Tag Archives: 日本

Sushi Set in a Shizuoka City Supermarket!

There is this kind of quaint rivalry between Tokyo and the rest of Japan when it comes to gastronomy, a situation which is fueled by some famous/notorious guides of international repute/disrepute for obvious financial reasons.
How many times was I told almost brutally by other expats living the grand life of Tokyo that nothing compares with the metropolis when it comes to gastronomy…
Admittedly some regions of Japan are grudgingly granted some kind of recognition, i.e. Kyoto, Hokkaido, etc. under the leadership of the media cited above, but for the rest….
The case of Shizuoka is particularly acute. Tokyo expats (not all, mind ou!) go as far as considering Izu Peninsula and Mount Fuji as their own back gardens!
The situation is purposefully exacerbated by most famous restaurants in the Capital who certainly do not wish people at large to know too much about Shizuoka Prefecture for the simple reason that many of them wouldn’t exist without the myriads of vegetables, meat and fish varieties produced here.
Just visit a supermarket in Shizuoka City and you will understand my meaning! Actually, I stopped completely eating in Tokyo! My money is better spent looking for the hidden treasures of faraway Prefectures.
Enough complaining, and just allow me to show you an example to illustrate this topic:
As the Missus was working today I was responsible for the shopping.

This is what I found at the nearby Shizutetsu Supermarket: a sushi set prepared by Uogashi Company (they have a branch in Yokohama), a fish and sushi company located in Numazu City, in the Eastern part of Shizuoka Prefecture.

The price: 980 yen! Less than 10 Euros or 13 US $!

And all the ingredients are clearly indicated!
Actually, you could buy in lieu of a bento box!
All the fish comes from nearby seas!

Now, what do we have?

From top to bottom, left to right:
Maguro & maguro akami/鮪赤身/tuna lean part. Not the bluefin tuna, but most probably mebachi maguro/目鉢鮪/big eye tuna.
Ika/烏賊/Cuttlefish, most probably surume ika/鯣烏賊/Japanese flying squid.
Shiradai (also called Shirodai)/白鯛/”White seabream” (Gymnocranius euanus Günther).
Sanma/秋刀魚/Pacific saury topped with chopped leek.
Tachiuo/太刀魚/Scabbard fish or largehead hairtail.

From top to bottom, left to right:
Ika/烏賊/Cuttlefish, most probably surme ika/鯣烏賊/Japanese flying squid.
Suzuki/鱸/Japanese seabass/seeperch.
Tamagoyaki/玉焼き/Japanese omelette.
Tachiuo/太刀魚/Scabbard fish or largehead hairtail.
Shirasu gunkan/シラス軍艦/A gunkan style sushi topped with raw sardine whitebait seasoned with chopped leek and ginger.
Sakuraebi Gunkan/桜海老軍艦/Cherry Shrimps seasoned with grated ginger.
You will not find the last two in Tokyo except in ridiculously priced exclusive restaurants!
Soy sauce and grated wasabi.

You will not find such a set at that kind of low price (if you are lucky enough to discover them fresh) for such variety and quality in Tokyo!

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

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Sushi in Shizuoka City: Sushi Ko (September 2011)

“Super California Roll”!

Service: Very friendly and attentive. Always ready to please
Facilities: great overall cleanliness
Prices: Appropriate. Good value
Strong points: Great blending of local and all-Japan seafood. Great list of Shizuoka sakes! Both modern and traditional sushi.

We are entering the Autumn season, albeit a very hot one, and new fish are being caught.
It was time to visit Sushi Ko, my favorite sushi bar/resturant in Shizuoka City to check on the new arrivals!

The present Master of the Place, Mr. Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太 has just been rewarded with the Gold Medal at the Japan National Sushi Design Contest, an event held every 4 years!
Mr. Oda, the former Master, who is presently in charge of the mother company, was also rewarded the same prize 4 years ago!

So, what did we enjoy?

Kinmeidai/金目鯛/Splendid Alfonsino sashimi (Izu Peninsula).

Beautiful colors!
Notice the edible shiso/perilla/紫蘇 flowers!

This is the season of the katsuo/鰹/bonito which swim across the Suruga Bay!

