This Week’s Breakfast: Warming Up With Asa Kayu at Asora no Chaya in Ise

14.November.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. I find it very important time well spent in order to live a happy, fulfilling life.

During a business trip to Ise, I decided to treat myself to some breakfast in the coastal city. I got up nice and early and went to pray at the Toyo’ ukedaijingu of Ise Grand Shrine before making my way to Asora no Chaya to order some of their Asa Kayu (“Morning Porridge”) to warm myself up since I was feeling a little cold.

 

Asora no Chaya is about an 8-minute walk from Ise Stationーwhich by the way is the closest station to the Toyo’ ukedaijingu of Ise Grand Shrineーand just a minute’s stroll from the inner shrine itself.

At the entrance they had “Asa Kayu” written on the door as pictured above. The cafe itself is located on the second floor.

The cafe has wood-based decor, and the windows are nice and big, letting lots of natural light seep in. From the window I could see Ise Grand Shrine which I prayed at just moments ago. It’s a place where you can wind down and relax.

 

I ordered the “Mike no Asa Kayu Awabi” (in Japanese: 御饌の朝かゆ 鮑). I found out that the word mike is used to refer to precious, sacred food. Apparently, your good fortune will increase if you eat it after praying to the god of food at the Toyo’ ukedaijingu.

Mike no Asa Kayu Awabi (御饌の朝かゆ 鮑) – ¥2,040 (Tax Included)

My meal arrived in a wooden box. When I opened it, I was happy to see that I not only received the porridge, but other small plates and bowls of food too.

I was charmed by how shiny the rice was in the sunlight. To eat the thin rice porridge, you add the awabi, pickled vegetables, kombu, bonito broth and other ingredients.

 

The rice porridge is easy to digest and warms you up to the coreーthe perfect way to relax on a cold day. The combination of the tender bonito and the smooth porridge is a match made in heaven. It’s a very simple dish with no unnecessary additions. It has a gentle flavour that makes your mind and body just wind down and relax.

As well as the rice porridge, the meal comes with other healthy foods too like dried fish, soft boiled egg and vinegared ingredients. For dessert, you get zenzai which is a type of sweet soup. This is a very special breakfast you can only experience here at this cafe, coupled with a view of Ise Grand Shrine, all in the early morning.

 

Whenever I wake up early, it feels like I’ll have a very different start to the day than usual, but spending my morning in Ise, praying at Ise Grand Shrine and eating kayu porridge at Asora no Chaya had me holding my head high.

 

This morning, it was the start of another new day, and I began it feeling dignified.

 

 

Today’s Souvenir

Awabi Gohan no Moto – ¥1,300 (Tax Included)

I wanted to share the happiness between friends and family on this fine day where I got to eat a delicious breakfast. This Awabi Gohan no Moto is an easy way to enjoy awabi. You took it together with rice to make awabi rice. Being able to purchase awabi, which is a high quality ingredient, at this price is an absolute steal.

 

Writer: Sayuri Mizuno (MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON)

Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

RECOMMENDED ENTRIES

  • This Week’s Breakfast: French Toast at Bread, Espresso & in Omotesando

    17.September.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. It’s very important time well spent in order to live a happy life.

     

    Today, I went out for breakfast. I got up a little earlier than usual and headed to my favourite cafe, Bread, Espresso & which is located in Omotesando.

    It’s really easy to get to: it’s just a 5-minute walk from the A2 exit of Omotesando Station. Mornings are quiet in Omotesando, you don’t see many people walking around, so it feels like a completely different place compared to its busy streets during the day.

     

    When you enter the cafe, the smell of freshly-baked bread is the first thing to hit your senses. I sat down on one of the comfy sofa-seats and ordered myself the French toast breakfast set.

    There’s plenty of space between tables, so it’s an environment that’s easy to kick back and relax in.

    Inside and outside the cafe are cute signs with that day’s recommended menu items written on them. Next time I visit I think I’ll try one of the lunchtime desserts. That’s what I daydreamed about while waiting for my French toast to arrive.

    French Toast Set w/Drink – ¥800

    The French toast has a subtly sweet scent. It’s made with one of the cafe’s popular foods: the butter-loaded bread known as “Muu.”

     

    The toast’s crusts were nice and crunchy while the middle part was fluffy. The soft bread just melts in your mouth when taking a bite, and your taste buds are treated to the sweet flavour of the egg.

    The toast is delicious as it is, and you can totally leave it at that and enjoy your morning breakfast. But if you want to take it to the next level then you can drizzle the accompanying honey over the toast, giving the sweetness an even richer flavour.

    I’m usually not good with the characteristic sweet taste that honey has, or the bitterness layered into the overall flavour, but this honey was on the milder side so I really enjoyed it.

    After my food, I enjoyed the cappuccino the barista beautifully made for me which comes as part of the set.

     

    My 1-hour morning was spent even more relaxed than usual here. It’s much different from lunchtime which is a much busier and hurried time, so I could sink in my chair and really enjoy my drink too.

     

    Waking up early and enjoying a relaxing breakfast. That’s all I did, but it helped ease my busy mind and soul. I’m a simple person, and I think I’ll be able to face my week and work hard at it after this.

     

     

    Today’s Presents

    Futsu Furu Fig Sandwich – ¥420

    Futsu Uni Fruits – ¥400

    I wanted to share the happiness between friends and family on this fine day where I got to eat a delicious breakfast. These sandwiches are packed full of fruits―seasonal fruits which are best enjoyed right now. If you’re wondering what other sandwiches they sell then be sure to visit.

