Category Archives: Shimada City

Shizuoka Tourism: Shizuoka Fujisan Airport in Shimada City!

At long last I was able to make use of the aiprort they built in 2008 in Shimada City, Shizuoka Prefecture under the name of Shizuoka Fujisan Airport, that is the airport that welcomes you to Shizuoka, the home of Mont Fuji!
Why did I use it?
Because I paid a short visit to Taiwan.
I traveled from Shizuoka City, and you will discover how easy and practical it has become to travel from and to Shizuoka Prefecture!

The above map will you give you an idea of our location!
Now just follow me!

You can always board the bus from Shizuoka JR Station, platform 4, but even more practical for people who live in Shizuoka Cty is the bus station at Cenova Department Store where you are protected from all nature elements.
First go to Gate 6!

Gate 6!

The route!

The schedule: far right column!

You can’t miss the bus!

Shizutetsu Company Limousine type bus!

You can pay cash or use a Shizutesu Line Prepaid Card.
Fee: 1000 yen per person for a 52-minute trip.

The airport in day time.
Note that drivers can leave their car at the airport for free as long as they want in the 1000-car parking lot!

The entrance at night.

Past the entrance.

Just look around you in the lobby and you will know why the Airport is called “Fujisan/ Mount Fuji”!

A modern rendition of the sacred mountain!

Internet service available (not free, though)!

Plenty of drinks vending machines available.
Incidentally, the washrooms are spotless clean!

Plenty of local souvenirs in wait for you!

Plenty of miniature models! Shizuoka is the world capital of miniature models!

Kokko/Chick cakes!

Green tea, of course!
Shizuoka produces more than 45% of all tea in Japan!

Introduction of Shimada City with a personal greeting to Taiwanese visitors!

Introduction of the nature habitat surrounding Mount Fuji!

An original size painting of Mount Fuji! (not for sale!)

Lots of shopping to do, and basically all local products!

Shizuoka Tea!

Shizuoka sake!
Some of the best and rarest in Japan!

More of them and even rarer Shizuoka shochu!

The perfect gift!

Chibi Marukop, the TV manga character which made Shizuoka and Shimizu Ku, Shizuoka City, famous all over Japan and beyond!

Kameya (Mishima City) Company’s wasabi products!
Shizuoka produces 80% of all premium wasabi in Japan!

Tamaruya (Shizuoka City) Company’s wasabi products!

Miniature models of FDA/Fuji Dream Airlines (Shizuoka-based) airplanes!

If you are hungry. a restaurant is waiting for you upstairs, notably featuring local sushi!

Most of the fish comes directly from nearby Yaizu Harbor!

More food including local unagi/eel!

Plenty of drinks also available!

Practical system!
Select your food or drink, pay and hand the ticket over to the staff!

There is also an observation deck!
Pity it was night by then!

Note that the airport is located in the middle of nature away from cities!

Christmas is drawing near!

Inside view from the observation deck.

And then, it is the next step through the Customs!
Can you see the official trying to tell me not to take pictures? LOL

Another souvenir shop inside the waiting lobby.
I wasn’t allowed to take pictures of the articles on sale, though…..

Plenty of snacks and drinks for those who can wait until they are inside the plane!

Waiting patiently inside the spotless clean little waiting lobby.

Good-bye!
See you in Taiwan!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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: 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!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-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: Oomuraya Brewery-Wakatake-Oni Otome Sachi-Tokubetsu Junmai

Oumuraya Brewery in Shimada City has been long famed for its “Oni Goroshi/Kill the Goblin” sake brand.
This year they felt that Oni/Goblins should not be confined to males only!
So they came with cute “Oni-Otome/Lady Goblin” series obviously to kill the sake lovers!
This the third one actually, brown color after the previous pink and blue labels. A fourth white label will appear next winter!

Incidentally “Sachi” means “Dry” in this case!

Rice milled down to 60%
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees
Dryness: 1
Acidity: 1.3
Amino acids: 1.2
Bottled in September 2012

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Very faint golden hue
Aroma: Discreet, fleeting. Pineapple, oranges
Body: Fluid
Taste: Dry and fruity attack backed up with alcohol and junmai petillant
Lingers for a while getting even drier with pleasant alcohol warming up the back of the palate.
Complex and fruity.
Almonds, dark chocolate, macadamia nuts followed by drier almonds and faint coffee beans.
For all its sweetish start as indicated + 1 level, the transition to dryness is very accentuated and lasting.
Changes little with food. except with a little rise in sweetness with more coffee beans appearing.
Drinks easily with any food.
Tends to become more complex just after food with new facets.

