Wa Cafe Nodoka: 和カフェ和花

和 wa: this has a dual meaning, "harmony" or "Japan/Japanese," specifically the concept of peaceful unity and conformity within a social group. It is also one of the 4 tenets of Japanese tea ceremony ("wa," "kei," "sei," and "jyaku" meaning harmony, respect, purity, and tranquility). Wa cafe Nodoka is a rather recent addition to the Minatogawa … Continue reading Wa Cafe Nodoka: 和カフェ和花

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Mushrooms: きのこ

きのこ (hiragana), キノコ (katakana), as well as possible kanji 茸, 菌, or 蕈: all pronounced KINOKO... means mushroom! There are many types of mushrooms you can find in the grocery stores and farmers markets of Okinawa... pretty much all of them are delicious. Here is a short list which I will update later with some … Continue reading Mushrooms: きのこ

Book cafe&hall ゆかるひ: Making “oyaki”

oyaki おやき: a style of dumplings from Nagano prefecture I went to a workshop organized by a company called "Table Watch"--- to learn how to make dumplings from an Okinawan obaachan, Yaka-san. Oyaki is a traditional Nagano food. The Book cafe&hall Yukaruhi is located on the 3rd floor of the Yaka Building in Naha (Yaka-san's … Continue reading Book cafe&hall ゆかるひ: Making “oyaki”

New Year’s Foods in Okinawa

osechi-ryouri 御節料理: New Year's cuisine Previously I posted some basic info about New Year's celebrations in Okinawa. But this is all about the food, so let's talk food. The grocery aisles are lined with various important foods on display, many of which may not be too familiar to foreigners. In this modern day you will … Continue reading New Year’s Foods in Okinawa

Christmas Tea Ceremony: クリスマス茶会

茶会 chakai: a tea "gathering," a more informal tea ceremony. クリスマス kurisumasu: Christmas Recently I had the good fortune to attend a chaikai 茶会 here in Okinawa. The location was at Shoufuuen 松風苑 in Haebaru 南風原 (southern part of the island), the birthplace of Ultraman ウルトラマン (hometown of Tetsuo Kinjo, scriptwriter)! The theme of the … Continue reading Christmas Tea Ceremony: クリスマス茶会

Miso 味噌 in Okinawa, part II

Previously I made a post about a special type of miso found in Okinawa, called andansu. But this is not the only miso you will find, as you can find all the regular Japanese varieties of miso as well. Sometimes you can find locally produced miso, and other brands will be big nation-wide corporate brands … Continue reading Miso 味噌 in Okinawa, part II

Prefectural Product Fairs

Often times there are prefecture or area product fairs that travel to Okinawa. One of the best locations to host these is the Ryubo department Palette Kumoji store in Naha, though often times you can find smaller scale fairs set up in the Aeon and SanA malls. Kyoto and Hokkaido seem to be the most … Continue reading Prefectural Product Fairs

Vegan Ramen in Okinawa

There is a place called Stripe Noodles in Chatan, Okinawa (outside of the American Village area) that serves a type of vegan ramen (in addition to several meaty ramen types, predominantly know for their "steak ramen"). This place is very Americanized and a significant majority of the customers are foreigners, especially American. It becomes obvious … Continue reading Vegan Ramen in Okinawa

Street food… in Okinawa?

Hmmm... street food in Okinawa? To be honest, this is not really much of a thing outside of matsuri (festivals); matsuri are the best times to find all these foods. There are no big street food markets or night markets like some other areas of Asia. But, there are still things I would consider street … Continue reading Street food… in Okinawa?

Okinawa All-island Eisa and Orion Beer Festival

One of the most popular natsu matsuri (summer festival) 夏祭り is the All-island Okinawa Eisa and Orion beer festival held the weekend following obon-- at least with Americans that is. Held at the Koza Sports Park, I have seen more Americans at this festival than any other. It is actually 2 festivals, coinciding with each other: … Continue reading Okinawa All-island Eisa and Orion Beer Festival