Since we’re getting ready to pop over to Japan to do some filming, I wanted to do some research on all the famous foods of every area in Japan. Japan’s really into the whole “famous things in each area” thing, and food is no exception. Each prefecture has its own famous food(s) that they’re known for. Might as well know what they are to eat them, right? The hard part is figuring out what all the famous foods are, since there are many and it’s unclear as to what is the most famous food in certain situations.

So, I’ve been doing my research. Because there are so many prefectures and so many famous foods, I’m going to be breaking this article up into two parts. One for North, East, and Central  prefectures of Japan, and one for West and South prefectures of Japan. At the end of the second part, we’ll also include a printout that has a map with numbers on all the prefectures corresponding to a list down below it. That way you can print this out, take it with you, and go on a rompy food excursion in Japan.

Each prefecture will be given 3 famous foods with the exception of a few (like Hokkaido, which is really, really big and tasty). While there are many other famous foods in every single prefecture, these are the ones that seemed to be the most famous. Of course, if you feel the need to add anything, please do so in the comments.

Hokkaido Prefecture’s Famous Foods


1. Uni, Ikura-don (Sea Urchin and Salmon Roe Rice Bowl) – This is simply a rice bowl that’s one half ikura (salmon roe) and one half uni (sea urchin). They’ve pretty much just combined two of the best seafoods into one donburi, and that makes me hungry.

2. Kaisen-don (Seafood rice bowl) – This is also a rice bowl, but instead of just having tow things it has many things. This donburi has many kinds of seafoods on top, which can include crab, shrimp, uni, ikura, salmon, tuna, and more.

3. Jingisukan (Grilled mutton) – This is a yakiniku style dish that’s served on a convex metal skillet or grill. The meat used is lamb which was said to be the meat of choice for Genghis Khan (the dish is named after him), and the skillet is shaped like their helmets which they supposedly cooked their food on.

4. Ishikari Nabe (Salmon and vegetable stew with miso and butter) – This stew is a miso based stew that includes some Hokkaido salmon. Great to eat in the cold Hokkaido winters.

5. Nama Uni Donburi (Raw sea urchin rice bowl) – More rice bowls! This is just donburi that’s all uni all the way. Personally, I’d get #1 because I wouldn’t be able to choose which topping I’d want, but this is a close second.

6. Chan Chan Yaki (Salmon Hotpot) – This is known as the fisherman’s hot pot. It includes salmon and vegetables and comes seasoned in a miso-based sauce.

Aomori Prefecture’s Famous Foods

aomori prefecture famous foods

1. Ichigoni aka Strawberry Stew (Sea urchin and abalone stew) – The sea urchin and abalone are boiled in dashi and seasoned with a bit of salt and shoyu (soy sauce). Sounds simple, but also sounds tasty, too. It gets this name not for having strawberries but for being a pinkish color, which is kind of like the color of strawberries.

2. Senbei Jiru (Senbei Soup) – If you’ve never had senbei, you’re missing out. If you’ve never had senbei jiru, well, you ought to try it. It’s probably not like the senbei you’re thinking of though. Senbei jiru tends to use fresh senbei which makes a lot more sense when you consider it’s being put in a soup.

3. Ooma Maguro Tuna Dishes – Ooma is a port known for their tuna. So, this one is getting all grouped together. There are apparently various Maguro Tuna dishes in Ooma Port that are worth trying. If you’re in Ooma, you’ll definitely want to order the tuna.

Iwate Prefecture’s Famous Foods

iwate prefecture famous foods

1. Morioka Reimen (Cold Korean Ramen) – This cold noodle ramen is similar to the North Korean dish Naengmyeon, except the noodles in Japan are made from potato starch. It has a spicy cold beef broth and often includes fruit to help cut the spicy.

2. Morioka Jajamen (Thick Chinese noodles with meat-miso sauce) – These noodles are bigger and more like udon. It’s a Chinese noodle dish that is topped with cucumber, green onion, ginger, a meat-miso sauce and more.

3. Wanko Soba (Small Bowl Soba) – This soba dish is served in small bowls. One theory is because during a festival there wasn’t enough soba to go around, so it was put into smaller bowls so everyone could have a taste. Oh Japan and your small bowls.

