to be in proper health when the doctor will play with figures found in my body and blood!
You can expect the same until then, and maybe unfortunately for me, beyond!

She steamed plain rice and mix it later with chopped parsley for color and ingredient balance. She filled about half of the box with it.
She then flattened and fried chicken sasami/breast filets with cheese inside in olive oil and seasoned them with tomato sauce for a beautiful red color. It might be lighter in calories than usual but the design is as important as ever!
She added the final touch with sliced black olives and salad beans.

As for vegetables, she placed boiled broccoli seasoned with crushed peanuts and boiled carrot (she indulged in some typical bento design there!) on a bed of finely chopped vegetables (not visible on the pictures).

Very simple indeed, but beautiful and very tasty!
But I ought to be careful about such comments lest the Missus further diminish the contents!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Gastronome Dragons (3): Sires Robert and John

Komagata Shinto Shrine, Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City, japan!

Dragons are not evil creatures.

You may find some specimens akin to the fallen angels exposed in civilizations which misunderstood their true character and talents, but true dragons have the happiness of mankind in their hearts and ceaselessly contribute to its nurturing whenever they can or are allowed to as shown in this story.

As far as their gender is concerned some are attracted by their opposites while others feel content among similar denizens of their worlds. But plenty are satisfied enough with their own lot and do not feel the obligation to entertain intimate relations with their own kin.

Dragons by essence are long lived creatures with an unequalled wealth of knowledge and experience, which explains why they are so keen on their hedonisitic pleasures.
A true dragon will not bother amass and sleep over riches like some of their poor misled copies in faraway lands.
It, she or he will be constantly in search of new pleasures to share with like-minded souls for the betterment of this sometimes sad World of our own.

This particular dragon is taking this opportunity, while writing in this grimoire in a lair hidden under an extinct volcano in an island famed for its morning sun, to introduce other dragons working hard for the expansion of gastronomic pleasure thanks to the humans who finally started to grasp the art of communicating through the magic of instant scrolls!

SIRE ROBERT

Sire Robert’s Fine Japanese Pottery Shop in Kyoto!

Sire Robert whose ancestors flew from a country ravaged by conflicts to the Land of Promise swam across the oceans to establish himself in this island where he first resided in a lair hidden at the foot of an extinct volcano but established a shoppe to sell and make known the insular great pottery and the artists creating it.
To improve on an already great fame he recently moved to the most venerated city in this island for the pleasure of his customers be they from this island or the whole world thanks to the use of incomparable scroll sending magic!
Do visit his magic grimoire and shoppe where you will find every pottery to grace your home and gastronomic table!

SIRE JOHN

The Magician himself!

Sire John was born in the Land of Promise and flew over the oceans undetected to this island revered for its rising sun quite some time ago.
After observing the denizens of this country he felt enamored with their national drink: Sake (All self-respecting dragons indulge themselves in fine nectars!)!
He then embarked on a mission to make this incredible nectar known to the whole World.. Not does he help people to acquire and savor the beautiful spirit but also offers tours, free magic scrolls, and incredible information on its secrets!
An unassuming Dragon, he has nonetheless achived world fame and happily lives under the alias of World sake Master!
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RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Today’s Bento/Lunch Box (12/08): Kinoko Omu Raisu/Mushrooms Omelet Rice Bento!

For once being very busy today I couldn’t look at the Missus preparing my bento and I had to wait until she brought it to my office before I could discover it!
She made a point to stand by while I opened the box so that she could explain the contents.
How kind of her!

She made “omu raisu/omelette rice”!
Well, we cannot see what is inside the omelet wrap in the above picture but I know that the Missus steamed the rice separately and that she fried the various mushrooms before mixing them with rice and seasoning!
After that, she made an omelette and filled it with mixed rice before turning it over into the bento box!
She then added Ameera Rubbins Pearl Tomatoes, parsley. sliced black olives and boiled Brussels sprouts (with some mayonnaise for the latter) for decoration and balance!

You can make such a side salad box only in Shizuoka Prefecture!

The walnut is not local but the lemon, baby leaves, mini celery and lettuce are.
But you can find fresh sakuraebi/Cherry Shrimps only in Shizuoka Prefecture (that is, unless you have a fat wallet in spite of their relatively low price here!). The Missus deep-fried them before sprinkling them over the salad.

A very well-balanced, nourishing and beautiful bento again!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2012/02/13): A Valentine’s Day Gift: Belgian Chocolate Stout

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

A Valentine’s Day Gift: Belgian Chocolate Stout

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

There are many ways in which to show that special someone just how much you care. The gift of chocolate or flowers is a traditional one. As brewers and beer enthusiasts, though, we prefer a more personal expression: the gift of beer.