     

     

    Writer: Sayuri Mizuno (MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON)

    Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

  • This Week’s Lunch: Peach & Yoghurt at dotcom space Tokyo in Harajuku

    29.September.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. It’s very important time well spent in order to live a happy life.

     

    Today, I went and got my lunch early ahead of my morning work. I visited dotcom space Tokyo, a café in Harajuku where you can indulge in a laid-back experience.

    ©️photo Takumi Ota

    The café is just a 4-minute walk from the Takeshita Street exit of Harajuku Station. Its atmosphere is so peaceful and related that you wouldn’t believe it’s right next to noisy and busy Takeshita Street. It’s a spacious place with simple and stylish furniture and furnishings. I fancied something sweet this time, so I went and ordered the Peach & Yoghurt bread.

    ©️photo Takumi Ota

    ©️photo Takumi Ota

    The interior decorating scheme is based on wood; you can feel how particular they were about the furniture. It’s easy to wind down at this café due to its spacious interior. It’s common to see workers scattered throughout too. It’s a nice place to leave your desk for a little bit for lunch for a change of pace.

    Peach & Yoghurt ¥680 / Iced Café Latte ¥550

    The bread is piled with a generous serving of yoghurt cream and shiny peach which the light shines on.

    I feel happy just looking at this delicious treat. Just spellbinding!

    I sliced my first piece and popped it into my mouth. The bread is deliciously chewy, and the refreshing yogurt cream and sweet peach filled my mouth. The bread itself is a thick-cut slice and made by Pelican, a bakery in Asakusa. It has a chewy and moist texture you can’t find anywhere else.

     

    The yogurt cream isn’t overly sweet, instead having a more refreshing flavour to it. When eaten together with the sweet ripened peach, the gorgeous mix blends together around your taste buds and melts in your mouth. Depending on the season, you can pick fruits other than peach too. They always have seasonal choices. I’m looking forward to their autumn and winter line-up.

    The iced latte has a slight acidity to it, my favourite kind of flavour. It went really well with the Peach & Yogurt bread. The café is also particular about its coffee bean selection; one of its baristas is noted to be a past “Japan champion” when it comes to coffee. I’ve got to try the hot coffee the next time I visit.

     

    A set meal, burger or the likes would have been good too, but I had my eyes set on a sweet dessert lunch. Getting a moment to chill out and enjoy something sweet made me happy today. I recommend enjoying some autumn fruit-topped bread too as the seasons change.

     

    Today’s Presents

    Apple Juice ¥450

    I’s important to share the happiness between family and colleagues on when you get the chance to enjoy something tasty. I bought them some apple juice, which is poured into a cup with a smiling face on the side. It’s made from 100% apples from Nagano. The straw is made from environmentally-friendly sugarcane.

     

     

    Writer:Sayuri Mizuno(MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON)

  • This Week’s Dessert: Savouring Autumntime Matcha Sweets at ATELIER de GODIVA in Ikebukuro

    16.October.2019 | FEATURES / FOOD

    One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. It’s very important time well spent to ensure happiness.

    I’ve been working relatively hard as of late. I had some spare time before a business meeting, so I took advantage of the occasion to treat myself to some desserts. My destination: ATELIER de GODIVA located inside Seibu Ikebukuro.

    GODIVA has numerous stores throughout Tokyo, but Ikebukuro’s concept store branch has an eat-in space that’s perfect for that tea or coffee break.

     

    ATELIER de GODIVA boasts that same level of quality when it comes to their desserts, some of which are exclusive to this branch. There are only three branches: this one in Seibu Ikebukuro (Tokyo), another in Daimaru Kyoto (Kyoto), and the last in Hakata Hankyu (Fukuoka). The cake I am showing you today is a special dessert sold only in these three branches (and is takeout only at Hakata Hankyu).

     

    The first delight I ordered was the Mousse Matcha Cherry.

    Mousse Matcha Cherry: Eat in ¥980 / Takeout ¥780 (*Matcha Ice Cream is eat-in only)

    Available: Until November 26, 2019 while supplies last

    The shiny cake is served on a round white plate with a dollop of matcha ice cream. The pink berry sauce is drizzled around the plate to make the plating even cuter.

    Time to tuck in. This extravagant cake is supported by a fluffy matcha mousse topped with a crunchy chocolate sable. On top of that still are juicy cherries, adding a hint of freshness to the cake. The matcha glaze on the mousse has just the right amount of bitterness, which when coupled with the subtly sweet matcha mousse makes for a heavenly balance of flavours. Lined around the base of the mousse are sweet and sour dried raspberries which elevated the matcha-ness of the matcha mousse.

    The matcha ice cream which it comes with when you order to eat in is rich and creamy.

    I was full up after my dessert, but since I’d taken the time to come here I wanted to order a drink too… so I got a takeout Chocolixir Uji Matcha Kiwami from a shop adjoining ATELIER de GODIVA.

    Chocolixir Uji Matcha Kiwami – ¥602 (*Takeout only at the GODIVA Seibu Ikebukuro branch)

    This new drink is part of GODIVA’s chocolate and tea pairing series. The chefs at GODIVA have carefully selected the best varieties of tea to combine with chocolate. This one is an iced drink made with white chocolate and matcha.

    It’s a mix of GODIVA’s popular smooth and sweet white chocolate and rich Uji matcha. It’s crowned with a sprinkling of bitter Uji matcha powder. All of the flavours are highlighted in this sweet drink. The crunchy white chocolate pieces you sip up as you drink are delicious. It’s the kind of drink where you’re sure to find something new each time you take a drink.