Usually served with freshly grated ginger, chopped scallions and thinly sliced red onions.
Thinly sliced fresh garlic is another option!

A wink to America: Super California Roll! Can you guess what’s in it?

Sake from Masu Ichi Brewery in Shizuoka City!

Chyawanmushi/茶碗蒸/ Japanese steamed salted pudding!

Hirame/平目/Sole-Grouper (Shizuoka) just seasoned with a little salt and lime juice. No need for soy sauce!

Sazae/サザエ/Turbo Shell!

the whole flesh is first taken out, sliced and cooked inside the shell!

The liver of the turbo shell!

Tachiuo/太刀魚/Scabbard Fish (Shizuoka) served as aburi/炙り/grilled on the skin surface seasoned with ponzu and served with momijioroshi/grated daikon and chili pepper, and chopped scallions.

A sneak view of the sashimi plate prepared for a group of five at a table!

Magurozuke/鮪漬け/marinated tuna (lean part), a real dessert!

Ikura/イクラ/salmon’s roe served as “gunkan nigiri/軍艦握り/Mothership Nigiri. Notice the small empty “boats” following the mothership?

A cute fleet, isn’t it?

How about that for tamagoyaki/玉子焼き/Japanese omelette design?

Anago/穴子/conger eel (Shizuoka), a universal favorite!

A vegan sushi nigiri with lightly boiled Chinese cabbage and Japanese hot mustard!

A real dessert: Home-made fig Wine Stew!

To be followed…

SUSHI KO
420-0032 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 2-3-1 (Aoba Park Street)
Tel.: 054-251-9701
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (in 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

Sushi Restaurant: Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City (June 2011)

Umazura tsukuri/ウマズラ造り/Filefish sashimi plate!

Sushi Ko in Aoba Park Street in Shizuoka City is the sushi bar owned by Sushi Ko Main Sushi Restaurant in Ta-machi in the same city.
Mr. Oda has just been asked to take charge of the main restaurant while his very capable second, Mr. Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太さん has been promoted Head of the Sushi Bar in Aoba.
The Bar is as good as ever, but now I will also have to check the main restaurant!

While the Missus drank her Chardonnay, I was sipping my sake brewed by Takashima Brewery in Numazu City. The above shows the snack coming with the first drink: octopus/tako/蛸 served with seaweed, momijioroshi/grated daikon with chili pepper, chopped thin leeks and ponzu!

We managed to get our favorite seats at the counter, but one half of the tatami room was busy with a group of 11 hungry salarymen!
Loads of consecutive work!

Our seats gave us the perfect view of the chefs at work!
They know us well, so they actually welcome the photography (without flash!), but make a point to ask for permission if you are a new customer (the latter applies for any restaurant!)!

On the menu of the day they had umazura tsukuri/ウマズラ造り/Filefish Sashimi Plate.
This fish whose name literally means “Horse face” is a kind of filefish found in Suruga Bay.
It was taken alive out of the fish pond!

Filefish in general is not that popular in other countries, but it definitely deserves attention.
Although it has not much meat, it makes for beautiful sashimi!

For a closer view!

Here it is, served with a dip made with its fresh liver and ponzu!
A real morsel!

Its cheeks were served deep-fried!

Chef Birukawa has kept a little to serve the perfect filefish nigiri topped with its liver and momijioroshi and some thin leeks and wasabi between the neta/topping and the shari/rice!

The Missus always asks for the maguro ponkara/鮪ぽんから/deep-fried tuna served with momiji oroshi, ponzu and sliced red onions!

Whatever the sushi restaurant we always ask for magurozuke/鮪漬/marinated tuna as each establishment has a different recipe!

Sushi Ko always have great botan ebi/牡丹海老/large sweet prawn from Hokkaido in season!

Their freshness means we are guaranteed their deep-fried heads. They make for beautiful crackers!

When we asked for anago/穴子/conger eel, they came in the perfect combination of one piece shio-aji/塩味/salted and the other one, tare-aji/たれ味/brushed with sweet sauce!

Another favorite: tachiuo aburi nigiri/太刀魚炙り握り/Seared scabbard fish nigiri seasoned with ponzu!