New Baird Beer Seasonal Release:
*Belgian Chocolate Stout (ABV 8%):

This lovingly crafted stout derives its name and character from two sources: mashing with generous portions of chocolate malt (both barley and wheat) and fermentation with our Belgian yeast strain. The flavor does not deceive; it is rich and chocolaty, complex and spicy.

Belgian Chocolate Stout is now on tap at all of our Taproom pubs, waiting to be enjoyed by you and that special someone. And if it doesn’t manage to do the trick, I think we also have some real Belgian chocolate on the menu.

In addition to draught, bottle versions also are available for purchase from the brewery.

Cheers,

Bryan Baird

Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE

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-Kinmei Shiboritate Junmai Genshu

Negami Brewery has the particularity to be situated at a height of 550 meters on the slopes of Mount Fuji!
This means the water used for brewing their sake gushes out of the very mountain!

I love the traditional Japanese design!
The crane and turtle/tortoise in Japan are symbols of good luck!

Rice milled down to 55% (extravagant!)
Alcohol: 16~17 degrees
Bottled in December 2011

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Faint golden hue
Aroma: Strong, sweetish and fruity. Elegant. Oranges and nuts
Body: fluid
Taste: Dry and fruity attack backed up with soft junmai petillant and pleasant alcohol.
Complex. Oranges tend to dominate with some nuts and dark cherries.
Disappears fairly quickly on a drier note.
Varies little with food, although make a short turn to sweetness but will turn back again very swiftly to a drier note once away from food backed up with more oranges and dark cherries.

Overall: A very pleasant sake, if a bit strong, to enjoy on its own or with any food.
Despite its extravagant millage (55% for a junmai!) it is a sake most suited for food thanks to its high alcohol contest!
A sure value at any time!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Shizuoka Oden Fair 2012! Sunday 12th!

Men at work!

Sunday 12th saw a bright day with big crowds in Shizuoka City and it was quite a feat to take pictures in that bustle!

Sakura ebi/Cherry shrimps Yakisoba!

This time I started with the side streets of Koya Machi, Gofuku Cho and Shichiken Cho before a last round in Aoba Square and Aoba Koen/Park!

Famous croquettes from Mishima City!

The oden stand of the most famous kamaboko/steamed fish paste shop in Shizuoka City!

The oden stand of Tokaiken, the largest bento shop in town!

Yuujin Izakaya Oden!

Lunch time for many families in Gofuku Cho!

A popular tebasaki/手羽先/Chicken wings stand!

Comfort food for the cold weather!

Shizuoka Young Meat producers Association oden stand!

Oden stand of Ogawa, one of the most famous oden restaurant in town!

Mirukusanbu Izakaya oden stand!

More families gathering for lunch in Shichiken Cho near the Isetan Department Store!

Akai Izakaya oden stand!

Setsuko Oden Izakaya oden stand!

The city had provided plenty of trash bins and kept cleaning up the place at all times!

Back in Aoba Koen the street was even more crowded!

Plenty of wardens to take care of the crossing traffic!

It was just impossible to take pictures inside Aoba Square behind the Shizuoka City Hall!

Some serious drinking even at lunch time!

Any place would do for eating (and drinking!)!

Even plenty of beef (and beer!) was available!

The Shizuoka specialty: Sakura Ebi Kakiage/Cherry Shrimps Tempura!

See you again there next year!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2012/02/10): Seasonal Release – Morning Coffee Stout; Saturday Taproom Brunch

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

Seasonal Release – Morning Coffee Stout; Saturday Taproom Brunch

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

Are you a fan of rich, roasty and robust stouts? Do you love a fresh brewed morning coffee? The answer is yes for me on both counts.

New Baird Beer Seasonal Releases:
*Morning Coffee Stout 2011 (ABV 7.5%):

Each year at Baird Beer we combine our passion for stout with our love of coffee in the brewing of Morning Coffee Stout. This 2012 version is an export-style stout infused with freshly roasted (delivered still warm direct from the roaster of our friends at Arabica Coffee) Kilimanjaro beans. We add these beans — whole, without grinding – directly to the stout in the conditioning tank in what amounts to a cold beer toddy extraction method. The result is a perfectly balanced flavor marriage between stout beer and java beans.