Overall: A great sake to enjoy with any food, especially izakaya gastronomy.
Changes little with food.
Very pleasurable on its own.
Another sake fit for any food or party.
And that label is so cute!
Kill me with love and sake!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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,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!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Soba Restaurant: Setsugekka in Shimada City (Late Spring 2012)!

Service: Very friendly and attentive
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom
Prices: reasonable
Strong points: High quality soba. Beautiful tempura. Great local sake

It is a pity that Shimada City is almost 30 minutes away from Shizuoka City, or I would be constantly finding myself at Setsugekka Restaurant!
Actually, Shizuoka is a big Prefecture, even by Japanese standards. It takes no less than 3 hours to travel all the way from Shinohara in the west to Atami in the east, and add almost another hour to reach Shimoda at the extremity of Izu Peninsula!

We took the opportunity of a trip to Tenryuu to stop on the way and pay them a belated visit!

View of the inside seating.
We came early enough to secure the small “room” by the window!

The little detail that makes the difference!

Chilled soba/buckwheat tea served in hot weather! It will be warm in cold weather!

Whatever you order you will be served this delicious soba tofu with kinako/grilled soy bean powder!

Now, what did we have?
My worst half ordered the Kamo seiro/鴨せいろ/(hot) Duck Stew with cold soba.
I ordered a slight variation of the Dragon’s order: Kamo Sasami Seiro/鴨ささ身せいろ/ (hot) duck Breast Fillets with cold soba!

But before that I could help savor their dashi tamagoyaki for which they are also famous!

Served with grated daikon and pickled leaf ginger, a little piece of gastronomic art!

Served with finely chopped onion, grated wasabi and pepper as extra condiments for the soup!

My order!

Juwari/100% soba/buckwheat noodles!
You dip them in the duck soup first!

My duck!
It also includes duck meatballs concealed under!

The Missus’ duck!
Little difference in look but not the same quality! LOL

The dessert including lime sorbet is always offered as service at the end of one’s meal!

Can’t wait for the next visit!

SETSUGEKKA/雪月花
Shimada City, Hontouri, 2-3-4
Tel.: 0547-35-5241
Opening hours: 11:30~14:30, 17:00~22:00
Closed on Monday and third Tuesday
HOMEPAGE
Entirely non-smoking for lunch!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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, 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!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in kanzai by Nevitt Reagan!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Oomuraya Brewery-Tokubetsu Junmai-Oni Otome Yume

She looks cute, doesn’t she?
Actually, you should beware…
Oomuraya Brewery in Shimada City is celebrated for its brand “Oni koroshi/Kill a Goblin”, meaning that the sake is so good it would overwhelm a Japanese ogre.
Now, the brewery has come up with a dangerous “partner”, “Oni Otome”/ “The Goblin’s Sweetheart” and topped it with “Yume/Dream”! Brrrr….

Rice milled down to 60%
Alcohol: 16 degrees
Dryness: + 2
Acidity: 1.3
Amino acids: 1.2
Bottled in February 2012

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Faint golden hue
Aroma: Assertive, fruity, sweetish and flowery.
Pineapple, vanilla, oranges.
Body: Fluid, slightly liquorish
Taste: A little dry attack backed up by junmai petillant.
Fruity and complex. Elegant. Pineapple, oranges, faint dark chocolate.
Lingers for a while warming up the palate.
Ending on a softer dry note with almonds and cherries.
Turns on a lighter note with food along an accent on oranges.

Overall: A sake probably best enjoyed on its own or as an aperitif.
Light and easy to drink.
Tends to a back seat with food.
A sake which should please the younger generation and ladies in particular.

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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: Oomuraya Brewery-Wakatake Risshun Asa Shiborit Junmai Ginjo Nama Genshu

Another long name for an annual limited nectar by Oomuraya brewery in Shimada City!

Now, what does “Oomuraya Brewery-Wakatake Risshun Asa Shiboritate Junmai Ginjo Nama Genshu” stand for?
“Wakatake” is the name of Oomuraya Brewery’s main brand name.
“Haru Asa Shibori” means this sake had just been pressed on a Spring morning.
“Junmai Ginjo” is a premium level for a sake to which no alcohol was added.
“Nama” means it was not pasteurized.
“Genshu” means that no water was added.
A sake as it came out of the pressing!