Chef Mirukawa’s specialty: Sushi Millefeuille!

The Millefeuille was made with maguro akami/lean tuna, cucumber, avocado and topped with flying fish roe!

A vegetarian/vegan sushi roll with natto, shiso and umboshi!

Another vegetarian/vegan sushi roll with kanpyou/干瓢/dry gourd shavings and plenty of wasabi!

Tamagoyaki/Japanese omelette!

We usually finish such meals with hot food.
The Missus had nameko mushroom miso soup with plenty of seaweed.

As for me I had chyawanmushi/茶碗蒸し/Japanese-style hot salted pudding!

And we were graciously offered Shizuoka-grown musk melon as we paid our (very reasonable) bill!

To continue…

SUSHI KO
420-0032 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 2-3-1 (Aoba Park Street)
Tel.: 054-251-9701
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (in 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

Sushi Restaurant: Narukawa in Shizuoka City

“Namida Maki/涙巻/Tear Roll” made with fresh wasabi root from Shizuoka!

Service: Professional and very friendly. Keen to please customers
Facilities: Very clean overall. Great washroom
Prices: Appropriate
Strong points: Extensive usage of local fish. Shizuoka sake.

Hiroki Narukawa/生川広樹さん

I’ve known Chef Hiroki Narukawa for ages since his apprentice days.
Since then he has flown on his own wings and has recently opened his restaurant Narukawa/なるかわ at a new and more spacious address.

In spite of the higher class atmosphere and the increased staff, the prices have not changed and can be considered as reasonable for the quality he serves even in this very difficult to please Prefecture!

Although the seating is modern and almost western in concept it is still very much a traditional atmosphere!

There are naturally menus and sets, but I would encourage you to have a look at the offerings of the day under the glass display and talk with Narukawa San before you start ordering!
Personally I do not bother looking at menus and prefer a more social introduction. The fact that I know the chef also helps! LOL

The Missus and I usually starts with sashimi!
The above is hirame konbujime/平目昆布〆/sole lightly preserved in konbu seaweed. From Shizuoka!

Aka mutsu/赤むつ/Rosy Seabass from Shizuoka.

Kaisui uni/海水海栗/Sea Urchin in his original seawater eaten as it is! Extravagant! From Hokkaido!

Hotate nigiri/帆立握り/Scallops Nigiri. Large! From Northern Japan!

The filaments, roe and liver of the same scallops. A dish that would please a lot of people all over the world!

Madai nigiri/真鯛/True seabream/grouper-Red Seabream/grouper nigiri. From Shizuoka!

Magurozuke nigiri/鮪漬/marinated tuna (akami/lean part). Probably from Shizuoka or North of Japan (I forgot to ask as I always ask for this morsel in Shizuoka!).

Asupara mentaiko maki/アスパラ明太子巻/asparagus and hot cod roe (with mayonnaise) roll. For the Missus! The asparagus is from Shizuoka, the mentaiko from Kyushu island!

While the Missus had her mentaiko I had a kanpyou maki/干瓢巻/gourd shavings first dried, then marinated. With real wasabi from Shizuoka, almost a dessert!

Suwagani nigiri/諏訪蟹/snow crab nigiri from Hokkaido!

Shiroebi kakiage/白海老あき揚げ/white shrimps tempura from Toyama Prefecture!

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Namida Maki/涙巻/Tear roll made with freshly sliced wasabi root from Shizuoka. Extravagant!

For a closer view!

Menegi nigiri to daikon zuke/芽葱と大根漬/leek sprouts and pickled (lime) daikon. All from Shizuoka!


Ikura Mini Donburi/イクラミニ丼/mini bowl of salmon’s roe!

To be continued…

NARUKAWA
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 1-5-2
Tel.: 054-221-1689
Business hours: 11::30~13:30, 17:00~02:00
Closed on Mondays
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE

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

Shizuoka Marine Products at Sushi Ko: Seabream and Cuttlefish

Left: Tennen Madai/天然真鯛/Wild Red Seabream
Right: Aori Ika/障泥烏賊/Bigfin Reef Squid

Last night I had another occasion to visit my favorite Sushi Restaurant Sushi Ko in Aoba Koen/青葉公園/”Green Leaves Park” in Shizuoka City.
I go through many of my own traditional enquiries before choosing my morsels, and one of them is to find out what is on the “sashimi menu of the day”!

