Sorry for the radio silence, we went on a 2 week vacation to Japan and got back not too long ago 🙂 We had a really great time having visited Tokyo, Kyoto, Miyajima Island, Nara, and Nagano. Each city was very unique and they all had their own local specialities as well! For example, Miyajima Island was famous for their oysters and anago (sea eel). Nagano was famous for their Buckwheat Noodles.
We think the great thing about Japan aside from their unique culture is that no matter where you go eat, it’s very rare to stumble across food that won’t taste good. We think their standards when it comes to quality of food is generally just a lot higher, especially in Tokyo since it is one of the food capitals in the world.
As major foodies (and the fact that this is a cooking blog dedicated to food), we had to document all of our food adventures but if we were to post all of our photos, you would be scrolling for days! So we just picked some of our favourites to share with you 🙂
The photo above is one of the many decadent dishes we had in Shoraian, a restaurant hidden in the forests of Arashiyama, the outskirts of Kyoto. They specialize in tofu dishes but aside from that, you can see that they take great attention to detail even in their plating presentation.
Even the food they presented us there were super cute. Check out this frog (made from what seems like an Edamame bean) sitting on a rock which they placed on a leaf lily pad. Adorable!
This was definitely my boyfriend’s favourite – the mountain of uni (sea urchin) placed on top of the grilled onigiri. You cannot get something like this in Toronto at the price which we paid (less than $10 CDN)!
Tuna is my absolute favourite fish when it comes to sushi so when we heard about a restaurant that serves tuna ribs, we had to go! This is what they were famous for but you have to order at least a day in advance so that they could stock up for you. When we first got to the restaurant, there were these empty shells next to our chopsticks and we had no idea what they were for. Later when we were served the tuna ribs, we were told that we used the shell to scrape the tuna meat off the ribs. Amazing! No meat went to waste as whatever was unfinished, the chef just made another dish with it for us.
Chazuke was another one of my favourite dishes there. It’s simple, delicious and it never fails to warm me up when it’s a bit chilly outside. It’s also very cleansing since I’m essentially drinking green tea with my rice and it’s a nice change from some of the other heartier meals that I had earlier.
Finally, our food highlights to Japan wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the sushi! One of the best sushi experiences we had on our trip to Tokyo this time round was dining at Hashiguchi. Unfortunately, the restaurant did not allow for photos so we were unable to document it. When the sushi chef served us the sushi there, you could actually see the sushi sink into the plate due to how fluffy the rice is.
However, Sushi Oono was also good and the tuna sushi that you see in the photo above is from there. I’ve never seen marinated maguro (tuna) look so beautiful in my life. The fish melts in your mouth!
Overall our trip was a blast and we would highly recommend it to anyone. This is our second time returning to Japan and though we spent 2 – 2.5 weeks in Japan each time, we still feel like there’s so much more to see. For our foodie friends out there, visiting Tokyo is a must. Even their baked goods are awesome!! I had croissants there that were equally as good, if not better, than some of the ones I had in Paris! They even have some unique flavours such as Squid Ink and Curry Baguettes. Pretty cool huh?
We definitely feel more inspired after coming back from Japan in terms of what to make. For example, I definitely want to make matcha or curry baguettes myself! Eventually I’d want to make good chazuke at home too. Stay tuned for when that happens 🙂
Have you been to Japan before and what was your experience like? Let us know in the comments below.