The paper envelope attached to the neck contains a five yen coin for good luck!

Rice milled down to 55%
Alcohol: 17~18 degrees
Bottled in December 2011

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Faint golden hue
Aroma: Puissant. Flowery. Fruity, banana, Macadamia nuts, vanilla. Pleasant alcohol
Body: Fluid
Taste: Strong attack backed up by pleasant alcohol and junmai petillant.
Fruity and complex: banana, oranges, vanilla, pears.
Lingers for a while warming up the palate.
Disappears on a dry note with almonds and macadamia nuts.
Great balance between fruit and acidity.
Changes little and drinks well with any food.

Overall: A traditional limited brew typical of Oomuraya Brewery’s approach.
A very solid and strong sake, but nonetheless elegant in its superlative balance between fruit and acidity.
A sake perfect with izakaya gastronomy!

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

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 Gastronomy: New Year’s Lunch at Setsugekka Soba Restaurant!

Yuzu/Lime and Jyuwari Soba!

Service: Very friendly and attentive
Facilities: Great overall cleanliness. Beautiful washroom
Prices: reasonable
Strong points: High quality soba. Beautiful tempura. Great local sake

It is a tradition in Japan to eat soba on the New Year and the Missus and I do not hesitate to spend some time in the train to savor them at our favorite soba restaurant, Setsugekka in Shimada City!

Next to the Restaurant is the great site of Oomuraya Sake Brewery (with the brewmaster standing outside as we arrived!). No wonder the sake served at Setsugekka are superlative!

If it’s available, make sure to take the small room overlooking the street!

A nice little corner away from the crowd!

But the whole place is so pleasant and comfortable!

The kitchen!

A nice little snack coming with the first drink: Soba tofu coated with kinako!

Very Japanese!

Another snack: deep-fried soba!

The soba tray is set on the table before the first tempura is served!

But first, the appetizers!

Miso yaki! Miso paste mixed with whole soba seeds cooked under the grill.

Plain juwari/100% buckwheat noodles in cold water to allow you to appreciate their true original taste!

Buckwheat/soba tofu served in soy sauce with grated yamaimo, whole grilled buckwheat seeds and grated wasabi!

Shimonita/下仁田 leek tempura with katsuobushi!

Bamboo shoot, carrot and taro tempura!

Shrimp and lily bulb kakiage tempura!

Next, the soba! All seiro style!

I had two types of soba, while the Missus had three: first elegant yuzu/lime jyuwari soba!

Plain thick jyuwari soba!
Note the well-used vessels!

Plain thin jyuwari soba!

And the desserts!

A rare buckwheat ice-cream!

I still haven’t visited the place at dinner! Next article?

SETSUGEKKA/雪月花
Shimada City, Hontouri, 2-3-4
Tel.: 0547-35-5241
Opening hours: 11:30~14:30, 17:00~22:00
Closed on Monday and third Tuesday
HOMEPAGE
Entirely non-smoking for lunch!

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

Japan Tourism: Ooi Shinto Shrine in Shimada City!

Torii/Portal at the entrance of Ooi Shinto Shrine

Whatever City you visit in Japan, down to the smallest mountain village, you will discover at least one Shinto Shrine venerated by the locals. And if you are lucky enough to visit them during traditional holidays or festivals they become an unending source of lore study and photography!

Hand-washing fountain.

How do you recognize a Shinto Shrine from other cult sites?
It is actually very simple even if you can’t read any Japanese!
1) The entrance is always marked with “torii/鳥居/portal”, however tiny the shrine.
2) You will usually find a hand-washing fountain/basin.
3) Entrance is free contrary to some of the shrines of other beliefs. Actually you will often see children playing in their yards in daytime.

Ooi Shrine garden

Now, if you happen to pass through Shimada City, by road or train or on your way from the International Airport take a couple of hours off for a leisurely visit of Ooi shrine/大井神社 as it is only a 10-minute walk from the railway station!
It is just the right size and a true representative of the long local history and culture.
It is also within walking distance to places such as Setsugekka Soba Restaurant where you could take a beautiful lunch before proceeding to the next stage of your trip through Shizuoka Prefecture and Japan!

Shimada Obi Festival Dancer Statue

Shimada is celebrated for its Shimada Obi/belt Matsuri/Festival, an event officially designated as one of 20 strangest/most original festivals in Japan. It is held every 3 years on the Years of the Tiger, Snake, Monkey and Wild Boar!

