Japan Trip 2018 – Day Ten



Went to a Buddhist temple on the way to Kitakata.

We like Kitakata because two years ago we had a gestalt culinary experience there; which we hoped to duplicate.

The temple has a gingko tree that is over 800 years old.

But the open, unwalled hall, built almost 1 000 years ago is now my preferred Japanese dojo space.

From here to the restaurant: we talked, negotiated an agreed price and food type and a time to return.

We wandered and returned.

Then we ate.

It is nice when expectations are not just me, but exceeded.

Food was good!

Good food!

Saké good!

Good saké!

From here we went to the temple that made the red cow famous, their name escapes me, but is possibly on an Aizu brochure somewhere.

Nice temple, with river and misty mountains as a backdrop.

Stopped somewhere on the way home that was not where we thought it was and then went home.

Had a bath, a beer, a saké; may relax soon.



We got up and had breakfast, yum, yum.

Then went to the AKABE TEMPLE!!

This was where Akabe became famous in Aizu.

Said thank you to Akabe.

Had a selfie, then did a video for class 5S.

Then had a yum, yum lunch, then back to the minshuku.

Oh, also, me and mum went in a graveyard that was closed then back to the minshuku.

Now I am writing this diary, waiting for my shower and bath.

See you later!!!


Today’s Tsukemono

Connoisseur one

Minshuku Aizu


Light rainfall.

A heavy onion theme in this morning’s menu.

The noodle broth and fried potato featured prominently.


Pickle 1: shallot

At first, it looked like a large clove of garlic.

Firm, with a slight sheen, almost pearlescent.

You have to go all in on this one. It is too slippery to be held with chopsticks and bit into.

Not overpowering in onion flavour, but definitely like eating raw onion. The brine was sweet and thin. Almost superfluous.

I can’t think of a time I would eat this again.

It has no complexity or subtlety.


Pickle 2: Plum

25mm in diameter.

Heavily wrinkled, like a walnut.

The skin has a slight sandpaper texture.

It is a firm, crisp pickle that is tart and the medicinal sweetness comes very late in the tasting.

The size is dominated by the pit, which makes it difficult to eat around.

Honestly, that damn onion is still all over my tongue and this ruined anything good this pickle has to offer.

It is mediocre in quality and too much work for the small reward.


Connoisseur two

Another plum.

More traditional umeboshi than yesterday, but too crisp for my taste.

I enjoy popping a whole umeboshi into my mouth and sucking it off the seed.

Not possible with this plum – too large, too hard.

It remains uneaten on the plate.


I did not regard the shallot as a pickle.


Connoisseur one – Kitakata observations

Kitakata eggplant symphony restaurant

Pickle – cucumber

Thick slices, probably 10 mm thick and 50 mm in diameter.

A perfect size for takin two bites per piece.

A dominant sprout flavour.

Not very salty.

Crisp with a slight miso under current.

A good complement to the rest of the meal, which featured eggplant and wasabi tofu.

Only two pieces were provided.

It was a good interlude to the meal.

Any more sprout flavour and it would be too much, but it balanced the cucumber flavour with the sweetness of the roasted eggplant and took my mind off the sadness of knowing I would never again taste the ecstasy of that fig dish.

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