Category Archives: Cocktails

Fruit Cocktails by Masayoshi Tainaka at Bar Le Refuge (1): Kiwi Fruit!

Service: Pro and very friendly, if a bit shy
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great Fruit Cocktails. Very quiet and relaxing bar. Difficult to find liqueurs.

Shizuoka Prefecture is actually the third producer of kiwi fruits in Japan way ahead of the rest!
It is full season for all kind of varieties during the winter and here is another basic recipe for any kind of this exquisite fruit!

INGREDIENTS:

Kiwi fruit: 1
Sugar (if possible “wasanbon satou/和三盆砂糖”): 2 small teaspoons
Bacardi white rum: 30 ml
Crushed ice
Mint leaves

RECIPE:

Put the cut kiwi, sugar, Bacardi white rum in a blender and blend roughly.
Taste and rectify with a dash of rum if necessary.
Add crushed ice and blend again until smooth.
Pour into an elegant cup glass.
Decorate with a half slice of kiwi fruit and a sprig of fresh mint.
Provide straws.

Very sophisticated and satisfying freshness.
A lady’s favorite, but as a man I was extremely pleased!
A very healthy cocktail actually!

BAR Le Refuge
420-0858 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenma-cho, 9-15, Ribelute-Hirano 1F-B (within walking distance from Cenova)
Tel.: 054-221-0339
Opening hours: 18:00~02:00
Closed on Sundays
HOMEPAGE/BLOG (Japanese)

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

Bartenders Club Shizuoka 3: Masayoshi Tainaka at Bar Le Refuge

Service: Pro and very friendly, if a bit shy
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great Fruit Cocktails. Very quiet and relaxing bar. Difficult to find liqueurs.

The Bartenders Club Shizuoka was founded last month by 7 celebrated bartenders all owning their own cocktail bar in Shizuoka City to not only promote their businesses and make fruit cocktails in particular more accessible to customers but also to make products and their farmers better known to the public.
From January they will create cocktails from a designated Shizuoka producer and his/her fruit or vegetable at regular intervals.
Moreover, the producer will be introduced in blogs and bars to prove the traceability and safety of the delicious fruit or vegetables.

But let me continue the introduction of those seven “samurai” and their establishments with Masayoshi Tainaka at Bar Le refuge!

As its name says “Le Refuge” is an establishment away from the bustle of the center of town which offers an haven of tranquility and privacy.

The menu sign outside is welcome because this is a dark if every safe street at night!

As I do not use flash as a rule the establishment does look dark from outside!

But the inside is cozy with diffused lights.
When you learn that it used to be a car park it is certainly a great improvement!

The solid wood counter does not sit more than 9 and Masayoshi Tainaka/田井中正剛 does accept in groups of more than 3 so as to preserve the calm and welcoming atmosphere of his establishment!

Masayoshi already had 8 years of bartending experience in Shimizu Ku where he hails from before he opened his haven in May 2008.
An accomplished cocktail bartender he is always willing to venture into new concepts but his forte like his same-minded friends is fruit cocktails!

Kiwi Fruit Cocktail (coming in next article!)

Strawberry cocktail!

If you are of the lone night owl tribe, or if you wish yourselves away from it all with a special companion, Le Refuge is the place in the new “secret street” in town!

BAR Le Refuge
420-0858 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Tenma-cho, 9-15, Ribelute-Hirano 1F-B (within walking distance from Cenova)
Tel.: 054-221-0339
Opening hours: 18:00~02:00
Closed on Sundays
HOMEPAGE/BLOG (Japanese)

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

Fruit Cocktails by Wataru Matsumoto at Botanical (1): Kiwi Fruit!

Service: Pro and very friendly.
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Splendid washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great fruit cocktails. Always keen to learn from customers! Very comfortable cocktail bar.

Shizuoka Prefecture is actually the third producer of kiwi fruits in Japan way ahead of the rest!
It is full season for all kind of varieties during the winter and here is a basic recipe for any kind of this exquisite fruit!

RECIPE:

Kiwi fruit: 1
Home-made limoncello (Italian lemon liqueur)
Sugar syrup: 1 teaspoon
Ice
Tonic water

Peel and manually crush the kiwi fruit finely to a pulp.
Pour inside the glass part of a Boston Shaker with all the other ingredients.
Shake well.
Take out cleanly half of the ice.
Add tonic water and stir gently.
Pour the lot in a tulip glass and decorate with fresh mint.