Morning Coffee Stout 2012 debuts tomorrow (Saturday, February 11) at 11:00 am sharp at all of our Taproom pubs in a special Morning Coffee Stout Brunch (see menu details below). It also will be available both on draught and in bottles (630 ml) at other fine Baird Beer retailing establishments throughout Japan.

Special Taproom Event:
*Morning Coffee Stout Brunch (Saturday, Feb. 11, 11:00 am start):

All of our Taproom pubs will be opening their doors early tomorrow to host a celebratory Morning Coffee Stout brunch. The brunch menus are as follows.

(1) Numazu Fishmarket Taproom:

Bagel sandwich (ham, sausage, smoked salmon, or grilled chicken) served with potato salad (600 yen)
Bacon and eggs (cooked to order) with toast (600 yen)
Chocolate French toast (Single 400 yen; Double 600 yen)
Cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese (400 yen)
Side order of fries or onion rings (500 yen)
(2) Nakameguro Taproom:

Brunch plate — French toast, bacon and eggs, cole slaw, fresh fruit and small glass of Coffee Stout (1,300 yen)
(3) Harajuku Taproom:

Eric’s morning pancakes (500 yen)
Coffee Stout-marinated chicken karaage set (650 yen)
Coffee Stout curry rice (650 yen)
(4) Bashamichi Taproom:

Smoked salmon eggs Benedict (650 yen; set @ 1,200 yen)
Salad pizza (650 yen; set @ 1,200 yen)
Super Light Belgian Waffles (45o yen; set @ 1,000 yen)
Banana ice pudding (400 yen)
Please join us at the Taproom nearest you for a wonderful morning and early afternoon of great food, wonderful beer (including Morning Coffee Stout and Carpenter’s Mikan Ale), mellow jazz music and warm camaraderie.

Cheers,

Bryan Baird

Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE

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 Oden Fair 2012! Saturday 11th!

Pho soup oden by Annam Vietnamese Restaurant!

I managed to find some time today to make a quick tour of Aoba Koen in daytime and take the pulse of the Shizuoka Oden Fair 2012 on its second day!

It being a sunny Saturday and National Holiday the place was crowded in spite of the cold!

Families busy eating and drinking!

Anything’s good to attract the customers’ attention!

Oden from Otaru in Hokkaido Prefecture!

Getting ready for a long day’s work!

A popular oden stand!

Kamaboko/Steamed fish paste from Yui!

Korean oden and brochettes!

My favorite oden stand: Sabou Yamako/茶房山幸!

Oden from Yaizu City!

Shizuoka Gourmet Ekinan Sakaba!

Fujinomiya Yakisoba!

A tent crowded with revelers!

Another favorite of mine: Annam Restaurant Vietnamese oden stand!

Vietnamese oden!

Pho soup oden by Annam Vietnamese Restaurant!
Hot and piquant, perfect in that cold weather!

I’ll have a look at the side streets tomorrow!

The event is held in five different locales from the 1oth to the 12th of February in Shizuoka City:
-Aoi Square/青スクエアAoba Park/青葉公園・青葉シンボルロード
Time: 11:00~20:00

-Gofuku Cho Doori/呉服町通り/Shichiken-cho Doori/七間町通り and Koya Machi/紺屋町
Time: 11:00~17:00

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Shizuoka Oden Fair 2012! Friday 10th!

Yamako Oden Stand/山幸!

Yesterday, the first day of the 2012 version of Shizuoka Oden Fair was freezing!
But it was still better than last year when we were beset with rain!

I reached Aoba Park just before dark at about 17:15.

The event billboard!

Although it would be very busy on Saturday and Sunday, it was still quiet as office workers had not left their jobs yet and it was simply freezing under the gutsy wind!

But the hardy people manning the stands kept themselves warm until the night got really busy!

Oden from Himeji in Okayama Prefecture!

Oden from Odawara in Kanagawa Prefecture!

Vietnamese oden!

Korean oden!

My favorite oden stand, Yamako Oden Stand/山幸!

They serve all kinds of titbits apart of oden, notably sausages, meat balls and tororojiru!

The oden!

The miso sauce!

My oden!
The true Japanese comfort food!

Shizuoka Sake served hot at another stand!

Not oden but sakura ebi/Cherry Shrimps from Yui!

As it got darker more people started coming!

No they didn’t serve oden or tomatoes at “Tomato House” but brochettes/yakitori!

I should be able to take better pictures this weekend during the day!
Stay tuned!