Miyagi Prefecture’s Famous Foods

miyagi prefecture famous foods

1. Gyuutan Yaki (Roast Cow Tongue) – This is what it sounds like… roast cow tongue. It’s usually sliced in to thin pieces so it’s easier to eat. It’s not like you have to stick the whole cow tongue in your mouth. Moo.

2. Zundamochi (Soy bean mochi / rice cake) – This is basically mochi covered in a soy bean paste. Mochi is good. Soy beans are good. Why not combine them together?

3. Kaki Ryori (Oyster Dishes) – Oyster dishes are well known for in Miyagi Prefecture. So, kind of like Ooma and its maguro, if you see an oyster dish in Miyagi it’s probably worth a try.

Akita Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Akita Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Kiritanpo Nabe (Kiritanpo Hot Pot) – This dish is like… super well known in Akita. It’s a hot pot dish served with kiritanbo, which is made from cooked rice that’s mashed and then formed into cylindars. Many other ingredients are included as well (just as with most nabe) but the kiritanpo is what makes it so well known.

2. Inaniwa Udon – This is a type of udon that’s, well, thin. Normally when you get udon the noodles are thick.

3. Hata Hata Zushi – Known as the “God Fish” for some reason, this fish is a bit sticky and doesn’t have scales. It’s one of those prefecture fishes you’ll mainly find in Akita, though, which probably is why it is kind of famous here.

Yamagata Prefecture’s Famous Foods

yamagata prefecture famous foods

1. Imo Nabe (Potato Stew) – This is essentially a potato nabe. Must be good though since it seems to come in at number one.

2. Tamago Konyaku (Ball Konyaku) – This is konyaku (nearly zero calories!) in the shape of balls, cooked in various ways.

3. Dongara Jiru (Dongara Soup) – This soup contains gray cod cut into large chunks and includes the bones, head and innards. It also includes many other ingredients as well and is a good dish for warming you up in the winter!

Fukushima Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Fukushima Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Kozuyu – This is a clear soup that contains dried scallop, vegetables, and more. Definitely has a distinct look to it, but looks tasty I think!

2. Kenchin Udon – This is a lot like Kenchin soup (see Ibaraki Prefecture), a soup with lots of roots and vegetables in a tasty broth. Looks like they add udon to theirs, though, making it a bit unique.

3. Nishin no Sanshou Zuke (Pickled Herring) – This is pickled herring that is layered in leaves of sansho and fermented in shoyu, sake, vinegar, and sugar. That way, you can eat it year round!

Niigata Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Niigata Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Noppei Jiru (Noppei Soup) – This soup is made from leftover vegetable parts cooked in sesame oil. This is often eaten at festivals, Buddhist ceremonies, and during the New Year.

2. SasaDango (Mugwort Flavored Mochi) – This was a portable food back in the Warring States period. It consists of mugwort flavored mochi and redbeans. To make it portable it’s wrapped in bamboo leaves.

3. Hegi Soba – These soba noodles use top-notch buckwheat and are served on a special plate called a “hegi.” The noodles are placed on the hegi so that they can be eaten one mouthful at a time. I like it when people separate my noodles for me so they’re easier to eat. No wonder these are famous.

Toyama Prefecture’s Famous Foods

toyama prefecture famous foods

1. Masuzushi (Trout Sushi) – Okay, when I made fun of sushi abominations a while back, I didn’t realize sushi pizza was an actual traditional thing in Japan. Whoops. Anyways, this salted trout is placed on the rice and then lined with bamboo leaves. It can come in round and not-round varieties.

2. Shiro Ebi Ryori (White Shrimp Dishes) – Toyama is also known for its white shrimp dishes. So, if you’re in Toyama, look out for things that have white shrimp in them.

3. Hotaru Ika Ryori (Hotaru Squid Dishes) – Also popular are Toyama’s Hotaru Squid. They’re little guys and can be cooked in a variety of ways. I like anything that involves Hotaru Ika and sticks, personally.