A very refreshing liquid dessert!
Great balance between sweetness and tanginess!
As it is low in alcohol it will suit young people and ladies!
It actually contains an excellent amount of very healthy ingredients thanks to the fresh kiwi, the lemon and the mint!

BOTANICAL (Comfort Bar)
420-0082 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 1-6-13, Shade Bldg, 1F
Tel.: 054-221-8686
Opening hours: 17:00~01:00
Closed on Mondays.
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

Bartenders Club Shizuoka 2: Wataru Matsumoto at Botanical

Service: Pro and very friendly.
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Splendid washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great fruit cocktails. Always keen to learn from customers! Very comfortable cocktail bar.

The Bartenders Club Shizuoka was founded last month by 7 celebrated bartenders all owning their own cocktail bar in Shizuoka City to not only promote their businesses and make fruit cocktails in particular more accessible to customers but also to make products and their farmers better known to the public.
From January they will create cocktails from a designated Shizuoka producer and his/her fruit or vegetable at regular intervals.
Moreover, the producer will be introduced in blogs and bars to prove the traceability and safety of the delicious fruit or vegetables.

But let me continue the introduction of those seven “samurai” and their establishments with Wataru Matsumoto at Botanical!

Wataru Matsumoto/松本亙 at Botanical (Comfort Bar) is not only an expert at his trade but is always keen to venture onto new paths and promote his peers!
Actually his establishment has turned into the meeting point of officionados always ready to share their views and enthusiasm with their neighbors whatever their social standing. Botanical is the place if you enjoy a nice and productive chat with your fellow drinkers and Wataru!

Kiwi cocktail (recipe in the next article!)

Wataru had already no less than 16 years in the trade in two different establishments before going independent with his cocktail bar Botanical (Comfort Bar) away from the bustle of central Shizuoka City on the 25th of July 2009.
His establishment looks like a European brick house with windows allowing for a discreet peek inside or outside ensuring both enough privacy and openness.

Wataru naturally will produce exquisite fruit and vegetables cocktails but will also please everyone with an enormous range of cocktails, fruit juices and even delicious coffe and tea for the non-drinkers you might encourage to come!

BOTANICAL (Comfort Bar)
420-0082 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 1-6-13, Shade Bldg, 1F
Tel.: 054-221-8686
Opening hours: 17:00~01:00
Closed on Mondays.
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

Fruit Cocktails by Masato Matsumura at Juillet (1): Squat Persimmon

Service: Pro and very friendly, if a bit shy
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great fruit cocktails. Doubles up as a coffee-bar. One of the rare establishments selling top-class cigars!

Squat Persimmons, called jirou Kaki/次郎柿 in Japanese) were actually first grown in Shizuoka Prefecture back in the 19th Century!
There are in full season now and can be appreciated as fruits, vegetables for salads and of course as cocktails!

RECIPE

Ripe squat persimmon: 1/2 (one half)
Havana Club Rum (red): 40 ml
Orange juice: 15 ml
Home-made Star Anise syrup: 2 drops
Crushed ice: 1 tablespoon

Peel and cut the persimmon in quarters and drop all ingredients inside a blender bowl. Use blender or even better a bar mix blender to attain the right consistency. Do not overblend it as it will become too liquid.
Pour in a semi-long glass.

Very deep and fruity taste with a great balance between acidity and sweetness with a tangy note, the whole enhancing greatly the exotic flavors of the persimmon!

To drink slowly!

JUILLET
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajyo, 2-10-8, Passsage Takjyo, 1F
Tel,: 054-273-5755
Opening hours: 12:00^24:00 (~21:00 on Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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

Bartenders Club Shizuoka 1: Masato Muramatsu at Juillet

Service: Pro and very friendly, if a bit shy
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom.
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great fruit cocktails. Doubles up as a coffee-bar. One of the rare establishments selling top-class cigars!

The Bartenders Club Shizuoka was founded last month by 7 celebrated bartenders all owning their own cocktail bar in Shizuoka City to not only promote their businesses and make fruit cocktails in particular more accessible to customers but also to make products and their farmers better known to the public.
From January they will create cocktails from a designated Shizuoka producer and his/her fruit or vegetable at regular intervals.
Moreover, the producer will be introduced in blogs and bars to prove the traceability and safety of the delicious fruit or vegetables.

But let me first introduce those seven “samurai” and their establishments starting with Masato Muramatsu at Juillet!

Juillet is located in a very quiet neighborhood on the firstt floor the “Passage Takajyo” building in Takajyo, a district replete with higher quality great restaurants, izakayas and bars.

