Capcom will open a cafeteria and restaurant in Saitama by the end of this month. They will serve potion drinks and food with various ornaments inspired by Capcom video-games, most of them from Monster Hunter X. Next to the coffee shop they will also open a shop with exclusive merchandising.
When people who are traveling for the first time in Japan ask me for food recommendations I always tell them to explore and try anything they find. It is very difficult to find a bad place in Japan, on average, restaurants will prepare you amazing food.
I was with two friends and we just entered the nearest yakitori place. We ordered and the yakitori in general was just ok, but the shiitake that you can see in the picture being prepared by the woman was the best one I have ever tried! The texture and the flavor was just perfect. My friends agreed and we ended up having tons of shiitake for dinner
Food recommendations in Japan: explore and try many things, even after ten years I’m still discovering new places and dishes!
The Japanese love fish, not only from the sea, but also fish (Sakana 魚) from rivers (Kawa, 川). Depending on the area and the season, the types of fish available vary a lot. The most common ones are ayu 鮎 and iwana 岩魚, which you can find almost throughout the country. They are easy to spot in a menu or in street food stalls because they are almost always barbecued and served with skewers.
The restaurant chain Coco Curry Ichibanya 壱番屋 which specializes in Japanese curry has been running a Dragon Ball Z marketing campaign for the last few weeks. It is part of the promotion of the new Dragon Ball Z movie and it will last until May 31st. If you are in Japan and you like curry for each 1,000 yen that you spend in the restaurant you will participate in a contest to get a plate or an original trading card.
This is how a Coco Curry Ichibanya 壱番屋 restaurant looks. In Tokyo you can spot many of them near subway stations.
This strange restaurant built on top of a tree can be found in Okinawa not far from Naha airport along highway 58.
The tree is a Gajumaru (also known in India as Banyan), which is a species of the genus Ficus. The Gajumaru/Banyan is a tree that you can typically find in Asian tropical areas, and they can also be seen in Hawaii. If you watched Lost you surely saw them many times as they are used by the characters in the series to hide from the smoke monster. Gajumarus are also known because Robinson Crusoe built his house in one.
My ass trying to climb a Gajumaru.
According to the mythology of Okinawa, the Kijimuna (small elf-like creatures) live in Gajumarus. Legend has it that the Kijimuna can only be seen by kids that have a pure heart. If you go to Okinawa you will see signs with Kijimuna images in many places, mostly in forest areas where there are gajumarus. However they are not so abundant as the Shisa.
A video (not mine) in which you can appreciate the size of the trunk of a gajumaru tree.
The other day I went to the supermarket to buy some salmon and I found some whale meat from Iceland. I have been reading about it online and it seems that the Japanese can’t catch enough whales for the demand that exists in Japan. To solve the problem the government agreed to import whale meat from Iceland and Norway in 2009.
Nagashi Soumen 流し素麺 is a Japanese Summer tradition which consists on putting noodles (Soumen, 素麺) on a bamboo cane and leaving them fall along together with water. If you participate you will have to catch the noodles with your chopsticks as they pass in front of you. The more you catch the more you eat!
Here in Tokyo during the last few days we have felt a larger police presence, mostly in train stations, due to Barack Obama’s visit. The first that Obama has done in Tokyo just after landing has been to eat the best sushi in the world with Shinzo Abe, the prime minister of Japan.
“I was born in Hawaii and ate a lot of sushi, but this was the best sushi I’ve ever had in my life.”
Yesterday the first tuna auction of the year was held in Tsukiji where the first tuna of the year, weighting 230 kg, was sold for 7.36 million yen (around 70,000 dollars/50,000 euros). The price is far cheaper than the tuna sold in the auction 3 years ago which was sold for 32.49 million yen.