Ishikawa Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Ishikawa Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Kabura Zushi (Turnip Sushi) – This dish is made from salt preserved turnips and slices of amberjack (along with some other ingredients). It is cured together on malted rice… and here I thought vegetable sushi could never make me hungry.

2. Jibuni (Jibu Stew) – Stewed duck coated in flour, seasonal veggies, and Kanazawa wheat gluten. The “sound of stewing” something is “jibujibu,” which is where this stew got its name.

3. Kaga Ryori (Kaga Dishes) – Any connection to Chairman Kaga? Probably not. Still, #3 is a bunch of dishes bunched into one. This is a style of cooking that uses local seafood, wild greens, and heirloom vegetables. It’s not just one type of dish, though, so you’ll have to catch ’em all if you’re in the Kanazawa City area, where this is popular.

Fukui Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Fukui Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Oroshi Soba – This is a cold soba dish that has various toppings on it (unlike zaru soba). This is a good summer meal.

2. Satoimo no Koroni (Sato Potato Stew) – This simple potato dish only has a few ingredients. Sato potatoes, shoyu, sugar, and mirin. But, the simple taste is what makes this one so good.

3. Saba no Heshiko – This is preserved mackerel from Fukui Prefecture. The mackerel are cleaned, salted, and then put in rice bran. These pieces of fish are lightly grilled when it’s eating time.

Gifu Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Gifu Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Kurikinton (Mashed Sweet Potatoes With Sweetened Chestnuts) – Kuri (chestnuts) and kinton (sweet potatoes). Mush them together and you have Kurikinton. If you eat this you will do well monetarily (because it’s gold in color).

2. Keichan – Cabbage, chicken, and onions in a garlic shoyu marinade. It’s often cooked on a Mongolian skillet, just like jingisukan (see Hokkaido).

3. Hobamiso (Ho Tree Leaf Miso) – These leaves have antibacterial properties, which makes them good for keeping food clean. In this dish, though, you have dried ho leaves. On top, you put miso paste mixed with various other ingredients. It’s then heated over a fire and you eat the stuff on top.

Nagano Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Nagano Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Shinshuu Soba – Two parts wheat, eight parts buckwheat. Named after the old name of Nagano prefecture. I didn’t know it was known as the “trustful state.” That’s a good name to have when the Shogun’s watching.

2. Nozawanazuke (Nozawana Pickles) – Nozawana is a Japanese leaf vegetable. This is the pickled variant from Nagano.

3. Oyaki – This is a type of Japanese dumpling made with fermented buckwheat dough wrapped around various toppings. It’s usually steamed or broiled.

Yamanashi Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Yamanashi Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Houtou – This is stewed flat udon noodles and vegetables in a soup. The thing that makes this unique is that the udon noodles are prepared in the style of dumplings rather than noodles (which is why locals don’t consider this udon).

2. Yoshida no Udon (Yoshida’s Udon) – This special dish of Fujiyoshida City includes surprisingly firm and thick udon, topped with various ingredients. Each restaurant has it’s own suridane (spices), which means it can vary from place to place. Try the “niku udon.” It has horse meat. Neighhh!

3. Kabocha Houtou (Pumpkin Houtou) – Another houtou (see #1). This time it has Japanese pumpkin.

Aichi Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Aichi Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Hitsumabushi – This is Aichi style Unagi-don (which is unagi on rice). There is a little difference, though. First you eat the unagi as it is. Then, you add in some seasonings. Finally, when things are breaking up and getting crazy, add dashi (stock) to it and eat it like chazuke.

2. Miso Nikomi Udon – This is a type of udon that’s stewed in a miso broth with various other toppings (like cabbage, onions, carrots, negi, and so on). What a great sounding comfort food.

3. Tebasaki Karaage (Deep Fried Chicken Wings) – I mean, you can’t go wrong with chicken wings, especially if you fry them.

*Bonus: Miso Katsu – I always thought this was really famous, but it only makes it to #4 on the polls. Still, I like it. Aichi loves their miso.

Shizuoka Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Shizuoka Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Sakuraebi Ryouri (Cherry Shrimp Dishes) – If you’re in Shizuoka and you see sakura ebi on the menu be sure to pick it up. There’s many ways to prepare sakura ebi since it’s Shizuoka’s famous food.