     

    My 30-minute tea break is my little self-indulgence for the day. Spare minutes in my daily schedule affords me the chance to go and enjoy some delicious desserts. You should treat yourself to some special autumntime sweets too.

     

    Today’s Presents

    Matcha Adzuki ATELIER Tablet – ¥800

    It’s important to share the happiness between family and colleagues on when you get the chance to enjoy something tasty. The present I bought today was a tablet chocolate handmade in the shop. The matcha white chocolate has almonds in it as well as Japanese-style chocolate mixed with adzuki. It has a strong matcha flavour and isn’t overly-sweet. You can also request for a ribbon to be tied around it for gift-giving. It’s a chocolate that’s sure to bring anyone joy.

     

    Writer:Sayuri Mizuno(MOSHI MOSHI NIPPON)

    Translator: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

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  • Stock Your Kitchen With Japanese Kitchenware Tools by SALON adam et rope’

    21.May.2020 | FOOD

    SALON adam et rope’ has launched its new “Nihon no Daidokoro Dougu” (Japanese Kitchen Tools) collection which features a curated selection of Made In Japan kitchenware and cookware items from high quality Japanese brands.

     

    Kasane

    Top: ¥12,000 / Middle: ¥12,000 / Bottom: ¥9,000 (Before Tax)

    Traditionally, Japanese knives were made by men with men in mind, but these Kasane knives are made by women to fit with the modern age. They are made in such a way to feel comfortable in smaller hands. The handles are made from rare natural wood from the cerasus jamasakura trees of Gifu Prefecture which give them a texture that changes as you continue to use the knives. The blades themselves are made from high-carbon stainless steel which gives them superior sharpness and durability. The blade edge is the result of a new technology developed by Sumikama called “Zero Edge” which makes them thin and sharp.

     

    Kaji Donya

     
    Left: ¥1,300 / Middle: ¥2,000 / Right: ¥2,800 (Before Tax)

    Left: ¥1,000 / Middle: ¥1,200 / Right: ¥2,000 (Before Tax)

    These handy stackable containers are made by Kaji Donya, a company based in Tsubame, Niigata. The height of each one is the same which makes them super convenient when stacking inside fridges.

    Ceramic Grill: ¥1,400 (Before Tax)

    The ceramic grill is a longtime seller at SALON. If you’re grilling bread on it, it leaves the outside crispy and the inside nice and soft. It uses far-infrared rays which means the water content of the ingredients grilled on it is not lost, allowing for the full tasty flavour to stay locked in and the food plump and juicy.

  • Father’s Day: Otokomae Tofu Celebrates Dad’s Around the World With New Tofu Product

    13.May.2020 | FOOD

    Japanese tofu company Otokomae Tofu is celebrating Father’s Day this year by releasing its new “Chichi no Hi Tofu” (Father’s Day Tofu) at supermarkets around Japan for a limited time between June 15 and June 21.

    When you pour soy sauce over the Father’s Day Tofu, a message of gratitude appears on the tofu’s surface in Japanese. This is a unique, one-of-a-kind tofu experience. There are four messages in total which translate to: “Manly,” “Thanks always, dad. I love you, live a long life,” “You work so hard papa, I love you,” and “Dad.”

    Giving your dad some Father’s Day Tofu is sure to make for a Father’s Day to remember!

  • McDonald’s Japan: Chicken Tatsuta Mentai Cheese & Other Japanese Flavoured Foods Coming to the Menu

    09.May.2020 | FOOD

    McDonald’s Japan is introducing some mouth-watering new foods to its menu including two which incorporates chicken tatsuta: the “Chicken Tatsuta Mentai Cheese” which is made with walleye pollack roe, and the bite-sized “Hitokuchi Tatsuta”ーthe latter of which is arriving to the side menu.

    It is also introducing the “Rice Chicken Tatsuta” burger following the success of the “Rice Burger” which was released at stores for the first time earlier back in February of this year.

     

    These new menu items will be released on May 13, 2020 at all McDonald’s branches in Japan for a limited time.

    Chicken Tatsuta Mentai Cheese

    Chicken tatsuta is a popular Japanese dish which combines a soft, soy ginger-soaked chicken patty with spicy sauce and stuffs it inside a bun. McDonald’s new “Chicken Tatsuta Mentai Cheese” adds spicy walleye pollack roe mayo and smooth white cheddar cheese to the equation. It will be available all day round, including for the morning menu.

    Hitokuchi Tatsuta

    Rice Chicken Tatsuta

    The “Rice Chicken Burger” will be available in the evenings only.

    Japanese actor Toshiyuki Nishida is appearing in the TV commercials to promote the “Hitokuchi Tatsuta” while comedian Nobuyuki Hanawa and actor Katsumi Takahashi appear in the “Rice Chicken Tatsuta” commercials which feature a re-recording of the song SWEET MEMORIES ~Amai Kioku~ by Seiko Matsuda.

  • Popular Yakiniku Restaurant Futago to Open New Branch at THE JUNEI HOTEL in Kyoto

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    FTG Company, which operates 74 restaurants inside and outside Japan, is set to open its new restaurant Nikukappou Futago at THE JUNEI HOTEL Kyoto in Higashiyama, Kyoto on March 27, 2020 where it will serve authentic Japanese wagyu beef and full courses.

     

    THE JUNEI HOTEL Kyoto is a small luxury tourist hotel housing eleven rooms in total, including its Bamboo Suite. Bamboo can be found throughout all the rooms as part of the hotel’s concept: “A sojourn embraced by bamboo in a moonlit space.” The rooms, as well as the hotel interior overall, showcases beautiful traditional handiwork using bamboo.