The event is held in five different locales from the 1oth to the 12th of February in Shizuoka City:
-Aoi Square/青スクエアAoba Park/青葉公園・青葉シンボルロード
Time: 11:00~20:00

-Gofuku Cho Doori/呉服町通り/Shichiken-cho Doori/七間町通り and Koya Machi/紺屋町
Time: 11:00~17:00

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Shizen No Chikara Organic Farm: Visit by “47 Japanese Farms” in Shizuoka City!

Syunsuke Sano/佐野俊介 of Shizen No Chikara Organic Farm explaining his craft to Roshni Nirody and Sara Harriger of the U.S. Department of State

Ms. Roshni M. Nirody (from New Jersey) and Ms. Sara Harriger (Alaska) employed by the U.S. Department of State working for the Foreign Service Institute, Japanese language and Area Training Center at the U.S. Embassy in Japan paid us a visit in Shizuoka City!
Not only these young ladies speak very good Japanese on top of their native language but even more languages, a undisputable proof of their ability for their jobs!
They have initiated their own grand three and a half year project at 47 Farms to examine Japanese agriculture through interviews and working farm stays with farmers in each of Japan`s 47 prefectural entities!
Read more HERE, it is certainly worth a very long look!
To cut a story short they contacted me as they wanted to discover what Shizuoka Farms had in store for them!
Actually Shizuoka does have a lot, but to make easier for their first visit I and a staff at M2 labo decided to take them to new but already very influential Organic Farm in Shizuoka City and Prefecture called Shizen No Chikara Farm.

Organic Tomatoes!

Shizen No Chikara Farm has plots in Sena, Shimo, Nippon Daira and many others in the Prefecture.
We took them to Sena where the man in charge, Syunsuke Sano/佐野俊介 was kind enough to explain his crafts and answer quite a few very pointed questions from our lady guests!

All the cultivation is organic in the strict sense with no insecticides, or any agrichemicals.
The insects are fought off with natural repellents concocted by the farmers, catch fly sticky tapes or with natural enemies such as ladybugs!

Temperature and humidity are constantly checked and monitored!

For the moment they grow five varieties of tomatoes there!

These will go to the top restaurants in the Prefecture!

Now, Shizen No Chikara succeeded a very difficult organic cultivation at their first attempt: strawberries!

The strawberries are not allowed to come in contact with the floor or soil!
No need to mention this is all daily back-breaking work!

The greenhouse has its own beehive!

Even the beehive is kept super clean!

The bees are vital for a regular pollination and beautiful berries!

Organic mini daikon!

We then proceeded to the plot in Shimo to have a look at the their root and leaf vegetables!

Row of mini daikons!

Komatsuna left to look after their harvested rows!

Hosonegi/scallions/mini leeks!

Leeks are great to fight common colds!

Big white daikons!

Japanese gastronomy wouldn’t exist without these!

Beautiful radishes and turnips just harvested!

The same in their rows!

This visit was all too short for my own satisfaction and I already have invited our sweet visitors to come again as soon as possible!
I’m already planning visits to Numazu and Fujinomiya Cities!
Our two ladies are not only lovers of agriculture but also gastronomes. I have a few breweries and izakayas in mind for them!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Shizuoka Oden Fair Starting Tomorrow!

One of the most celebrated traditional gastronomic events in Shizuoka City (and Japan), the Shizuoka (Shizooka in local dialect) Oden Fair will be held from Friday, February 10th to Sunday, February 12th!

The event has expanded and will be held in five different locales:
-Aoi Square/青スクエアAoba Park/青葉公園・青葉シンボルロード
Time: 11:00~20:00

-Gofuku Cho Doori/呉服町通り/Shichiken-cho Doori/七間町通り and Koya Machi/紺屋町
Time: 11:00~17:00

Many shops, restaurants and izakayas from Shizuoka will sell Shizuoka-Style Oden and more shops from other parts of Japan and even a few foreign restaurants will be doing the same in Aoba Park and Aoi Square.

One the other hand, more shops from Shizuoka will sell Shizuoka-Style oden, and more shops from other areas of Shizuoka Prefecture will serve local specialties in Shichiken-cho., Gofuku Cho and Koya Machi.

Do come early as it promises to be very busy and crazy like in precedent years (and probably more! LOL).

Check the official Japanese HOMEPAGE!

Reports coming soon, of course!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Kitayama Organic Farm: Great Chefs meet Great Farmers in Fujinomiya City!

Fuminori Nishitani/藤谷文紀 of Nori in Fujieda City, Tooru Arima/有馬亨 of Pissenlit in Shizuoka City and the Hirakakis, Masaaki and Kiko/平垣正明・紀子 at Kitayama Organic Farm/北山農園 in Fujinomiya City!