2. Unagi No Kabayaki – This is unagi dipped and broiled in a soy based sauce over a grill. I’m a sucker for this.

3. Shizuoka Oden – This is a variet of Oden (various things like boiled eggs, daikon, potatoes, etc., that are first boiled then kept in a simmering broth until eaten). Shizuoka’s version of oden involves beef sinew for the broth and has a strong soy sauce. The broth is then replenished, so the items within get darker and darker and more and more delicious.

Gunma Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Gunma Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Yaki Manjuu (Cooked Maju) – This wheat flower that’s been fermented in saké is formed into small dumplings then skewered. On top is a sweet and savory miso-based sauce.

2. Okkirikomi – The most interesting part about this dish is the hand cut noodles, which can get pretty wide. The broth is mirin and shoyu based and includes vegetables, taro, and more.

3. Kamameshi – This is “kettle rice” which is rice that’s eaten from a communal iron pot called a “kama.” It also includes other ingredients besides rice, and the burned rice on the bottom adds an extra wonderful taste.

Tochigi Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Tochigi Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Shimotsukare – Simmered vegetables, soybeans, abura-age, and sake kasu. Many other additional ingredients can be added as well.

2. Gyouza – You know what gyoza/gyouza is, right? Dumplings, in English. Safe to say, if you’re anywhere the gyoza is pretty good. If you’re in Tochigi, it’s even better. In fact, it’s famous for its gyoza.

3. Chitake Soba – Chitake is a certain kind of mushroom, also known as the Lactarius Volemus. This is a soba dish that features said mushroom.

Ibaraki Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Ibaraki Prefecture Famous Foods

1. Ankou Nabe (Monkfish Stew) – When fresh, the super-ugly monkfish can be pretty good. This stew contains said monkfish, most notably its liver.

2. Ankou no Dobu Jiru (Monkfish ) – Once again it’s the monkfish. Ibaraki’s all about the monkfish. This soup contains all parts of the monkfish, including skin, liver, fins, stomach and more. Don’t waste your monkfish, kids.

3. Kenchin Jiru (Kenchin Soup) – Kenchinjiru is a soup that was first made at kencho-temple (where it got its name). A monk dropped a block of tofu and it broke into many pieces. He put it in the soup anyways, and kenchinjiru was born. The cool thing about this soup is the distribution of the tofu. Since it’s a bunch of little pieces, it’s so even!

Saitama Prefecture’s Famous Foods

Saitama Prefecture's Famous Foods

1. Hiyajiru Udon (Cold Soup Udon) – This is a cold-souped udon from Saitama. It has sesame seeds, cucumbers, and other awesome things.

2. Igamanjuu – The rice is cooked with azuki beans and put around a steamed bun with sweet bean jam. Tasty and sweet.

3. Niboutou – This is pretty much the same as Okkirikomi but… Saitama-ified, I guess. Mmmm, Saitama.

Chiba Prefecture’s Famous Foods

chiba prefecture's famous foods

1. Namerou – This is a fisherman’s dish consisting of horse mackerel, sardines, flying fish, and Pacific Saury. It’s cut into small bits and is added to miso, ginger, leeks, and green basil.

2. Yude Rakkasei (Steamed Peanuts) – This area is good for cultivating peanuts, so Chiba and Fuji City have become well known for said peanuts. Apparently these are the only peanuts that go well with alcohol in all of Japan.

3. Aji no Tataki (Minced Horse Mackerel) – This is horse mackerel that has been chopped up and placed with something fresh and tasty.

Tokyo Prefecture’s Famous Foods

tokyo prefecture famous foods

1. Monja Yaki– Similar to Okonomiyaki, Monja yaki is a pan-fried batter with various ingredients in it. The difference is mojayaki has more liquid and therefore more runny. It’s then eaten directly off the grill with a spatula.

2. Fukagawa Don (Fukagawa Rice Bowl) – Short-neck clams and hard clams are deep fried and mixed with onions and miso are put on rice. Back in the day these kinds of clams were very plentiful and this dish was popular in Fukagawa. Now it’s just famous.

3. Kusaya – This is a drinking snack consisting of salted and dried fish. It’s super smelly but has a pretty mild taste, all things considered.