    Inside Nikukappou Futago

    Nikukappou Futago fuses traditional Japanese elements with modern ones. It features half-size eating areas as well as private areas. Customers can expect their private dining experience to include freshly-cooked full courses with high quality Japanese wagyu and seasonal ingredients.

    Menu in Japanese *Menu will change monthly

    Nikukappou Futago’s concept is “A relaxed adult’s Iki.” The word iki here refers to a range of different meanings in Japanese, like “sophistication,” “breath,” “spirit,” and “life.” The restaurant will work to serve a hospitable service that enables each and every person to enjoy that iki that lives inside them.

    Foie Gras & Wagyu Filet Mouthful Bowl

    Wagyu Loin & Kyoto Vegetable Shabu-shabu

    The course is made with seasonal ingredients and vegetables. Plus, in using a range of cooking methods, the original flavour meat of the meat is intensified.

    Wagyu Sirloin Sumiyaki

    Enjoy a selection of high-quality rare wagyu cuts like sirloin, filet, loin, and more. You can also enjoy a selection of classic Japanese dishes like yakiniku, shabu-shabu, and sukiyaki, all in one course.

    Like the changing seasons in Kyoto, the menu will be altered every month to bring something new. Discover your iki and enjoy a great meal at Nikukappou Futago.

  • Winners Announced For The 7th Washoku World Challenge Competition

    03.March.2020 | FOOD

    The final round for the 7th Washoku World Challenge Competition was held in Tokyo on February 20 and 21, which saw WANG Wei Ping of China, and chef at SUN with AQUA JAPANESE DINING SUNTORY, as the winner.

     

    The two-day event brought together five chefs from Hong Kong, Singapore, Paris, Donostia-San Sebastian, and New York come together to compete and show their skills create dishes based on the competition’s main theme of “Umami” and this year’s theme of “Texture and Mouthfeel.”

    The judges said: “This 7th edition demonstrates that the finalists’ technical level keeps improving every year. Creating Japanese dishes that incorporate the characteristics and unique ideas of other countries’ culinary cultures, while respecting the fundamentals of Japanese cuisine built on the concept of umami, expands the potential of Japanese cuisine. The creations of each one of the finalists embodied this notion.”

    Middle Contender: WANG Wei Ping, 1st Place Winner

    WANG Wei Ping’s Dish

    On the first day, the chefs used the same ingredients to create a “nimonowan.” On the second day, they forged their own original dishes using five or more ingredients which they arranged on a Japanese “hangetsubon” tray.

     

    When reacting to his victory, Wang Wei Ping said: “I thank the owner and other members of my restaurant. After returning to Shanghai, I would like to continue conveying the excellence of Japanese cuisine, which is both healthy and tasty.”

     

    Finalists

    Hong Kong

    First Place: WANG Wei Ping (China, SUN with AQUA JAPANESE DINING SUNTORY)

     

    USA

    Second Place: Yael PEET (USA, Fury’s) *The restaurant will be open this summer.

     

    Singapore

    Third Place: Loh Man HONG (Singapore, FAT COW)

     

    Paris

    Wojciech POPOW (Poland, Beaverbrook)

     

    Judges

    – Head Judge: Mr. Yoshihiro MURATA

    (Chairman of Japanese Culinary Academy, Owner and chef of Kikunoi, Japanese Cuisine Goodwill ambassador)

    – Deputy Head Judge: Mr. Masahiro NAKATA

    (Director of Taiwa Gakuen Education Inc. President of Kyoto Culinary Art College)
    – Judge: Mr. Hideaki MATSUO

    (Owner of Japanese Cuisine KASHIWAYA, Japanese Cuisine Goodwill ambassador)
    – Special Judge: Yoshio KOJIMA

    (Comedian)

  • Fermented Food Cafe ‘Tsuke x Koji Haccomachi’ to Open in Kyoto’s Sanjo Area

    19.February.2020 | FOOD

    Tsuke x Koji Haccomachi is a new cafe opening in the Sanjo area of Kyoto on February 22, 2020, that is centred entirely on fermented foods.

    The name “Haccomachi” derives from the Japanese word Hakko (Hacco), meaning fermented, and Komachi (Comachi), meaning a beautiful woman. The cafe hopes for people to incorporate fermented foods into their livesーsomething which is rooted in Japanese food cultureーand live comfortably.

    The cafe’s logo showcases the making of kōjiーa type of mould used in the fermentation process of certain food products in Japan, like soybeans. The logo hope to pass down this long upheld tradition.

     

    Hakko fermentation is a major part of Japan’s food culture. Since ancient times, the sweetness and umami brought about by the enzymes in the fermentation process have served to accompany many foods in the country, such as miso, soy sauce, mirin, rice vinegar, and so onーall traditional condiments used in the Japanese kitchen that are still fundamental today.

     

    The menu at Tsuke x Koji Haccomachi features a line-up of fermented foods made in Kyoto, including those from Kyoto-based soybean makers Fujiwara Shokuhin, Sawai Shoyu Honten which has produced the same high quality soy sauce for decades, sake brewery Kitagawa Honke which has been around since the Edo Period, and more.

     

    A Small Look at the Menu

    Lunch Menu

    Haccomachi Special – Fermented Lunch Plate: ¥1,690

    This lunch plate is an assortment of hors d’oeuvre made with fermented condiments, tandoori chicken that has been pickled to elevate the umami, marlin fish, soup, and more.