Today I finally had the honor and pleasure to introduce two of the very top chefs in Shizuoka Prefecture, namely Fuminori Nishitani/藤谷文紀 of Nori in Fujieda City and Tooru Arima/有馬亨 of Pissenlit in Shizuoka City to the Hirakakis, Masaaki and Kiko/正明・紀子, owners and producers at Kitayama Organic Farm/北山農園 in Fujinomiya City!
This had been long in the offing and the three of us decided to drive this Tuesday all the way from Shizuoka City to Fujinomiya City at the very foot of Mount Fuji to visit the Organic Farm of the Kitayamas not only for a formal meeting but also to establish a gastronomic event to take place in the very near future!

The Hirakakis have refurbished this ancient farmhouse on their own!
Both were professional photographers before deciding to venture in organic farming!

Pure water gushing down the slopes of Mount Fuji is one reason why Fujinomiya City is so celebrated for its superlative agriculture!

Having gone through the necessary introductions I made myself scarce after a while to let them discuss their plans.
The two chefs had struck on the idea of a collaboration dinner at Restaurant Pissenlit on the 10th of March based on the vegetables grown by the Kitayamas whose merits I had praised for some time.

Some of their vegetables on the table around which they were sitting…

Delicious pickles from the same vegetables.
Sorry for the fuzzy pictures but it was very dark inside the farmhouse!

More pickles…

While they were deep in talks I took a peek inside a greenhouse behind the farmhouse.
What are these?

All kinds of sliced radishes and turnips left to dry!

Swiss chards!

I came back to find them snacking on dried sweet potatoes!

Artichokes that will be harvested beginning of next summer!

Time had finally come to make a grand tour of the 3 ha where the Kitayamas grow more than 190 varieties of organic vegetables at different times of the year!

Golden carrot!

Burgundy carrot!

Cute orange carrot!

Purple daikon field!

The purple daikon!

To be frank, there were so many kinds I didn’t have the time to write down their names! Shall we call these mini thread purple and white daikon?

Komatsuna!

Romanesco broccoli!

Red daikon field!

Organic cabbages!

Organic red cabbages!

Shimonita leeks field!

Highly valued variety of leek in Japan!

Some of the beauties I took back home!

Looking forward to visiting the Kitayamas again next spring!

KITAYAMA ORGANIC FARM

Masaaki and Kiko Hirakaki
418-0112 Fujinomiya Shi, Kitayama, 3102
Tel./Fax: 0544-25-2795
Mobile phone: 090-2261-8821
HOMEPAGE
Private orders welcome over the phone!

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)
E-Mail: pissenlit2008@ybb.ne.jp
Credit Cards OK
Entirely non-smoking!

NORI

426-0204 Shizuoka Ken, Fujieda Shi, Tokigaya, 864-3
Tel./Fax: 054-641-4778
Opening hours: 11:30~14:00; 18:00~22:00
On reservation only for dinner
Closed on Tuesdays and first Monday
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese, but do check it for great photographs of the house and garden!)
Entirely non-smoking!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Gastronome Dragons (2): Dame Nami and Sire Argentum Vulgaris

Komagata Shinto Shrine, Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City, japan!

Dragons are not evil creatures.

You may find some specimens akin to the fallen angels exposed in civilizations which misunderstood their true character and talents, but true dragons have the happiness of mankind in their hearts and ceaselessly contribute to its nurturing whenever they can or are allowed to as shown in this story.

As far as their gender is concerned some are attracted by their opposites while others feel content among similar denizens of their worlds. But plenty are satisfied enough with their own lot and do not feel the obligation to entertain intimate relations with their own kin.

Dragons by essence are long lived creatures with an unequalled wealth of knowledge and experience, which explains why they are so keen on their hedonisitic pleasures.
A true dragon will not bother amass and sleep over riches like some of their poor misled copies in faraway lands.
It, she or he will be constantly in search of new pleasures to share with like-minded souls for the betterment of this sometimes sad World of our own.

This particular dragon is taking this opportunity, while writing in this grimoire in a lair hidden under an extinct volcano in an island famed for its morning sun, to introduce other dragons working hard for the expansion of gastronomic pleasure thanks to the humans who finally started to grasp the art of communicating through the magic of instant scrolls!