Kanagawa Prefecture’s Famous Foods

kanagawa prefecture's famous foods

1. Kaigun Kare (Navy Curry) – Back in the day Yokosuka had quite the navy base. It still does, though the team that uses it is different. During this time, a type of local curry used with the navy popped up. Strangely, this kind of curry is actually what’s considered “normal” curry in Japan now, though it’s cooked “the old way” here. I suppose it’s famous for birthing curry as Japanese knows it.

2. Namashirasu Don (Raw Whitebait Rice Bowl) – Whitebait is a term for tiny fish, usually baby anchovy or sardines. In this dish, instead of frying or cooking the whitebait fish, you can get it raw. I bet the texture is pretty awesome.

3. Sanmamen – This is a Yokohama style ramen that’s served in a shoyu broth and covered in stir-fried vegetables.

West And South Coming Next Week


Next week I’ll be doing West and South Japan, covering the second half of this series. Also included will be a printout you can use and take with you to Japan. That way no matter where you go you’ll know what famous foods to look out for and consume. There are a lot of famous foods to be eaten, and it would take the memory of an elephant to remember them all, so why not let us help you out?

Update: Read Part 2 Now!

Anyways, that’s next week, so hopefully you food lovers can wait that long. There are many more delicious things to see.

What looks the best to you? Also, what have you already tried and loved? Let us know in the comments so we can know what to especially look for.



  • Brad Garrett

    I must say, this is a great post and I am definitely looking forward to the next one!
    I will be visiting Moroyama in the Saitama Prefecture this July and I’m glad I get to see the famous foods before hand!

  • Shane Martins

    Looking forward to next week! CHANPON BABY!

  • Alex Napoli

    Okinawa in the next post? Also I’m hungry now.

  • Macca

    I feel bad for only ever having had tama-kon in Yamagata and namashirasu-don in Kanagawa, and gyouza but not in Tochigi, even though I went all over east Japan. :( Now I have a reason to go back, though, so I can seek all of these out.

  • Ashley Riemer

    This is so thorough! Thanks Koichi!

  • ▽回天ソシ (A Tan)△

    Aw man, hungry at the wrong time of night.

    (By the way, Hokkaido’s Uni, Ikura-don should be sea-urchin and salmon roe, not eel!) Haha. Looks like someone was thinking about eel…

  • irina

    I’m soooo hungry right now!!!

  • Vitamin

    Challenge: Eat everything listed above when you’re going to Japan (at least one dish of each prefecture)
    bonus points for: finish the challenge with ALL listed food eaten.
    Post your picture as a proof at your flickr page.

    Achievement Locked: The Real Fugu Lord,
    w/ bonus point: The Essence of Tofu

  • rapchee

    while profoundly drooling, i noticed that Yude Rakkasei and Fukagawa Don look extremely similar (one could say identical), although they don’t sound too similar at all :)

  • Tora.Silver

    Aichi’s miso is off the hook.

  • Ruben

    “So you think you know something about Japanese food ?”
    Read this !

    Great article !

    When you read all of this you realise that what most people consider as “Japanese food” is in reality only a tiny bit, and a lot of the European – Japanese restaurants out there are completely westernised.
    -“Hey I know how to make sushi, I make delicious Japanese food !”
    “Ok, I would like shimotsukare please”
    -” Ehm, what ?”

  • Joel Alexander

    Oh. I’ve had masuzushi, or at least something looking very much like it – I bought it at a train station thinking it was a bento box, but it turned out to be this giant sushi… thing. Came in this pretty fancy bamboo box too. No idea it was trout.

    But… I was in Nagano prefecture at the time…


    Thanks Koichi. I love food trivia.

    Would you ever consider a post on Japanese beers? Hitochino Nest White Ales are $9 to $12 a bottle in my city.


  • Naengmyun redemption <3

    The “Cold Korean Ramen” isn’t a North Korean dish. Rather it’s just Korean. This dish first came out before the seperation of the Koreas. :P But on another note, I’M SO HUNGRY NOW!

  • x_stei

    It’s a good thing I’m eating right now…!
    Beautiful idea! I love it! I miss Japanese food now.