     

    Dinner Menu

    Spare Ribs On The Bone in Miso Yuan Yaki: ¥1,490

    This hearty portion of spare ribs are marinated in a miso, mirin, and soy sauce mix. Taste the full umami flavour of the juicy meat.

    Namerō Miso Salmon in Yoghurt Sauce: ¥770

    The salmon is served namerō style, a type of tataki or pounding method, in miso. The yoghurt has both a refreshing and rich flavour.

    Homemade Komekoji Rice Malt Sweet Sake Yoghurt: ¥470

    The splitting of the sour yoghurt serves to elevate the sweetness of the sake. This is a drink that even those who don’t like sweet sake are sure to enjoy.

     

    Cafe Menu

    Miso Pound Cake w/ Vanilla Ice Cream: ¥550

    The miso pound cake is a collaboration with Japanese confectionery company Sarasa, which has 6 branches of cafes and shops in Kyoto. It’s made using komekoji rice malt powder provided by an old-fashioned Japanese shop (菱六もやし). The umami of the miso is intensified, and the cake stays moist thanks to the powder. It’s served with a dollop of refreshing vanilla ice cream.

    Blackcurrant & Vanilla Sweet Sake Affogato: ¥550

    A unique spin on the affogato dessert which has you pouring hot sweet sake over tangy and refreshing blackcurrant sherbet and rich vanilla ice cream. Enjoy the mix of the hot sake and the cool ice cream.

     

    Discover the Japanese tradition of fermentation at Tsuke x Koji Haccomachi, opening February 22, 2020.

  • This Week’s Dessert: Indulging in a Seasonal Parfait at Kinoshita Chaen in Ise

    18.February.2020 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    One thing I do at least once a week without fail is treat myself out to some delicious food or dessert. I find it very important time well spent in order to live a happy, fulfilling life.

     

    This week, a business trip took me out of Tokyo to the city of Ise in Mie Prefecture. When the trip was over, I had some spare time to kill before my train arrived, so I went inside a cafe called Kinoshita Chaen which is close to Ise Grand Shrine.

    You can arrive at Kinoshita Chaen in just three minutes on foot is walking from Ise Grand Shrine, or five mintues from Ise Station. The exterior design of the building takes on a Western style, which I found to be both cute and retro. You can feel the warm and welcoming atmosphere of the cafe as soon as you step inside. The decor is decked out with all things wooden.

    The cafe has been around since the Meiji Period. It serves drinks and desserts all made using tea, and offers both eat-in and takeout services.

     

    I ordered their seasonal-exclusive parfait. 90% of the people in there were ordering it, so I thought it must be popular!

    Strawberry & Parfait Puree Parfait w/ Japanese Black Tea – ¥1,300 (Tax Included)

    This super cute parfait is completely stuffed to the top with strawberries♡

    You can snap cute photos of it no matter the angle♡

    When I spooned the caramel puree, soft custard reveal itself. You get a delicious pairing of the bitter flavour and crunchy texture of the caramel with the subtly sweet custard.

     

    The next ingredient to show itself was the mascarpone cream, which combines with the rest of the flavours perfectly. Once your mouth is satisfied with the sweetness of the flavour combinations, you’re next met with Ise matcha gelato.

    The matcha gelato is a great palate cleanser for the sweet ingredients when eaten on its own. When eaten together with the sweet puree, you get a completely different kind of delicious flavour. I recommend trying it together with the puree, mascarpone cream, and the crunchy pie which is the next layer.

     

    Moving on from the sweetness and bitterness, the next layer is fresh strawberry sherbet, which is a combination of sweet and sour. To finish, you’re brought back to the subtle sweetness once more with white chocolate mousse, strawberries, and mixed berry jelly.

     

    The final bites of a parfait can generally be hard to get down because you grow tired of the flavour, but the ones sold at Kinoshita Chaen are on another level. The various flavours and textures mean you won’t grow tired as you spoon through the many layersーyou’ll find yourself savouring every last bite.

    The Japanese black tea that came with it was luxurious. The cafe actually caters the type of tea they serve to each seasonal parfait. Enjoy a cup together with your parfait.

    Matcha Soy Flour Dumpling Cream – ¥830

    I didn’t get to order them this time, but I’m really taken by the matcha soy flour shiratama dumplings… The dumplings are made in-house and are topped with brown sugar syrup from Okinawa and Ise matcha. The bitterness of the matcha together with the rich sugar syrup is sure to be delicious with some chewy dumplings. I’ll definitely be trying them when I next visit.

     

    I cannot recommend a trip to Kinoshita Chaen enough. Offering an exemplary menu of Ise flavours, their drinks and sweets maintain the culture and tradition of Japanese tea while keeping up to date with current trends in the world of sweets.

     

     

    Today’s Souvenir

    Houjicha Teabags – ¥400 (1 Pack) 

    On the days you get to eat delicious sweets, you’ve got to share the happiness with friends and family. I bought some houjicha tea bags made with tea leaves grown in Mie Prefecture. They have various other teas too, and the packaging is really cute, so they’re perfect as gifts for friends and family.

  • Matcha Croissants & Other Breakfast Delights at CHAVATY in Omotesando

    30.January.2020 | FOOD

    If you’re looking for a very special breakfast in the Harajuku/Omotesando area during your trip to Tokyo, then we recommend grabbing a bite to eat at CHAVATY with their new breakfast service.

