Japanese Fish Species 14: Salmon-Sake/Shake-鮭

SAKE-1

Salmon is a favourite almost everywhere on the Globe, but it is in Japan that you can enjoy it in the most numerous manners!

Like every other fish it has many names according to season and place:
Shirozake/White Salmon, Akiaji or Akizake for Autumn Salmon, Shake in Tokyo.
In Spring it is called Tokishirazu.
I don’t have to tell you there are many, many names for it all over the world!

SAKE-SUJIKO

Its roe, before processing, is called Sujiko/筋子 in Japanese, whereas the salmon roe, once treated, is called Ikura/イクラ.

SAKE-ROE-SUSHI

Many Japanese appreciate the roe untreated, but more people enjoy it on top of rice as it is with some soy sauce and grated wasabi.

SAKE-SUSHI

It also makes for some splendid colourful creation on a plate of sushi!

SAKE-SUSHI-2

As oshizushi/pressed sushi, it can make some very interesting combinations with the salmon flesh and roe.

SAKE-GOHAN

Have you ever tasted Sake Gohan/Salmon Rice?

SAKE-OSHIZUSHI

Slightly smoked the Japanese way, It is extensively used in the making of bentoes!

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

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Japanese Ladies Fashion in Shizuoka 14: Mother and Daughter!

Maybe I could say that it is never too early nor too late to become fashionable!
Today was a hot day and being a Saturday a lot of people were aout shopping.
Such a mother and daughter is still very much unusual in Japan, considering the mother is nearer fifty than forty of age…
I can’t feel the presence of a man in this family…

Note the shoes! I’m pretty sure they were bought in the same shop!

And both are very proud of their thin long legs!
Definitely a rare occurence but I’m not one to complain!

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

Japanese Fish Species 13: Mackerel-Saba-鯖

Mackerel or saba is a fish eaten over the whole Northern Hemisphere and does come under many varieties and names.
In Japan it is mainly called “Saba”, “Masaba” or “Sekisaba”.
In this country it is mainly caught off Oita, Saga Prefecture, although quite a few are caught off our coasts in Shizuoka Prefecture, especially off Yaizu.
They feed on plankton mainly.

They are prepared and cooked in many guises. In France, my birthplace, they are steamed and then pickled in white wine and spices before being canned.

Naturally tinned mackerel is available in Japan,too!

In Northern Europe they are also eaten half raw as smorgasbrod and pickled fish.

It can be appreciated as sashimi, but it must be absolutely fresh and is best served with grated fresh ginger and lemon.
As far as sushi is concerned, “masaba” variety is best

Saba Konbujime nigiri.

It is especially popular as “oshizushi” (pressed sushi).

Double oshizushi!

My preference goes for Saba konbujime.

Saba Bogata

The mackerel is kept inside a variety of wet seaweed for an hour or so before put whole on top of a long “bar” of rice, then cut to size.

Saba Heshiko Zuke.
Saba/Mackerel has been a staple fish in Japan since immemorial times.
One way to conserve it for better transport away from the shores was “Saba Heshiko Zuke”, that is, pickled in miso and sake white lees.

Saba/mackerel is easily grilled, either on the stick as above,

or grilled and served cut in slices.

The same grilled saba can be served as oshizushi/presed sushi!

Saba can be also served to a tasty crispiness by deep-frying it!

Or simmered the Japanese way with miso, sake, soy sauce, ginger and mirin!

A very versatile fish!

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

Hamburgers in Shizuoka 2: Taiwan Hamburger at Gonta Chaya!

Service: easy-goin, smiling and very friendly.
Facilities: old but clean.
Prices: very reasonable, extremely good value.
Strong points: Enormous portions but very healthy slow food on the whole
no-smoking-logoentirely non-smoking!

Gonta Chaya (notice the no-smoking sign!)

This all started with an article posted by my new foodie friend at Local Lemons who wrote an article about the trouble she bumped into thanks to MacDonald’s who threatened to sue her for using the word “Mac” in the name of her new restaurant in SanFrancisco:

To state the obvious, the notorious diner, thanks to its untold wealth, is not only making a profit out of its dubious junk food, but is also suing (for money!) everyone in sight at the mere mention of the word “mac”. I wonder if all these friends of mine with a surname starting with mac or Mc will be one day forced to change it!

I do not like the burgers of that company for the simple reason that they are unworthy when it comes to nutritious value and health damage!

Unpretentious decor in Gonta Chaya. Keep to the taste!

Alright, let’s stop babbling about the horned liars and talk about real food, and slow at that!

Gonta Chaya (Manki Neko) was opened on April 15th, 2008 in Sengen Street, the thoroughfare leading to Sengen Shrine, the major Shinto Shrine in Shizuoka City. Husband and wife were originally born in Yamaguchi and Aichi Prefecture but moved to Shizuoka about 12 years ago.
They always had wanted to offer slow (and real) food and finally got their wish when they open Gonta Chaya in our city.
Not only they do greatly care for good food, but also for their environment as they uncompromisingly banned smoking from their premices!

Have you heard of Maneki Neko?

