Category Archives: Hamamatsu City

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Hana No Mai Brewery-“Kira” Junmai Ginjo “Kura Dashi” Nama Genshu

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I just had the opportunity to taste a very unusual, that is for that establishment, by Hana no Mai Brewery in Hamamatsu City, in my usual not so secret lair!

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The name, ”煌”/”Kira”, could be roughly translated as “bright” and is increasingly used in names.
The sake was sold in Cenova Department Store, Shizuoka City, not in the bottle, but from a tank into a bottle to be closed in front of the customer!
It is a junmai (no pure rice alcohol blended in) ginjo nama (unpasteurized) genshu (no pure water blended in!

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Rice: Yamada Nishiki (Shizuoka Prefecture)
Rice blended to 60%
Alcohol: 18~19 degrees
From the tank on October 1st, 2015

Clarity: very clear
Color: very faint golden hue
Aroma: light, dry and fruity. Discreet. Dry plums, pears
Body: fluid
Taste: dry and fruity attack backed up by puissant junmai petillant.
Complex: dry plums, pears, dry custard.
Lingers for a while warming up the palate before departing on notes of chestnuts, sweet oranges and dry sweet potato.
Varies little with food but for a drier note.
Turns a little sweeter with rise in temperature with sweet potatoes taking the lead.

Overall: a very unusual sake for Hana No Mai Brewery, which should actually appeal more to adults thantheir usual brews.
Best enjoyed slightly chilled on its own.
Would make a superlative aperitif!
Suggested pairings: grilled fish, yakitori.

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, Pie
rre.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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Gastronomic Wine Bar: “BEBER” in Hamamatsu City!

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Service: Smiling, friendly and very attentive
Equipment & Facilities: Overall spotless clean. Small but beautiful washroom
Prices: Reasonable~a little expensive
Strong points International wine list. Japanese whiskeys including one from Shizuoka Prefecture. High standard Chinese cuisine. Bistro gastronomy

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With the ever increasing number of visitors, the City of Hamamatsu City is quickly changing and you do need local friends’ help to keep abreast of the new developments!
One such establishment is BEBER which opened only a few weeks ago!
Incidentally “beber” in Portuguese means “drink”!

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A good friend, himself restaurateur, took us there last Thursday just before it got crowded by all kinds of customers, some of them really influential citizens in Hamamatsu City.
It does not prevent the Master of the Place, Mr. Toshio Iguchi/井口敏郎さん, to be equally attentive and welcoming to all his customers, whatever the status!

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As it is first of all a wine bar, it does have a fine international list!
We started the celebrations with a “vino tinto” from Argentine, TERRAZAS de los Andes, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2005!
Lots of red fruit! A discovery!
Have a good look at the drink menu as it also includes some fine whiskeys, even featuring “Fuji Sanroku” distilled in Gotemba City, Shizuoka Prefecture!

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Chinese-style fresh salad!

Although they have all kinds of bistro favorites from terrine to foie gras, their chef is a talented Chinese Cuisine specialist whose creations are simply perfect with wines!

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Juicy Xiaolongbao/小龍包!

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A exquisite steamed dim sung with lettuce!

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Cold spicy ramen!

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The wine was quickly disappearing and we ordered this reliable Bourgogne Chardonnay (20139 by Jean Bouchard, not far from my very own birthplace!

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Now, this deep-fried chicken in sweet and sour sauce was definitely way above average!

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Talk about global gastronomy: Chinese-style fish and chips with cheese!
The British cannot come up with such a fine rendition!

A first but very short visit which will definitely warrant many more!

BEBER

430-0944 Hamamatsu City, Naka Ku, Ta Machi, 331-13
Tel: 053-452-5711
Opening hours: 18:00~last customer
Closed on Sunday
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK

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, Pie
rre.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

Shizuoka Shochu: Hamamatsu-Tenjigura Distillery-Shusseijo Chu Kome Shochu 25 Degrees

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This is the second kome/rice shochu of the same name produced by Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery in Hamamatsu City but it has the regular alcohol contents, that is 25 degrees!

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Rice
Alcohol: 25 degrees

Clarity: very clear
Color: transparent
Aroma: assertive, dry and fruity. Roses, strawberries, rice
Taste: deep, dry and fruity attack.
Complex: rice, roses, grapes with strong hints of strawberries and faint notes of chestnuts, custard and dark chocolate on the end.
Strong but easy to drink even straight at room temperature.
Varies little with food but for a drier but still fruity general impression.

Overall: very elegant rice shochu!
No wonder is creator is a lady brew master.
Will be eminently enjoyable at all temperatures from chilled on the rocks to blended with hot water, but I still appreciated it most straight at room temperature!
Does marry beautifully with cheese!

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, Pie
rre.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

Shizuoka Shochu: Hamamatsu-Tenjigura Distillery-Shusseijo Chu

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Shochu is becoming increasingly popular with ladies and young people and Hamamatsu-Tenjingura Brewery/Distillery came up with a new product with a lower alcohol content for that purpose!

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Kome/rice shochu
Alcohol: 20 degrees

Clarity: very clear
Color: transparent
Aroma: dry. Rice
Body: fluid
Taste: dry and fruity attack.
    Softer than usual thanks to low alcohol contents, but very solid and pleasant.
Complex: rice, roses, hints of strawberries.
Changes little with food but for more strawberries.
Late appearance of chestnuts once away again from food.

