Hamamatsu and His Highness the Eel: Geography

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fooduniversity.org As we saw in the first installment of this series, in Japan eel is almost exclusively prepared in the Kabayaki style and is closely associated with summer. Geographically speaking, it has very strong links to Hamamatsu, a city in Shizuoka Prefecture. From a gastronomic perspective, there is much that can be said about the … Continue reading Hamamatsu and His Highness the Eel: Geography

Perhaps Two of the World’s Most Popular Distillery Tours: Suntory’s Hakushu & Yamazaki Distilleries

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In early 2020 we had reserved a Hakushu Distillery tour. As we remember all too well, that was the year the world changed. In Japan, we entered a state of emergency - people were urged to stay home; restaurants were forced to close early and stop serving alcohol; traveling across borders was discouraged; and many … Continue reading Perhaps Two of the World’s Most Popular Distillery Tours: Suntory’s Hakushu & Yamazaki Distilleries

Beverages in Sketches: NOT Sketchy Beverages

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Recently we found ourselves ensconced at a popular resort--Hoshino Resorts Risonare Yatsugatake--that featured a number of local wines encased in one of those coin-operated tasting contraptions. We dutifully fed our shekels into the machine’s many maws and received a few drops of wine in return, barely enough for a full analysis, but we persevered. Below … Continue reading Beverages in Sketches: NOT Sketchy Beverages

Perfect for Breakfast? Yogurt Liqueur from Asama Farm (浅間のヨーグルト酒)

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Moo-ve over, eggnog: there’s a new milk-based alcoholic beverage in town! Kusatsu onsen is considered one of Japan’s top three hot springs. Even if you have never visited this place, you have likely seen images like this: Yubatake Or this: Netsunoyu When driving to Kusatsu from Tokyo, you can drive past the Asamashuzo Tourism Center … Continue reading Perfect for Breakfast? Yogurt Liqueur from Asama Farm (浅間のヨーグルト酒)

Nishibori Shuzo:

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19th-Century Kura, 21st-Century Innovation On a fine winter morning we caught a train to Oyama City, Tochigi Prefecture. A meandering city bus took us from the train station to our destination, Nishibori Shuzo, and to our appointment with Tetsuya Nishibori, the Sixth Generation Kuramoto (brewery owner). Only a short hour and a half from Shinjuku … Continue reading Nishibori Shuzo:

Animal Kingdom Safari Park Special Reserve (Red)

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Enthusiastic Wolf We at drinkingjapan.org are always open to new experiences. Recently, we decided to spend some time with the animals—no, not the Black Friday sales crowd! Sensing the need for a little rustication, we got up off our old rusty-dusties and traveled to Gunma Prefecture to visit Gunma Safari Park safari.co.jp. In addition to … Continue reading Animal Kingdom Safari Park Special Reserve (Red)