They started as a Taiwanese-Nagoya-style ramen restaurant but heir love for good meat and hamburgers incited them to add the American delicacy to their menu.
And they certainly haven’t achieved half-measures, and that with ridiculously cheap prices (count 80~85 yen for 1 US $/10 % reduction for people over 60!):
Burger menu (ramen and others is another long and yummy propostion!):
Sengen Junior Burger: 350 yen
Sengen Burger: 500 yen
Sengen Double Burger: 700 yen
Sengen Triple Burger: 999 yen
Super Sengen Burger: 750 yen (drink included)
Super Sengen Burger Double: 1,100 yen ( ” )
Sengen Oyako Burger: 300 yen
Sengen Burger Set (Lunch only)

What did I choose!
The Super Sengen Burger!
An incredible half-pounder of Australian beef, not overcooked but slow-cooked (be patient!) to the perfect cripsy outside and juicy inside!
It is further enhanced with a crispy fried piece of bacon!

As for the Super Sengen, the buns are mercifully thinner but still home-made and toasted to a crisp bite.
You are going through a real maze of tastes thanks to sauces and dressings added in the right proportion.
Open/lift the bun, and you will discover a full meal with a load of fesh vegetables!

The cheese is real sliced cheese and the egg is fried to a juicy peak!
It is a full meal, I can’t guarantee you!

The place is open for lunch every day, but for dinner only on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
They offer plenty to drink from Shizuoka Sake, Shizuoka Tea Shochu, Shochu, German and japanese beer, wine and soft drinks.

They also can lodge foreign backpackers for a good price in their home above the restaurant! Will write an article about that son!

Are you convinced?

(Maneki Neko) Gota Chaya
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Baban-cho, 117-1 (just past the big red Torii Gate at the entrance of Sengen Street
Tel.: 054-254-2701
Business hours: 11:00~14:30, and dinner on Tuesdays and Thursdays

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

Japanese Ladies Fashion in Shizuoka 13: back to the 60’s?

Sissi, Quizoxy and Bena nDR will have to help me define this fashion appearing more and more with the warmer days!

I actualy met those two young ladies (definitely not girls) outside Good Old Table Hamburger Restaurant and they gladly accepted to pose for me although in exchange I had to pose with each of them and take them in pictures with their camera as well!

We even exchanged names!
The lady on the right named An/杏 definitely reminds me of Janis Joplin while Midori/美登里 looks so much like the ladies I loved back in my hippie days in the 60’s!
Don’t ask me their age, which I basically know, but they are definitely adult! They had come all the way from Makinohara City, a long ride by car as no train goes there unless they took a train from Shimada City. It is farmland famous for tea and our two “country girls” came to spend the week end in Shizuoka City for sightseeing and shopping.
I actually found them cute small as they were (they barely reached my shoulder, and I am small!)!

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

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Fuji-Takasago Brewery-Shiboritate Diamond Fuji Tokubetsu Junmai

Fuji Takasago Brewery in Fujinomiya City chose a Diamond as their emblem some time ago and they are producing a whole series with their mark on labels.

You will find it even on their caps!
Actually the emblem is a Diamond with Mount Fuji inside!

The pink color and the small label across the bottle are definitely celebrating the cherry blossoms!

Rice milled down to 60%
Dryness: + 5
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Pasteurized inside the bottle
Limited production
Bottled in February 2012

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Almost transparent
Aroma: Assertive and fruity. Banana, melon. Sweet alcohol
Body: Fluid and slightly syrupy
Taste: Strong junmai petillant attack with a lot of fruit.
Complex. Turning very dry inside the palate.
Melon, oranges, almonds. Disappears on an ever drier note
Dry oranges take the upper hand with food.
Stays very dry with food.
Stays dry but acquires more fruitiness once away from food with a comeback by nuts and oranges.

Overall: A very pleasant sake probably best appreciated slightly chilled.
Typical Shizuoka sake for all seasons.
Equally enjoyed on its own or with food.
The strong junmai petillant and oranges make for a heady sake!

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

Hamburgers in Shizuoka 1: G.O.T. Hamburger at Good Old Table in Shizuoka City!

Service: Very Friendly
Equipment & Facilities: Old but clean. Very clean washroom
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Hamburgers and Tec-Mex gastronomy.

I’ve always wondered about the meaning of “Junk & Soul Food”!
Friends of mine had told me their hamburgers were nice enough so I took the opportunity to visit the place during my lunch break today!

The whole place is inspired by US and Mexican lore, but I’m sure it is a lot cleaner!

The writing on the walls certainly invites you to enjoy the food! LOL

Have a look at their “newsletter”!
Someone might feel inclined to give an American English lesson!
Although I’m sure no one did in their four years of existence!

The menus are everywhere, on the tables, pinned on the walls and even in the washroom!

The menu on the table!

My order: GOT (Good Old Table) Hamburger Lunch Set including potatoes (Fried or mashed), soup, salad and drink (I had a hot coffee).

Hot soup and mixed coleslaw salad.

The GOT hamburger!
The size is definitely American!

You cannot eat it with your fingers as it is a nikomi/slowly cooked and simmered style.
Forks, knives and spoons are provided.

I had chosen mashed potatoes to scoop with all the hamburger sauce!

It actually makes for a copious well-balanced meal!

And yes! The meat was tender and properly cooked!
And very tasty! Heads and shoulders above McDonald’s. And volume for volume, cheaper!
A very good place indeed for hungry expats and Japanese alike!

GOOD OLD TABLE
420-0858 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenmacho, 8-15, Asahi Bldg. 1F
Tel.: 054-273-0707
Opening hours: Monday~Saturday, 11:30~15:00, 18:00~02:00. Sundays. 12:00~22:00

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