A young dancer of the other celebrated Shimada Festival, the 300-year old Daimyo Gyoretsu, which imitates the procession of a grand jumangoku (one hundred thousand koku, units of rice) daimyo with a total of 250 marchers stretching over 500 meters!

The New Year is an important time for the Shrine to collect money through the sales of New Year decorations!

The New Year is a great time for photography when people of any age and station visit the shrine!

New Year Decorations sales booth.

The Shrine has a small and cute garden with a carp pond and arched bridge!

2012 being the Year of the Dragon, so it would be a good idea to search for hidden representations of the fabled creature!

An ancient hand-washing basin inside the garden!

Traditional paper lanterns/chōchin (提灯), make for great photographs!

A sacred cow, symbol of fertility and wealth!

A “Kappa”!

Keep your eyes open and you will discover some very intriguing statues such that of a “kappa/河童”, the Japanese cousin of the Scottish kelpie!

The French will be glad to discover frogs everywhere!

More dragons spouting water instead of belching fire!

Lions help the dragons guard the shrine from evil spirits!

Looking forward to meeting you at the next shrine!

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

Soba & Tempura at Setsugekka!

Service: very friendly and attentive
Equipment: Very clean. Splendid washroom.
Prices: reasonable
Strong points: Top-class soba, sake and tempura! Great traditional Japanese atmosphere.

For the last 10 years Setsugekka/雪月花 has achieved fame in Shimada City and in the whole Prefecture not only for their soba/buckwheat noodles but also for their magnificent seasonal tempura and sake from Shizuoka Prefecture, especially those of the neighboring sake Brewery Oomuraya!

Setsugekka is conveniently located less than 10 minutes walk from Shimada JR Station.
It looks very simple from outside but the interior is very cozy and traditional.

it is all warm and comfortable wood inside!

But I have a marked preference for the little room just beside the entrance overlooking the outside street!

Deep-fried soba crackers with the first drink!

There are many menus and carte to choose from.
The best way to order is probably to choose one of the set menus and add to it later!
The above appetizers came up with a set menu:
Soba yaki consisting of soba flour mixed with miso and grilled (just love it!), marinated mushrooms and cream cheese with soy sauce jam!

And we were immediately into tempura mode.
We had ordered two different menus for a photo festival!
Above is “kogochi fish” and “nanba shrimp”!

“Kuruma ebi/large prawn”! The whole was edible!
A real piece of art!

All local vegetables: yellow pimento, sweet potato, plum tomato and ice plant!

A great way to present local sake!

A delicacy you will find only in Shizuoka Prefecture: “Sakura ebi kakiage/cherry shrimps tempura”!
With local “leaf ginger and “shishito/chili pepper”.

Local vegetables again: leaf ginger, sweet corn and ice plant!

Now, this is a very unusual tempura: “sakekasu/sake white lees tempura”! The white lees came from the neighbors, Oomuraya Brewery!

Setsugekka can easily organize a full meal for all tastes!
Cuttle fish sashimi!

The full duck set with its gizzards, liver and breast!

And we were at last into soba mode, all basically in “seiro fashion/served cold”, all “jyuwari/100% buckwheat flour”!

Soba of a different color!

Perfect texture!

And for dessert: buckwheat and green tea sorbet! A real delicacy again!

As this month of June saw their 10th Anniversary we were offered some buckwheat seeds to plant!

I hope you understand there will be more reports coming! LOL

SETSUGEKKA/雪付き花
Shimada City, Hontori, 2-3-4
Tel.: 0547-35-5241
Business hours: 11:30~14:30, 17:00~22:00
Closed every Monday and 3rd Tuesday
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
POPCORNHOMESTEAD in Tokyo by Joan Lambert Bailey,
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

Italian Cuisine: Shizuoka Agricultural products: Fennel Gratin at Osteria Porta Porta!

Service: Very friendly and attentive
Equipment: Great general cleanliness
Prices: reasonable
Strong points: Great appetizers. Mainly local vegetables. Good wine list.
Non smoking at lunch time!

Chef Hidetake Suzuki/鈴木秀武 has his own “secret” source of vegetables in his own home-town, Fujieda City, about 20 minutes away by train from Shizuoka City.
When I say “secret”, it is actually more or less true as the farmer who grows these Italian/French vegetables do it on the chef’s request.
Although the two of us will visit that particular garden very soon, I am not allowed to divulge the name or its address!