Overall: A shochu for ladies, yes, but gentlemen will also appreciate it.
Somewhat softer and more complex than other rice shochu probably due to the lower alcohol contents.
I tasted it straight at room temperature and I do think it’s the best way to appreciate it!
Also eminently drinkable on the rocks or with a dash of cassis!
Marries splendidly with food!

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, Pie
rre.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

Okuni Shrine (小国神社) in Mori machi, Hamamatsu City!

Okuni Shrine (小国神社)is on of the four major Shinto Shrines in Shizuoka Prefecture although its locatin is not that practical.

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The first of a few torri gates!

If you are not motorized one way to access and make it a worthwhile trip is to board the Tenhama/ Tenryuu Hamanako Railway Line/天浜線 and get down a t small station called Tootoumi Ichinomiya/遠江一宮 and take a free limousine to the Shrine!
Bear in mind there are only few during the day so plan your trip t start early in the day!

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It is located in the mountains all with a deep forest and river!

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The lane leading to it is lined up with beautiful tall cedar trees!

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The large roofed hand-washing stone basin!

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Better come on a weekday as weekends can be crowded!

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One can discover smaller shrines along the entry lane and all arund the main shrine!

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This board depicts the legend of a rabbit admonished by a deity!

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Another smaller shrine!

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Reaching the last torii gate!

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Now, these are very interesting vestiges of an old dead sacred tree!

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It might be dead but its history is preserved and people venerate it in a very unusual way!

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People insert one-yen coins offerings in its bark or rice straw garand!

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The shrine “offices” where worshipers can buy souvenirs or talismans or consult their fortune!

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This side building is actually a Noh theater stage!

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A peek at the stage!

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The main shrine or “haiden”!

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One of the big stone lanterns!

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A giant sacred hammer!

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The rice straw garland and the many prayer bell ropes!

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A pinion with the Emperor’s crest!

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An older shrine beside the main Hall!

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Sake barrel from Hana No Mai Brewery in Hamamatsu City!

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Sake barrels from Senjyu Brewery in Iwata City!

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The torii gate to one of the many side entrances!

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You will discover some interesting promenades through the surrounding forest!

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Complete with traditional bridges!]

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Very old cedar trees!

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Beautiful bridge over a pond to another small shrine!

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Good-bye Okuni Shrine!

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, Pie
rre.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

French Izakaya: Dinner at Kuroneko Tei in Hamamatsu City!

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Service: very friendly and laid-back!
Equipment & Facilities:overall very clean . Excellent washroom
Prices:reasonable~slightly expensive
Strong points:Southern, Italian and ethnic cuisines. All kinds of wine! Mainly local ingredients used.

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Akira Fukui is not only a great chef but he supports actively local producers and fishermen by using as many of their products as possible, thus making Kuroneko Tei a very popular place in Hamamatsu City where it is always a good idea to reserve in advance!

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Apart of the regular menu make a point to check the additions of the day and eventually have a word with “Fuku Chan# before ordering!

Yesterday was a belatedly late visit and we did eat our full. Now, what did we order?

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French Bordeaux white wine to start first of all!

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The snack coming with the first drink!

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A big salad not feature d on the menu!

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Mussels meuniere!

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Mochi Ton pork and raw ham millefeuille!

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Italian or French, difficult to say, but really delicious!

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Red squid sauteed with garlic!

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Change of wine with a South African red!

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Sri Lankan Curry with whole rice!

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Just a little spicy!

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Instead of dessert we opted spaghetti with grilled shiradu!

See you there again soon

KURONEKO TEI/くろねこ亭

430-0931 Hamamatsu City, naka Ku, Shinmai Cho, 315-8 (near Shimizu Bank)
Tel: 053-453-9334
Opening hours: 18:00~24:00
Closed on Tuesdays
Credit cards OK
The second floor can be made all on-smoking!

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, Pie
rre.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

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: One Cup Series 10): Hana no Mai Brewery-Honjozo

A very interesting and reasonable way to taste sake is to acquire one-cup sake!
They also make for cute collection of glasses or cups!

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Now, this is the second tasting of the second batch of Shizuoka Prefecture One Cup Sake I obtained at Matsuzakaya Department Store in Shizuoka City!

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A very flowery label by Hana No Mai/the Flower Dance Brewery in Hamamatsu City!

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Combined with Mount Fuji to signify this is a sake from Shizuoka Prefecture!

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Rice: Brewery-grown Yamada Nishiki
Rice milled down to 60%
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Bottled on March 18th, 2015

Clarity: very clear
Color: almost transparent
Aroma: Strong, dry and fruity. Dark chocolate, custard.
Body: fluid
Tasting: Dry and fruity attack
Complex: coffee beans, dark chocolate, nuts, custard.
Lingers for a while before departing on a softer note with late appearance of dry chestnuts.
Varies little with food, tends to blend with it.
Will turn again drier away from food with strong coffee beans.

Overall: far better than expected for a simple honjozo!
Although tasted chilled, would do well at any temperature.
The kind of sake that would please any one any time especially around a BBQ or a hot pot.
Suggested pairings: stew, yakitori, spicy food, cheese.
A sake for all seasons!

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, Pie
rre.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