French Gastronomy: Lunch at Cava.K. in Kikugawa City!

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Bear stewed in red wine!

Service: Very friendly and attentive
Facilities & Equipment: Spotless clean overall. Superb washroom
Prices: Appropriate. Reasonable when considering quality and originality!
Strong points: Gibier/Game, the best in the Prefecture! Great use of superb local and own garden ingredients. Seasonally cured meat and ham.

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Cava.K. French Restaurant is lost in the mountains near green tea fields in Kikugawa City, western Shizuoka prefecture for a good reason: Chef Hiroyuki Yamaguchi/山口祐之さん wants to stay as close as possible to local hunters for best supply of game whatever the season!

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He also grows his own garden to supply variety to the local products!

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The reason he called his French Resaurant Cava.K. is twofold: “Ca va” in French means “It’s fine”. The district where the restaurant is located is called 沢水加/sabaka. When you that “K” is pronouced “ka” in French, the whole name almost sounds the same!

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The style of the building is certainly original in Japan, like a modern chalet!

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All kinds of original processed foods and presents can be purchased there, too!

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The specialties of the day!
If you don’t understand Japanese, don’t worry, the staff can at least tell it in French!

We came six of us that day for a business lunch. We had to skip alcohol but I can tell you that made it a feast, including game!
Alright, let’s start!

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Akaei ebi shrimp, Aori Ika/great reef squid, spinach (from their garden), soupe de poisson/fish soup and tuile de noir de seiche/squid ink tile.

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Gougere! I had some work to do, explaining all that French to my Japanese colleagues!
I didn’t take picture of the bread, but it was also home-made!

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Another appetizer you will be hard put to find anywhere else in Japan: smoked yamadori sasami/Yamadori Chicken breast, duck and pheasant!

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Another set of appetizers!

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Celeriac, leeks potato soup with Karugamo/duck confit from Kikugawa!

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Marcassin/Young wild boar a la creme, Trompettes de la Mort mushrooms, kohlrabi and pie!

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Shojoin turnip, shiro baigai clam, scallop, Ikawa lotus root, ikura/salmon roe!

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The consomme that was served then was entirely made with wild venison. The last touch was added with fennel!

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The fish dish!
Sole from Omaezaki, with bisque sauce. Local vegetables including Japanese echalette and native corn from Ikawa!

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Actually, before the start of the repast we were requested to choose a main dish from the gibier/game menu:
From top to bottom:
Karugamo/wild duck roast
Pheasant from Kikugawa Roast
Wild boar from Kawane Roast
Japanese deer from Ikawa Roast
Civet Roast (the first ever I’ve heard of it as a game dish!)
Hare from Kikugawa Roast
Asian Black Bear from Kawane stewed in red wine
Asian Black Bear from kawane Roast
Kamoshika Deer hamburger

What do you think we chose?

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Civet roast!
We had some great fun sharing all these dishes between us!

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Hare Roast including its kidneys!

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Pheasant Roast!

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My choice!
Asian Black Bear stewed in red wine!

Important note: for those who think we are eating Japan wild life into extinction, stand corrected! All these animals had to be culled in the wild by professional hunters as they proliferate to very dangerous numbers for the local ecology. At least they become useful!

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One of the best cheese trays in the Prefecture, half of the cheese French, the other from Nagano Prefecture!

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And then it was all kinds of desserts I had very little time to ask about!
I promise to be more careful next time!

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It was certainly a delightful sin to break into them!

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To finish it all chocolate declined into four different symphonies!

Don’t ask me how much we pay! It was ridiculously cheap considering the quality, the originality and the supreme flavors, aromas and savors!

I very much doubt you will find the equivalent in Tokyo, so reserve your train ticket!

CAVA.K.
Chef: Hiroyuki Yamaguchi/山口祐之さん

439-0003 Kikugawa City, Sabaka, 791-11
Tel.: 0537-37-1820
Fax: 0537-37-1850
Opening hours: 11:30^14:30, 18:00~21:30
Parking: 8 cars
Cash only
Reservations advised
Entirely Non Smoking!
HOMEPAGE
BLOG (Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

So Good Sushi Restaurant in Nice France
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, 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, 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, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

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