Regular customers or friends at such an establishment do not need to look through a menu. A quiet word to the waitress (“please ask the chef to prepare a small antipasto misti for a start”) and a succulent array of appetizers will quickly materialize!

The artichoke also comes from that “secret” garden in Fujieda City!

Beautiful Ameera Tomatoes (and other vegetables) from Shizuoka Prefecture!

But I came for this: fresh fennel grown in the “secret” garden!

Fennel gratin!
It was on the specialty of the day menu last week and although it had disappeared I knew there was still some of the vegetable in the fridge!

Incidentally, when I was a kid there were a lot of leafy vegetables I wouldn’t eat including fennel.
My departed Mum must be screaming at me from where she is seeing me having developed a craving for them!

A very light bechamel sauce emphasized the natural taste of the fennel.
As it was hot I did take my time to savor it! LOL

In France we usually boil or steam the fennel beforehand or even fry it to soften it first, but it becomes a totally different dish.
This gratin with its fennel just cooked enough to enjoy its true taste is not only delicious but also so healthy!

What will the chef come up with next time…

Osteria Porta Porta
420-0839 Shizuoka Shi, Aoi Ku, Takajyo, 2-13-11, Topia Takajyo, 103
Tel./fax: 054-266-7320
Business hours: 11:30~14:00, 17:30^22:00
Closed on Wednesdays
Credit cards OK from July

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
With a Glass,
Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope, Agrigraph, The Agriculture Portal to shizuoka!

Ramen Restaurant: Tsubame in Shimada City

Service:  Busy but friendly and smiling
Equipment & facilities: Very clean overall, excellent washroom
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: superb and generous ramen, gyoza

For all the ramen shops literally brandishing their flags and noren/shop entrance curtains, if not assailing visitors with all kinds of garish photos of their menu placarded outside, some places are so concealed that you wouldn’t find them without an insider’s information!

The full car parking lot is not much of an indication either as the only signs you will see belong to other shops!

Early queues fast forming might be the cue then…
I was lucky that my good friend Aki Suzuki from Yasaitei was on hand, what is with being in an city i still have to learn about…

The entrance is small and does not give much indication as to what is waiting for you inside…

Finally a noren with “Tsubame” written on it hung over an inside door tells you are in the right place! “Tsubame” as the motif suggests means “swallow”! It could become a good joke in English, though!

And a big picture right inside confirms it!

A busy place right from the opening at 6:30 a.m.!

You can either sut at a counter or at a table, although you might not be able to choose if the place is too busy!

Plenty of gentle staff to look after you! Tough work to look after hungry customers from 06:30 to 15:00! Yes, it is not open in the veenings, and that is rare indeed!

A simple but clean place. I did not notice anybody smoking…
The food is served not in cheap plastic bowls, but in real clay bowls!

If you are lucky, you can sit in your own cozy corner! And a lot of customers think so, too!

When you read the menu bear in mind they serve only the red-circled items between 6:30 and 9:00 a.m.! The simple reason is that they are just too busy then!

There is a lot to choose from, including original gyooza, and it certainly deserves a few more visits.
Aki chose a typical ramen dish: “Tsubame Kossari Soba/燕こっさりそば”. It certainly looked delicious. Note that she ordered “Oomori/大盛”, meaning “large size”!

As for me, I asked for “Tsubame Wafuu Tsukemen/燕和風付け麺”, meaning Japanese-style ramen with soup dip.

The ramen (large serving) with their char siu (large serving again!) to be dipped into hot soup before eating.

The hot soup! Very tasty!
I rarely go out to eat ramen, but this definitely a place to go (and again!)

Tsubame/麺屋燕
Shimada Shi, Osakaya Machi, 8770/島田市御坂屋町8770
Tel.: 0547-34-2223
Business hours: AM 6:30~ PM 3:00 (or earlier if stock soup is exhausted)
Closed on Tuesdays and third Wednesday

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope, Agrigraph, The Agriculture Portal to shizuoka!

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

Shizuoka Sake Tasting: Oumuraya Brewery-Jyuube Junmai/Shimada City Gohyakumangoku Rice

Oumuraya Brewery in Shimada City has encouraged local farmers for a long time.
They have been recently brewing sake with sakamai/酒米/sake rice by local farmers.

I’ve just found this bottle called Jyuube/重兵衛 at (Farmers Market) Japan Bazaar in Shimada City.
The rice grown is of the Hyakumangoku variety.
They went as far as decorating the bottle with pictures of the very farmers!
How about that for traceability!