You will be forgiven if you think it is another fashion shop at first!
But newcomers will soon discover this is a little haven away from the crowds all in sober and elegant white surroundings.

Actually Juillet is open at unusual hours (12:00~24:00) as it doubles up as a coffee-bar all day, too, where one can savor Masato’s wife’s cakes and his own scones!

Before Masato, a native from Yaizu City, opened his cocktail bar in December 2010 he had already had spent 15 years in the trade in the Kansai region and Kyoto where he met his future wife!

Shizuoka squat persimmon cocktail (recipe in next article!)

Masato is not only an expert in fruit cocktails, but he will be happy to concoct fresh fruit juice for non-drinkers apart of coffee, tea and soft drinks!

And Juillet is one of the rare establishments providing cigars of the best class!

JUILLET
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Takajyo, 2-10-8, Passsage Takjyo, 1F
Tel,: 054-273-5755
Opening hours: 12:00^24:00 (~21:00 on Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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

Fruit Cocktails by Wataru Matsumoto: 14-Jaboticaba No1

Service: very professional and friendly.
Facilities: great washroom, great cleanliness overall.
Prices: reasonable, good value.
Strong points: Fruit cocktails. Cozy and a comfortable, for ladies and gentlemen alike.

This is the fourteenth recipe of a (hopefully long) series of cocktails concocted by Wataru Matsumoto, owner/bartender at BOTANICAL (Comfort bar) in Shizuoka City.

We called this particular cocktail “Jaboticaba No1” as I plan another visit to Nishikawa Garden and bring back more of these rare (in Japan) fruit!
You will find them only in a few orchards in Kyushu and Okinawa Islands and only one more away from these islands in Shizuoka City!

INGREDIENTS

-Jaboticaba: 5~6
-Tanqueray Gin: 1 measure
-Creme de Cassis: 1 dash
-Cointreau: 1 dash
-Cranberry Juice: 1/2 measure
-Ice

RECIPE

-In the glass half of a Boston shaker, drop the jaboticaba inside after having cut them in halves and taken out their pips.
Crush them as much as you can with a pestle.

-Add the Gin, Cassis, Cointreau and Cranberry juice.

-Pour ice in the metal glass of the Boston shaker. Drain any excess water. Transfer the ice into the glass half of the shaker. Close and shake well.

-Pour into a Martini glass through a strainer. Decorate with a Jaboticaba fruit.

Another very refreshing cocktail for hot summer evenings. Beware of the alcohol amount as it also disappears quickly!

BOTANICAL (Comfort Bar)
420-0082 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 1-6-13, Shade Bldg, 1F
Tel.: 054-221-8686
Opening hours: 17:00~01:00
Closed on Mondays.
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

Fruit Cocktails by Wataru Matsumoto: 13-Leaf Ginger & Watermelon

Service: very professional and friendly.
Facilities: great washroom, great cleanliness overall.
Prices: reasonable, good value.
Strong points: Fruit cocktails. Cozy and a comfortable, for ladies and gentlemen alike.

This is the thirteenth recipe of a (hopefully long) series of cocktails concocted by Wataru Matsumoto, owner/bartender at BOTANICAL (Comfort bar) in Shizuoka City.
No worries about copyrights as Mr. Matsumoto is only too happy to share his secrets!

Now this cocktail conceived as a kind of Salty Dog is very much a Shizuoka-style cocktail as the leaf ginger and watermelon were grown in our Prefecture!

INGREDIENTS:

-Fresh leaf Ginger: 1 (if unavailable use as fresh a root as possible or pure ginger juice)
-Watermelon 1 wedge
-Beefeater gin: 1 measure
-Ice cubes : 1~2 large
-Salt

RECIPE:

-Apply salt over the rim of a large glass like one in the picture above. Drop large cubes of ice in it.

-Grate the fresh leaf ginger to extract its juice.

-Cut the watermelon into small pieces (discard the seeds!)
Reduce to pulp (you must be able to almost “eat” the watermelon.

-In a large tumbler pour the gin, leaf ginger juice and watermelon.
Mix well and pour over the ice for a good chill.

A very refereshing cocktail for hot days and nights.
Beware, it tends to disappear quickly!LOL

BOTANICAL (Comfort Bar)
420-0082 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 1-6-13, Shade Bldg, 1F
Tel.: 054-221-8686
Opening hours: 17:00~01:00
Closed on Mondays.
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