Ukiyo, a mystical story experience.

Last night Super Sake Boy and I had the most mystical experience in a Japanese garden, in another realm. It was an exciting and interactive experience which felt like we had been transported into a real-life RPG (role play game) or a Studio Ghibli movie. Imagine playing a video game, where you have missions, on…

Yokoso – Welcome to Japan in Melbourne?

Yokoso, ようこそ, means “welcome” in Japanese. The Sunday before last, the 17th January, we enjoyed being welcomed to “Japan in Melbourne”. The City of Yarra, through a grant scheme, had enabled a group of Japanese restaurants, musicians, dancers and market stall holders, (and Dylan, from Chotto Motto’s mum) to create an excellent opportunity for Melbournians…

The Enduring Exploits of Super Sake Boy and Nihonshu Girl

It has been nearly a year since COVID put a big, fat STOP sign on nearly all international travel. Being obsessed Japanophiles, Super Sake Boy and I have tried to take the travel ban graciously, while feeding our need for Japanese food, sake, culture and connection with the language. We were last in Japan in…

RAKU- A sublime dining experience.

When I looked up “best Japanese restaurant” in Canberra, Raku was the obvious front runner, with many people extolling its virtues. I always look up the best local Japanese when we travel, as we love eating Japanese food and I am always interested to see how other places do it differently. We are lucky in…

Love in the Time of Coronavirus… or The Quiet Ryokan

Twenty five days ago I wrote a blog about our impending trip to Japan. It feels like a year ago. Needless to say our plans have been completely disbanded and even if we wanted to leave the country, we could not. I am somewhat relieved we were not stuck in a difficult situation of being…

Chotto Motto, a little more…..

Walking through the door at Chotto Motto is like stepping through a time tunnel. An incredible space that looks like it is straight out of Tokyo in the Showa Era, maybe circa 1975? There is Ultra-man, Godzilla and retro pop-culture everywhere you look. So many Peko-chan and Anpanman, a haven for lovers of Japanese collectables….

Tamura Sake Bar- A Haven in Fitzroy

Earlier this year, a wonderful little bar opened near the top end of Gertrude Street in Fitzroy. Dark and mysterious, but cleverly illuminated with a welcoming glow from inside, Tamura Sake Bar has all the wonderful things a sake bar in Japan has, namely great sake, great food and wonderfully generous hospitality, here in Melbourne….

Japan Fan in New York

Last week I was lucky enough to spend four days in New York on the way home from visiting relatives in Canada. What a crazy city. I am used to busy, I travel to Tokyo a bit, but this was different. Manhattan is so condensed and the buildings are so tall, it was a little…

Hibiki…..Echoes of Tokyo in Camberwell

When I looked up Hibiki in my Japanese translator the translation was sound, but more accurately echo or reverberation. I am not sure if that is what the owners of Hibiki in Melbourne were alluding to, but as soon as I read it, it resonated. Sitting in this little cafe in Toorak Rd in Camberwell,…