  • Ricardo Caicedo

    Epic post, Koichi! I’d love to try the namashirasu.

  • shiro

    Boy howdy, I can tell you haven’t eaten a lot of this stuff. Well, neither have I, but why describe oroshi udon and leave out the thing it’s named after? Grated daikon, it’s got a kick but it’s delicious.

    Satoimo are not mere potatoes, but rather they are devil potatoes that turn into a horrible slimy mush as soon as you start chewing them. “Simple taste so good” my butt, this one’s a trap.

    And if you’d ever tried Sendai gyutan, you would be RAVING about it. In most of Japan the tongue slices are cut very thin, but in Sendai it’s thick like little pieces of steak. It’s outstanding. Well, as long as you’re not a vegetarian.

    I also can’t believe the polls left out Nagano’s other famous dish, basashi: raw horse sashimi. Well, I guess it just didn’t make it into the top 3.

  • Viet

    Well.. The first couple sentences and paragraphs did say the article is based on research :)

  • Viet

    Where do you live? They are like $3-$4 bucks here :(

  • koichi

    I have had tan from Sendai, to me it’s fine, but nothing I’d rave about… but then again different people usually have different tastes.

    There’s another prefecture that’s more famous for horse sashimi, which is why Nagano doesn’t win out in that regard.


    LOL. Viet, I live in the State Capital of California, Sacramento…T_T

    I lived in Singapore for awhile and they were more, like $10-$12…even in the Japanese grocery stores like Meidi-Ya and Isetan.

  • Ricardo Buijsman

    just stopppp just sttooopppp….. i’m getting hungry :'(

  • Raymond Chuang

    Hold it right there. No mention of miso ramen for famous Hokkaido foods, which was invented in Sapporo around 1965?

  • zoomingjapan

    Haha. What a great idea! ^___^
    You’ve actually taken the time to research the famous food of all 47 prefectures!
    As I’ve been to all those 47 prefectures I have eaten some of that food.

    There are some really awesome dishes out there.
    One of my all-time favorites is the Kabocha Houtou of Yamanashi Prefecture – especially great in cold winter months!

    I’m totally looking forward to part 2 where I should be familiar with almost all of the food as I spent most of the time in those parts of Japan! ^__^

  • Travis Freeman

    Looking forward to next week!! I’m in Kochi which is home to the most delicious of them all….. Katsuo No Tataki!! I could eat this every day. Also…the city I’m in, Tosashimizu, is famous for perayaki which is a really thin version of okonomiyaki but done up Tosa style!!

  • Hannah

    You forgot ogura toast for Aichi! D: I’ve become pretty much addicted to the stuff, but even my friends in nearby Mie think it’s really weird. Went to a branch in Chiba of Nagoya’s famous Komeda Coffee and thought it was funny how many signs they had begging people to try ogura an on their toast. lol Uiro is also really famous, my host father always asks for it!

    We also have tenmusu, but I don’t know much of anyone who’s bothered to try it.

    Shirokuma in Kagoshima was good, but my most favorite Japanese food though is Tonkotsu ramen, originally from Fukuoka. But by far the best tonkotsu restaurant is actually in Chiba. :3

  • Peter

    You translate the very first item (Hokkaido’s “uni ikura-don” as being sea urchin and eel. I don’t think you mean eel.
    Also, starting Shizuoka, you typed “there’s many ways”.

  • orangedude

    So much of this looks so good! Although, to be honest you probably won’t see me eating live fish or salmon roe. I’ve never been a fan of salmon roe…or things that move of their own accord in my mouth… ^_^


    I’m impressed…

  • David

    As something living currently in Fukui I would say that Satoimo no Koroni should be replaced with Sauce Katsu-don. There are many many restaurants that serve it here and if you ask a Fukui resident which foods are most representative of Fukui they would most likely say Sauce Katsu and Oroshi-soba; they’re often served together as a set meal in restaurants. The sauce is a variation of Worchestshite sauce

  • Kiki

    What about those little banana cakes? I don’t remember what they are called… Tokyo bananas? With creamy filling? :)

  • Dharma Mauricio

    Being a vegetarian in Japan must be so saaad! I think I need to learn photosynthesis before I go there…

  • Sam Inman

    Soup curry is huge here in Hokkaido. How did that not make the list?

