Tokyo

やよい軒 Yayoiken @ Tokyo, Japan

We arrived Tokyo from Fujikawaguchiko by bus in the evening on day 9. After checking in our hostel, we went looking for dinner nearby as it was already quite late by then and we’re really tired too. We settled on Yayoiken やよい軒, which is just 3 minutes walk from our accommodation. Yayoiken is a chain dining restaurant specializing in teishoku (Japanese set meal) and donburi (rice bowl dish). Ironically, our first dinner at Kyoto was also a teishoku. You can find Yayoiken everywhere in Japan and also in USA, Asia (Taiwan, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore) and Australia.

Salt-Grilled Mackerel Teishoku @ Yayoiken やよい軒, Tokyo
This beautiful mackerel! 😍
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Fujikawaguchiko

Beautiful Mount Fuji Yōkan From 金多留満 Kindaruma @ Fujikawaguchiko, Japan

Fujikawaguchiko was the place that I look forward to visit the most during my virgin Japan trip last year. What’s so special about Fujikawaguchiko? Mount Fuji!!! 🗻 You can see Mount Fuji from here and it’s also the more popular base for climbing Mount Fuji. You see, Fujikawaguchiko is situated at the foothills of Fujisan. There’s also a really big lake in Fujikawaguchiko called Kawaguchiko (Kawaguchi Lake).

On day 9, after visiting Oishi Park 大石公園, we stopped by Kindaruma 金多留満 for this one of a kind wagashi called Mount Fuji yōkan. Being a biggie fan of Fujisan, I made sure to grab this unique souvenir. What’s yōkan? Yōkan is a type of Japanese jelly dessert. Its texture is way thicker from any regular kinds that I’ve eaten before.

Let’s visit the shop first:
Wagashi @ Kindaruma 金多留満, Fujikawaguchiko
Kanetamaru mochi かねたまる餅 (left) and 財縁金塊菓, a type of cake which looks a lot like financier (right).
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Chicken

Sumac Rosemary Lemon Roasted Chicken

Woah, the last time I posted a recipe was back in February. That’s really a long time ago. To break the ice, I thought I’ll share this sumac rosemary lemon roasted chicken recipe which I made during the weekend. I’ve been using sumac quite a lot lately, mostly on salad. This was my first time combining sumac (and rosemary+lemon) with chicken, and I gotta say the end result is pretty good. Give it a try and let me know if you like it, ya?

Sumac Rosemary Lemon Roasted Chicken
Sumac rosemary lemon roasted chicken. 😍
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Mishima

名物 三島そば Meibutsu Mishima Soba @ Mishima, Japan

On day 8 of our Japan trip, we left Kyoto for Fujikawaguchiko with a 2 hours stopover at Mishima. My initial eating plan at Touchuuken got burned because I didn’t realize this shop is inside the ticket gate in Mishima Station (although I saw the shop right after we alighted the shinkansen). Meong!!! (Blur blur) I thought we could go in again or maybe there’s another Touchuuken outside the ticket gate. What’s so special about Touchuuken? Well, it’s a standing style soba place where you eat while standing.

Anyway, we ended up eating at Meibutsu Mishima Soba 名物 三島そば which is located at another part of Mishima Station. It’s actually in Izuhakone Railway 伊豆箱根鉄道 (inside Mishima Station) and yet can be accessed from outside of Mishima Station. Meibutsu Mishima Soba is a semi-standing eatery. If you alighted at Izuhakone Railway, there’s only the stand style option but if you’re like us coming from outside of Mishima Station, you have the options of eat standing and also sitting. Guess which one I went for? Read on… hehe

Meibutsu Mishima Soba 名物 三島そば @ Mishima
Meibutsu Mishima Soba 名物 三島そば. If you look at the right, there’s a ticket gate. So those at Izuhakone Railway, can only stand at the outside of this shop to have their meal. Of course, they can choose to exit the gate or before going in the gate to have their meal sitting down inside the shop.
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Kyoto

稲福 Inafuku @ Kyoto, Japan

It was a wet Sunday morning when we visited Fushimi Inari Taisha in Kyoto on day 7 of our Japan trip. We spent less than 2 hours there and didn’t really explore much due to weather condition and gadget problem (2 persons sharing an umbrella is a no-no especially if you’re traveling). We had our lunch nearby the shrine in one of the many shops that serves kitsune udon called Inafuku 稲福.

Kitsune udon is an udon dish accompanied by aburaage 油揚げ (deep-fried tofu). It can be served in large piece(s) or sliced. Why it’s called kitsune is because it’s a favorite food of the foxes (fox is kitsune in Japanese). Now, you must be wondering what has fox got to do with anything? Well, kitsune are regarded as the messengers of the spirit Inari (which was enshrined in Fushimi Inari Taisha). That’s why it’s a must-try when one visit Fushimi Inari Taisha.

Inafuku 稲福 @ Kyoto
Fake food display outside Inafuku 稲福.
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Kyoto

Lovely Parfait From 家傳京飴 祇園小石 Kaden Kyoame Gion Koishi @ Kyoto, Japan

On a cold rainy autumnal Kyoto, one would think people will shy away from any cold treats and thus us, the smart tourist 😅 will get a table as soon as we arrive. But nope. When we reached Kaden Kyoame Gion Koishi 家傳京飴 祇園小石 around 2.55pm after our visit to Yasaka Shrine on day 7, there was a long line ahead. And though I have this thought: “Let’s just go”, I didn’t have the heart to utter it because my sister is a big fan of matcha parfait.

We waited for around 30 minutes, standing most of the times and later sitting (when it’s near our turn). After placing our order, the sweet treats arrived some 16 minutes later. Doesn’t sounds long but I believe most, if not all of the ingredients are supposed to be prepared before hand?

Warabimochi & Anmitsu Set わらび餅と餡蜜のセット @ Kaden Kyoame Gion Koishi 家傳京飴 祇園小石, Kyoto
Warabimochi and anmitsu set わらび餅と餡蜜のセット @ 1,070 yen. Both are super delicious especially after adding their famous brown sugar syrup. The brown sugar (kokutō) sourced from Okinawa is unlike anything I’ve tasted before; dreamy!
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