     

    CHAVATY is a cafe specialising in tea lattes made using high quality tea leaves. The cafe is announcing a special new breakfast called “CHAVATY Morning” which will begin on Sunday February 16 and will subsequently take place on the third Sunday of every month. You must make a reservation in advance, but what you get is indeed a treat sure to delight your eyes and belly, from teas to croissants, scones, granola, and more.

     

    Wake up and smell the coffee, or in this case the tea, with a choice of either uva straight tea or your choice of a tea latte. While sipping on that, you can enjoy a salad, two scones, and the main of this particular breakfast line-up: the matcha croissaint. There’s also homemade granola with yogurt. All of this for just ¥1,180 (before tax) so you can start your morning right.

    The homemade matcha croissants are baked fresh to order, so you can enjoy them nice and hot. Top them and fill them with the accompanying matcha cream for a luxurious CHAVATY-esque morning matcha explosion.

    The granola is also homemade, and served with plenty of acacia honey. The yogurt is made from 100% raw milk, so you get a mix of that refreshing taste of the milk, the richness of the honey, and the sweetness of the granola. You also get a combination of textures too, from the crunch of the granola to the smooth, fresh cream-like yogurt. A perfectly balanced breakfast for your morning.

    Tea Scone Sablés (Uva/Houjicha/Matcha) – ¥280 Each (Before Tax)

    You can also much down on one of the three homemade tea scone sablés, which come in uva, houjicha, and matcha flavours. Perfect with a cup of tea made from CHAVATY’s high quality tea leaves.

     

    Looking for the perfect Harajuku/Omotesando morning? Then head to CHAVATY.

  • 8 Delicious Breakfasts to Enjoy in Tokyo’s Traditional District Asakusa

    08.January.2020 | FEATURES / FOOD / SPOT

    Asakusa is one of the most touristic spots in Tokyo and enjoys its traditional temples as much as its modern scene. If you’re up early with a day of sightseeing and shopping ahead, starting your day with a good breakfast is the best way to make the most of it. To help out, we’ve got a list of eight recommendations for breakfast in Asakusa which includes both Japanese and western-style foods – bon appetit!

    Byuree @by_byu

    Pelican Cafe 

    Pelican Cafe runs the old bakery called Pan no Pelican which was established in 1942. This delicious menu is not available anywhere else. The scrumptious breakfast menu includes five different meals to choose from. The picture above shows the Ham Katsu Sandwich – a filling breakfast sandwich containing a thick slice of Asakusa ham.

     

    Pelican Cafe 

    Address: Floor 1, 3-9-11, Kotobuki, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 

    Breakfast: 9:00 – 11:00

    Regular Menu: 11:00- 17:00 (Last Orders)

    Closed: Sundays, National Holidays

    Closed for summer holidays and the New Year’s Period

    Official Website: https://pelicancafe.jp/index.html

     

    みきみき @miki_log

    February café

    We’ve previously visited February café for their scrumptious french toast and now we’re back for seconds. You can order the breakfast bread set (Asa Pan Set) from 8:10 am to 11:00 am. The bread used for the set is actually Pelican no Pan bread. This is ideal for those of you who want to enjoy breakfast near Kappabashi.

     

    February café

    Address:1-7-8 Kaminarimon, Taito, Tokyo 

    Opening Hours: 8:10-19:00 (Last Orders: 18:30)

    No Regular Holidays

    Official Website: http://www016.upp.so-net.ne.jp/February-Cafe/

     

    伊藤 @itoufds

    Coffee Lodge Akaishi

    Coffee Lodge Akaishi is located behind Asakusa Kannon and is open from 9:00 am to 4:00 am. This place is loved by everybody from tourists to locals. Their top dish is their Ebi Sando – a sandwich that contains battered shrimp, tartar sauce, cabbage and sauce. The old traditional-style interior provides the perfect relaxing atmosphere to catch your breath between sightseeing and shopping. 

     

    Coffee Lodge Akaishi

    Address: 3-8-4 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 

    Tuesday to Saturday: 09:00 – 04:00/ Sundays and National Holidays: 09:00 – 01:00

    Closed: Mondays

    Tabelog: https://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1311/A131102/13058004/

     

    CHANUNCHIDA.C チダー @chida.c

    Misojyu

    Misojyu’s popular breakfast set includes miso soup, one onigiri, a delicious half-boiled egg, and pickled vegetables. Misojyu is committed to using organic vegetables in their miso soups for healthy and balanced meals so this is the perfect way to start your day. 

     

    Misojyu (Miso Soup Shop)

    Address: 1-7-5 Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 

    Breakfast: 8:30 – 10:00

    Regular Menu: 10:00 – 19:00

    No Regular Holidays

    Official Website: https://misojyu.jp/

     

    SUKE6 DINER

    SUKE6 DINER serves up delicious brunches from the morning and homemade sausages and smoked fish dishes in the evening. The breakfast menu is available from 8:00 am to 11:00 am and serves up homemade granola and bread freshly baked on the third floor of the diner. You can also enjoy their scrumptious sandwiches which are topped with meat and vegetables.

     

    SUKE6 DINER

    Address: Ayumi Building Floor 1-2, 1-11-1, Hanakawado, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 

    Tuesday – Friday: 8:00-22:00

    Lunch:10:00 – 17:00

    Weekends and National Holidays: 8:00 – 21:00

    Closed: Mondays

    Official Website: http://suke6diner.com/

     

    Akko @gingerzaru

    SaboAsaichi

    If you’re near Inarichō then pop into Sabö Asaichi for a delicious breakfast, shokupan or Okara bread that is made from bean curd lees. Toppings include red bean paste and butter, honey and butter and red bean paste and cream cheese. Besides bread, you can also add an onigiri and miso soup to your meal so you can enjoy both a western-style and Japanese-style breakfast in one go.

