Sunday, November 18, 2012

Nagoya, Japan: What to Eat

When visiting Nagoya eating Hitsumabushi is a must. This is a famous dish in Nagoya and if you like eel, or are open to trying eel (which I highly recommend you do), then you should eat Hitsumabushi. You have to eat  (well, you don't HAVE to, but this is the way the restaurants recommend you eat Hitsumabushi) in 3 steps.

First, you eat the first third simply, the way it arrived in front of you.

Second, you eat another third with the dried seaweed and wasabi that is provided.

Third, you eat the last portion by pouring soup over the eel and rice to make ochazuke.

Oh it's so delicious! Although, I have to admit my favorite is the second step....I tend to skip the third step, but don't tell anyone (Shhh!). For the restaurant link please see the last photo.

If you are in the mood for some cake then I recommend A La Campagne. It is located on the basement floor of the Mitsukoshi department store, next to the escalators that connect the Mitsukoshi department store and the LaChic department store.

If you aren't in Nagoya then don't worry they have many locations! Several in Tokyo, a few in Kobe and a couple in Osaka as well. I will warn you that the site is in Japanese, so I hope you can decipher the address or ask someone to help you (Hotel staff maybe?)

The atmosphere is very cozy and the display case will make your mouth water. I pass by this cafe almost daily after work (because it is a short cut to my train station and because I like to torture myself, apparently).

The top photo is of their chestnut cake which is only available during the chestnut season (Autumn) in Japan. The second photo is a mousse like cake, a very creamy, whipped cheese cake. It was so fluffy and just melts in your mouth. They tend to rotate the types of cake they make each day, but they usually have the popular ones available.

Another thing to remember is that many of the cakes are available by season only. Which means you can enjoy the fruits that are in season! If you liked "Qui fait bonne" which has disappeared from the Matsuzakaya department store in Nagoya (because of H&M, yay!) this is a good replacement for that cake shop.

Here is a full view of what the Hitsumabushi set looks like. I ordered the regular size which is enough for me, but if you really enjoy food then you can order the larger size.

This restaurant is located in the Gas Building on the basement floor. You go down the fancy looking staircase and go straight down the hall and you will see this restaurant on your left. It is called Shirakawa and it is one of the famous places to eat Hitsumabushi.