This was when I noticed two items labeled “Tennen/天然, meaning “natural/wild” from Shizuoka Prefecture, more precisly from the Suruga Bay:

Madai/真鯛/Red Seabream (English information, Japanese information)

The fish is not only served as sashimi, but being very fresh (actually alive in a tank at Sushi Ko!), it is also served with its skin in aburi/炙り/grilled style!
The flesh is extremely tender and almost sweet. No wonder it is so prized in Japan!

Aori Ika/障泥烏賊/Bigfin Reef Squid (English information, Japanese information)

Sushi Ko serves it in strips that have been indented at regular spaces for an easier bite and for a better exposure to taste.
The cuttlefish is in fact easy to chew and very tasty!

Notice the edible perilla/shiso/紫蘇 flowers and garted wasabi from Shizuoka, too!

Sushi Ko
shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho. 2-3-1 (Aoba Koen)
Tel.: 054-2512898
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

Sushi Restaurant: Autumnal Visit to Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City!

The other day the Missus and I paid our Autumnal visit to Sushi Ko, one of our favourite sushi restaurants in Shizuoka City!

Since I have already introduced this great restaurant many a time, I will skip the niceties and introduce what we had right away!

Katsuo aburi/seared bonito as an appetizer with the first drink.

Kampachi/Japanese Amberjack (Western-style) carpaccio.

Anago/conger eel. Notice that the wasabi is on top!

Ishidai/Seabream-Snapper variety

Kujira/whalemeat

Deep-fried tuna cubes.

Hotate/Scallops.

Magurozuke/Marinated tuna.

For a closer view of the same!

Tachiuo Aburi/Seared scabbard fish.

Sushi Millefeuille. Sorry for the fuzzy pic. I’m using a new cell phone camera!

One of the best local sake, Hatsukame!

East meets West: scallops gratin!

The Missus’ favourite: spicy scallops roll!

Vegan sushi!

Sakura/Horsemest.

Seafood miso soup with seaweed.

Botan Ebi/Large sweet prawns. Sorry for the fuzzy picture again!

The heads of the same, deep-fried!

Sushi Ko
shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho. 2-3-1 (Aoba Koen)
Tel.: 054-2512898
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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; Jacqueline Church; The Foodonymph (in Dubai!); Alchemy, Simple Ingredients, magical Food (in Ireland!); Curious Foodie; Mr. Foodie (London/UK)

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

Vegan Sushi at Sushi Ko (2010/09/16)

For once, thatis last Thursday, the heat has somewhat abated.
We even had welcome rain almost all day long.
The Missus and I did not need more encouragement to pay a belated visit to our favourite sushi Restaurant in Shizuoka Cyt, Sushi Ko.
We did have a lot I will describe in the next posting but I thought my vegan and vegetarian friends would like to see a separate article about vegan/vegetarian sushi!

Mr. Oda seved us 5 different types.
The first two are menegi/芽葱 or thin leeks sprouts topped with a little yuzukoshio paste.
The second one is himesoba/姫蕎麦 or buckwheat sprouts secured with a small band of nori/dry seaweed.
Both were serve raw.

The third one was kaiwaredaikon/貝割れ大根 or daikon sprous, boiled and topped with some umeboshi/梅干 pickled Japanese plum paste.
The fourth was raw mitsuba/三つ葉 or Japanese Honeywort secured with a thin band of nori/dry seaweed.

The fifth was mitsuba/三つ葉 or Japanese Honeywort again but slightly boiled and served as gunkan shushi/軍艦寿司 style.

Looking forward to the next visit!

Sushi Ko
Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho. 2-3-1 (Aoba Koen)
Tel.: 054-2512898
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (Japanese)

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; Jacqueline Church; The Foodonymph (in Dubai!); Alchemy, Simple Ingredients, magical Food (in Ireland!); Curious Foodie; Mr. Foodie (London/UK)

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