     

    SaboAsaichi

    Address: 6-1-15, Higashiueno, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 8:00 – 20:00 

    Closed: Sundays and Mondays

    Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/saboasaichi

     

    さっちゃん @sachi.coffee1015

    SUKEMASA COFFEE

    If you’re looking for a good latte or espresso to start your day then SUKEMASA COFFEE got your back. A unique feature of the café is that the staff are all dressed in kimonos. The picture above shows the café’s Red Bean Paste and Butter Dog. A rich filling of red bean paste and butter is sandwiched inside crispy bread.

     

    SUKEMASA COFFEE

    Address: Kimizuka Bldg. 102, 2-29-2, Asakusa, Taito, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 8:00 – 19:00

    Closed: Tuesdays

    Official Website: https://sukemasa.tokyo/

     

    アッキントッシュ @diamante_aki

    MIMOSA

    MIMOSA’s morning menu sees toast, sandwiches and the best of Asakusa’s delicious breakfasts. The star of the show is the Big Hotcake (¥720 After Tax) which is a five-layer pancake topped with Calpis butter and a side of whipped cream. You’ll want to savour the nostalgic flavour forever. If you cannot finish your meal, you can take it away with you.

     

    MIMOSA

    Address: 4-28-6 Asakusa, Taito City, Tokyo

    Opening Hours: 8:00 – 17:00

    Closed: Mondays

    Tabelog: https://tabelog.com/tokyo/A1311/A131102/13088749/

     

     If you’re an early bird in Asakusa, treat yourself to a hearty western or Japanese breakfast at one of these cafés and you’ll be sure to have a fantastic day. 

     

    *The cafés and restaurants may update their opening hours and menus at any time so please check their official websites and social media for the most accurate information.

  • 7 Ways to Start Your Morning with Delicious Food in Fukuoka

    02.January.2020 | FEATURES / FOOD

    Our website has loads of information on delicious desserts and food to try in Fukuoka. Today we’ll be looking at the best places to try a traditional “Morning” according to expert Instagrammer moe“Morning” is a typical breakfast enjoyed by the Japanese and is a great way to start the day. moe has been travelling from head to toe of Fukuoka, taste-testing different breakfasts and photographing them. Here are the findings. 

     

    Full Full Kaze no Mori, Kashii-Kaenmae

    Croque Madame Set and French Toast Set

    Full Full recently opened at Kashii-Kaenmae. The Croque Madame Set or the French Toast Set is the perfect way to start your day. For the croque madame, their delicious bread made from special whole wheat flour is topped with tomatoes, bacon, white sauce and a sunny-side-up egg. The french toast is made from the same round bread used to make their popular Mentai France which is a baguette topped with creamy fish roe. The fluffy bread is topped with a crispy sweet sugar coating that is scorched like a crème brûlée.

     

    ▼Full Full Kaze no Mori

    Opening Hours: 8:00-18:00 (Café Last Orders)
    Closed: Tuesdays
    Address: 7 Chome-4-2 Kasumigaoka, Higashi Ward, Fukuoka

    Official Website: https://www.full-full.jp/

     

    BAKERY TATSUYA, Minami

    Simple yet stylish, BAKERY TATSUYA is white on the interior and exterior. There is space to eat-in so it is possible to enjoy your freshly baked goods upon purchase. There is so much variety that you will be spoilt for choice.

     

    ▼BAKERY TATSUYA

    Opening Hours: 9:00-17:00
    Closed: Mondays, every first and third Tuesday of the month.

    Address: 2 Chome-45-29 Hanahata, Minami Ward, Fukuoka

    Official Website: https://www.facebook.com/BakeryTatsuya

     

    amam dacotan, Ropponmatsu

    Fig Fruit Sandwich and Salted Milk Gelato Croissant 

    amam dacotan’s crusty bread is so delicious that it appeared on TV. The shop is packed with different varieties of bread. Alongside the takeout menu there is also an eat-in-limited menu. The Salted Milk Gelato Croissant is an exquisite balance of sweetness and saltiness that you just have to try.

     

    ▼amam dacotan

    Opening Hours: 10:00-19:00 (Sales end once stock is depleted)

    Closed: Wednesdays
    Address: 3-chōme-7-6 RopponmatsuChūō-ku, Fukuoka

    Website: https://www.instagram.com/amam_dacotan/

     

    Siro coffee, Josei

    Red Bean Jam and Butter Sandwich with a Japanese Tea Latte

    The simple and stylish interior of Siro Coffee has earned its Instagram fame. Treat yourself to a warm red bean paste and butter sandwich to enjoy the sweetness of the paste as it fuses with the saltiness of the butter. Everything is packed into a neat and beautiful small bun. The rich Japanese tea latte is the perfect way to finish off a refreshing meal. 

     

    ▼Siro coffee

    Opening Hours: 12:00-19:00
    Closed: Wednesdays and the first and third Tuesday of the month.
    Address: 2-12-16 Josei, Sawara Ward, Fukuoka
    Official Website: https://www.instagram.com/siro_coffee/

     

    Shirogane Sabo, Hirao

    Platinum Salad Morning

    Shirogane Sabo’s classic pancakes can be simply enjoyed as they are for a buttery flavour or enhanced as you please by adding maple syrup or honey. The Platinum Salad Morning comes with juice, the platinum salad, classic pancakes and coffee. Shirogane Sabo can get quite crowded so it is best to reserve a time slot if you are set on going.