Rice: Hyakumangoku (100%)
Alcohol: 15~16 degrees

Clarity: Very clear
Color: Transparent
Aroma: Strong and fruity: custard, vanilla
Body: Fluid
Taste: Strong and drier than expected attack.
Fruity: Custard, bananas. Junmai petillant.
Disappears quickly with dry almonds.
Light and dry, almost discreet with food.
Dry pineapple appearing later.

Overall: A straightforward sake.
Very pleasant, fruity with a dry note.
Accompanies food well.
Very pleasurable on its own or with food.
A sake for all seasons!

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
——————————–
Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi

—————————————-
日本語のブログ
—————————————-

Shizuoka Agricultural Products: Japan Bazaar Supermarket in Shimada City

Aki Suzuki/鈴木朋 doing her Sunday shopping at Japan Bazaar!

Contrary to other Prefectures, Shizuoka Prefecture does not so much grow in large mass-producing farms but more in a myriad of highly specialized agricultural ventures.
Which means a lot of cooperation needed for marketing.
The good side of it all is that buyers can visit the supermarkets selling the products of so many small farmers in one single place for the pleasure and convenience of all, especially restaurateurs.

Such a place (there are many others of course!) is “Japan Bazaar” in Shimada City!
My good friend, Ms. Aki Suzuki, Chef at my favorite vegetables restaurant Yasaitei, regularly (that is, on Sundays) drives all the way from Shizuoka City to buy her ingredients there. A must destination for her when you realize they retail the products of more than 260 local farmers!

They even sell wooden fence poles and shiitake wood logs!

It is actually located in the middle of a very scenic spot in Shimada City next to immense tea fields and not far from the Oi River.
Now, let me show what they were selling on a Sunday at around lunch time (yesterday):

Flowers in pots.

Cut flowers for ikebana/flower arrangements.

Flowers is actually a major business in our Prefecture and all year round at that!

Leeks!

These little seeds on the left are actually gardenia/kuchinashi/梔子 seeds, mainly used as natural colorant!

Broccoli!

Winter/Spring onions, tender and juicy!

Shiitake mushrooms.

Daikon. I just couldn’t help taking a pic of that strange one!

These are daikon, too!

Great traceability!

Mini tomatoes.

Great eggs from Kikugawa City. Aki would come for them only!

Organic eggs from the same producer!

Shizuoka is strawberry country!

Potatoes.

Amanatsu/甘夏 oranges.

Pampeyu! The largest citrus in the world?

Suruga Elegant oranges.

Kintsuba/sword guard cakes.

Home-made bentos!

More of them!

Shizuoka Prefecture is growing more and more of its own rice!

Great traceability again!

Rice powder/Komeko/米粉, great for wheat allergics!

Home-made soap (not for eating!).

Home-made jams!

Tokoroten/Agar agar jelly and konnyaku jelly!

Shimada beef and pork!

Aki’s basket!

Traceability again: the hens that lay the eggs on sale!

Sake made with sake rice (gohyakumangoku) grown in Shimada City and brewed by Oomuraya Brewery (next article!)

(Farmers Market) Japan Bazaar
427-0111 Shizuoka ken, Shimada Shi, Sakamoto, 4245-3
Tel.: 0547-5505
Fax: 0547-38-5507
Business hours: 09:00~17:30
50-car park
Closed on New Year only

RECOMMENDED RELATED SITES:
Warren Bobrow, Bread + Butter, Zoy Zhang, Hungry Neko, Think Twice, Frank Fariello, Mangantayon, Hapabento, Elinluv Tidbit Corner, Tokyo Terrace, Maison de Christina, Chrys Niles,Lexi, Culinary Musings, Wheeling Gourmet, Comestiblog, Chronicles Of A Curious Cook, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Palate To Pen, Yellin Yakimono Gallery, Tokyo Terrace, Hilah Cooking, More than a Mount Full, Arkonite Bento, Happy Little Bento; 5 Star Foodie; Jefferson’s Table; Oyster Culture; Gourmet Fury; Island Vittles; Good Beer & Country Boys; Rubber Slippers In Italy; Color Food daidokoro/Osaka;/a; The Witchy Kitchen; Citron Et Vanille, Lunsj Med Buffet/Estonian Gastronomy (English), Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Chrisoscope, Agrigraph, The Agriculture Portal to shizuoka!

Please check the new postings at:
sake, shochu and sushi