DAME NAMI

Mom’s Shrimp Ball

Dame Nami originates from the same Island as this Dragon but she swam across (instead of flying over) vast expanses of ocean to reach the Land of Promise where she presently resides with her soul mate.
A very shy Dragon she has taken upon hereself to impart her knowledge of the gastronomy of her birthplace and adoptive land.
Her shyness is only a wise foil and she imparts an untold wealth of secrets to her apprentices tharough a clever use of modern magic allied to her inherent powers and those of her ancestors!

SIRE ARGENTUM VULGARIS

Witches Brew!

Argentum Vulgaris is a venerable Dragon (like this one?) who may not reveal his true name as he is an archivist.
Although his main interest tends to fall on Things That Fizz & Other Stuff, he scours the universe from the other side of this World in search of gastronomic knowledge to record it on his public grimoire accessible to all.
Having amassed an inimaginable hoard of treasure for all to share during his incessant voyages and meetings with creatures of all genres and births he is nonetheless quick to belch fire on anything ot anybody he does not deem fit to appear in front of him.
A Dragon to treat with care and respect but quite endearing in this Dragon’s eyes!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Weird japan (6): Fur-coated Dinosaurs!

Fur-coated T. Rex!

It’s been very cold recently in Shizuoka City which rarely sees tempratures go under zero (Celsius) and some people are taking care of their pets!

Fur-coated Stegosaurus!

There is a fashion clothes shop in Shichiken-cho, Aoi Ku, Shizuoka City which displays a collection of fairly big dinosaurs in their shop window and eevery winter they make a point to comfort them with real fur collars in spite of keeping them indoors!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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

Bryan Baird’s Newsletter (2012/02/05): 10-Year Anniversary Release: The Carpenter’s Mikan Ale

Baird Beer & Taproom Events Bulletin
bryan-sayuri.gif

10-Year Anniversary Release: The Carpenter’s Mikan Ale

Dear Taproom Friend & Baird Beer Enthusiast:

It was back in the fall of 2001 that the builder of our Fishmarket Taproom, Nagakura-san, who since had become a stalwart Taproom patron and loyal friend, brought to me in my little backroom brewery a crate of mikan fruit freshly picked from his family orchard. “Can you use these in a beer?” he inquired. “If not, just share them with customers and your family.”

I, like many professional brewers, harbored a prejudice against fruit beers. Why? Because most of the ones available tended to be gimmick beers, brewed not with real fruit but rather processed extracts, that were designed to appeal to people who didn’t like beer to begin with. However, I quickly decided to formulate a beer that incorporated the carpenter’s mikan fruit. Not only did the idea of using a fresh, local, minimally processed ingredient fit perfectly with the Baird Beer philosophy, but the mikan fruit was delicious. It’s vibrant citrus character, I thought, could be combined in a wonderfully complementary way with various citrus-forward hop varieties being cultivated in the western United States.

The first batch of the Carpenter’s Mikan Ale (all 30 liters of it), was poured, with a tiny bit of trepidation, to Fishmarket Taproom customer-friends who had gathered there at 8:30 am on a Monday morning to view the 2002 Super Bowl (a game that pitted the then powerhouse St. Louis Rams against the upstart Tom Brady-led New England Patriots). The Patriots won their first Super Bowl; the Carpenter’s Mikan Ale won the hearts and the drinking loyalty of all who gathered that morning.

The Carpenter’s Mikan Ale 2012, the ten-year anniversary version, will begin pouring at our Taproom pubs just before the 8:30 am (Monday, Feb. 6) kick-off of the 2012 Super Bowl (NY Giants vs. New England Patriots).

New Baird Beer Seasonal Release:
*Carpenter’s Mikan Ale 2012 (ABV 6%):

The mikans used in this brew are fresh, succulent, and local — harvested on the Heda land and by the hand of our carpenter friend, Nagakura-san. The Baird brewers hand-process the harvested mikans, shaving off the outer skin of the peel and pressing the juice. Both peel shavings and juice are added to the brew during wort production and before fermentation. The mikans serve to add depth and complexity to an already sumptuous ale; their role is to complement, not dominate.

Once again the character of this year’s version is marked most notably by the succulent aroma and piquant flavor of sweet-tart mikans and their wonderfully symbiotic interaction with our selected hop varieties (Nelson Sauvin, Cascade, New Zealand Cascade, Ahtanum).

In addition to our Taproom pubs, the Carpenter’s Mikan Ale will also be available either on draught or in bottles (630 ml) at fine Baird Beer retailers throughout Japan beginning Tuesday, February 7.

Cheers,

Bryan Baird

Baird Brewing Company
Numazu, Japan
HOMEPAGE

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