     

    ▼Shirogane Sabo
    Opening Hours:

    Weekdays: 10:00-22:00(Last Orders: 21:00)

    Weekends and National Holidays: 8:00-22:00(Last Orders 21:00)
    Address: 1 Chome-11-7 Shirogane, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka

    No closing days.
    Website: http://s-sabo.com/

     

    Bread, Espresso & Hakata &, Fukuoka Ekimae

    Teppan French Toast

    Mu-Mentai

    A Bread, Espresso & Hakata & opened in Hakata. This branch serves the Fukuoka-limited Mu-Mentai where you can enjoy a heap of creamy fish roe covered in butter and cream. The bread and sandwiches start to sell out past lunchtime so make sure you get there early if you are interested. 

     

    ▼Bread, Espresso & Hakata &

    Opening Hours:8:00-20:00
    No Regular Holidays
    Address: 2-8-12 Hakataekimae, 1F, Hakata, Fukuoka
    Website: https://www.instagram.com/bread.espresso.and.hakata/

     

    Blue Jam, Sawara

    Croissant d’Amande Choco Banana 

    Blue Jam uses carefully-selected natural ingredients in their bread and pastries. The luxurious Croissant d’Amande Choco Banana is a three-in-one almond, banana and chocolate croissant. The melon pan here is also delicious.

     

    ▼Blue Jam

    Opening Hours:8:00-18:00 (Last Orders: 17:30)
    Closed: Sundays
    Address: 3-1-41 Tamura, Sawara Ward, Fukuoka
    Official Website: http://www.bluejam-fukuoka.com/

     

     So, what do you think? moe’s Instagram is full of the most delicious lunches you have ever seen. If you’re struggling on where to go for breakfast in Fukuoka, let moe’s Instagram be your guide. 

    Original Article Information and Photos by:  moe

  • Akasaka Yuuga: The New Japanese Restaurant in Tokyo’s Gourmet Warzone Akasaka

    13.December.2019 | FOOD

    Akasaka is known as a warzone when it comes to gourmet restaurants, but a new contender has arrived. Akasaka Yuuga opened this month in Akasaka Ni-chome, Tokyo. This restaurant serves Japanese style cuisine featuring carefully selected flavours taken from across the country.

    Yuuga gets most of their fish from Choshi Port, which boasts the best fish yield in Japan, as well as other carefully chosen seafood from across Japan in addition to seasonal vegetables. They bring out the full flavour of their ingredients, all of which are matched to the current season. They even serve Japanese black beef.

    Their concept centres on how recognised and loved Japanese food is internationally. The restaurant makes full use of Japan’s traditional food culture and prepares food using a variety of cooking methods. Everything in the restaurant is carefully considered to ensure diners enjoy their meal experience with all five senses, from not only the food but the decor and hospitality too. There are also counter seats available for customers who want to watch their food being prepared while they talk, whether to their friends or with the skilled chefs, offering an unforgettable dining experience for Japanese people and foreigners alike. There are also private eating booths for those who want to eat with friends, family, or celebrate a special day.

     

    Nijushisekki

    Nijushisekki refers to the days that divide the solar year into twenty four equal sections and highlight the longest days of sun in summer, the shortest days in winter, and the days being the same in spring and autumn.

    The dishes at the restaurant reflect these regular changes; the dishes are not bound strictly by Japanese cuisine, but make use of various cooking and preparation methods, with thought and consideration put into every dish.

     

    Japanese Black Beef

    Yuuga prides itself not only on seasonal vegetable and fish-filled menu, which is both a feast for the belly and eyes, but on the beef used in its course meals too.

    Yuuga serves Japanese black beef which comes from a rare breed of cow which is difficult to rear. It has a distinct rich flavour and low melting point which gives it a melt-in-the-mouth texture.

     

    Courses

    There are three courses to choose from that cater to customers desires, costing ¥8,000, ¥12,000, and ¥20,000 respectively. This includes appetisers, and customers can choose from a range of wines from around the world select by sommeliers, as well as champagne, whisky, and of course sake and shochu.

  • Orders Now Open For Japan’s Ultimate Mochi Brand ‘THE OMOCHI’

    11.November.2019 | FOOD

    dot science launched a new brand on Wednesday called ‘THE OMOCHI.’ Together with the brand’s partner Kasaharamochiーa Miyazaki-based mochi making companyーthey are aiming to update one of Japan’s most recognised traditional confections: mochi.

     

    Kasaharamochi make their mochi using an old-fashioned method that is almost extinct which makes use of a kamado BBQ and firewood. They shoot towards making the ultimate mochi.

    In the video below, one of the staff members at Kasaharamochi discusses the cooking techniqueーthe oldest method, but the one that creates the most delicious mochi around.

    Ingredients are carefully selected and placed carefully into the fire to steam. Kasaharamochi has continuously sought this ancient technique to cook the perfect mochi, a flavour which has been eaten by emperors and the imperial family during celebrations. This mochi has now been dubbed THE OMOCHI.

     

    For the first line-up of the THE OMOCHI brand there will be 5 different types of mochi.

    Pickled Egg Yolk & Soy Sauce

    Cinnamon Honey Bar Mochi

    THE OMOCHI website is also showcasing how best to eat and enjoy mochi as well as what is possible with this sweet treat. The website offers wine pairings, what to eat mochi with, original recipes and more, so be sure to check out the website.

     

    THE OMOCHI Original Recipes: https://theomochi.com/#recipe

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