  • Sam Inman

    I think most Japanese have trouble understanding a vegetarian diet and have meet many who think that you eat a lot of vegetables. Witnessed friend of mine who is vegetarian have this conversation or a variation of it a few times. “So you are vegetarian?” “Yeah, I don’t eat meat.” “Oh, how about chicken?” “No, I don’t eat meat.” “What about fish?” “Some do, but I don’t.” “Sounds unhealthy, I don’t understand it.”

  • Noctis Caelum


  • Aiza Botezatu

    Can’t wait for 大阪!!^-^

  • Jaeger

    Also, if we’re talking about “famous” foods in the prefecture, I would think that Satoimo no Koroni should be replaced with Echizen gani. Without fail, it seems like the two things that people always ask if you’ve eaten when you say you’re living in Fukui are oroshi-soba and Echizen gani.

  • Felix Nelson

    I plan to travel around Japan once I live there and I will eat all of these one day.

  • Alvin Lo

    Koichi this is great. This will be a great guide for the first timers that are going with us on my Japan trip in March. Shared this link on every social media account I have lol. Looking forward to the southern/western places too!

  • CelestialSushi

    So much deliciousness in one post… but wow, you mentioned the Aomori Prefecture Ooma Maguro and all I could think of was this cute little song about tuna:
    And yes, it’s Vocaloid XD

  • Vegamania

    A pretty good list. I will make one suggestion. Gifu has Hida Beef. Which is extremely popular (and expensive) around the region. Keichan is mostly a Gero city thing in the region of Hida.

    Disclaimer: I currently live in Gero, Gifu.

  • Dharma Mauricio

    I get that all the time. People don’t seem to think that chicken and fish are also meat but, oh well, I’m used to it already. What I really should do is get those Shojin Ryouri ingredients and start practicing! My only worries are about where can I eat out when I travel/move to Japan.

  • Shivam

    Being vegetarian in japan was incredibly difficult for me because they put dashi in damn near everything, and bacon in everything else. I ended up cooking a lot of food for myself, and when i went out i stuck to indian and italian restaurants.

  • Shivam

    Surprised you left out Ibaraki-ken’s most famous food, the Natto of Mito!

  • Dharma Mauricio

    Yeah, that’s what I think is going to happen to me. Thanks for sharing your experience!

  • Borqna Iordanova

    thank you for the amazing article Koichi.It was very interesting to read it

  • Fanfan

    J’adore déjà les images et les couleurs !

  • Cody Cocoa-puff

    looking at this is really making me look forward to my excursion im going to have after i graduate. just $6,000 more to save up. Yay!

  • Amelia Rey

    Don’t forget the dolphin meat, slaughtered im Taiji

  • chatdupaf

    wow thanks a lot! I am looking forward to reading about the South and the West, I can’t wait ! :D

  • Craig Tallentire

    Yamanashi really does seem to have come bottom of the barrel. Houto isn';t great. At least you avoided mentioning the horrific horse meat sashimi that is a delicacy here!
    My favourite udon has to be Ise Udon. The sauce just makes it amazing.

  • I’ll Make It Myself!

    Ishikawa represent! Kaga ryori comes from the 加賀藩, the old name for that area of Ishikawa. Kabura zushi is surprisingly good. I didn’t know how to feel about pickled fish and daikon, but it has a really clean taste to it.

  • Meredith Peruzzi

    Hey there, this link might be helpful to you. It was written for someone with food allergies, but it also mentions vegetarianism and applies well! I am living in Japan for one year, and took a hiatus from 18 years of vegetarianism while living here. It’s just that damn hard! I’ll be returning to the US and vegetarianism soon, and I feel much better about it…I just never stopped feeling funny about eating meat.

  • Dharma Mauricio

    Thanks! I’m scared of going there and having to eat meat to live. I’ve been a vegetarian since I was born (seriously) so eating meat is a complete no-no for me.

  • Lauren Summers Feels

    thank you for sharing! おなかがすきました!