Zen in Space…

I have not been able to find a lot of information about this in English, and my Japanese is not good enough to decipher technical writing, however I thought this was very interesting, and I have tried to fill in the blanks with some research. Daigo-Ji Temple in Fushimi, in Kyoto, is a very, very … Continue reading Zen in Space…

Yokoso – Welcome to Japan in Melbourne?

The official bright yellow banner for the Yosoko Festival in Melbourne. Saying experience Japanese food and culture in the heart of the City of Yarra.

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 … Continue reading Yokoso – Welcome to Japan in Melbourne?

Ukiyo-e, a picture of Japanese art history

A framed print of an Utagawa Kunisada (Toyokuni III) ukiyo-e triptych depicting a scene from a kabuki performance with a woman and two men, one with a sword and shield and the other hiding behind a screen.

When I started travelling to Japan, I knew precious little about Japanese art. Despite studying art and art history through school and at university, my exposure to Asian art in general was very limited. My knowledge of ukiyo-e, woodblock printing, was limited to famous images such as Hokusai's The Great Wave (actually called Under the … Continue reading Ukiyo-e, a picture of Japanese art history

The Enduring Exploits of Super Sake Boy and Nihonshu Girl

A pergola and side garden with Japanese ferns, maple trees and hanging baskets. There are hops trailing to the pergola and hanging baskets on the pergola. This is a Japanese inspired garden in Ferny Creek, Melbourne.

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 … Continue reading The Enduring Exploits of Super Sake Boy and Nihonshu Girl

Uniquely Japanese- Yoshoku 洋食

Yoshoku is Japanese western style cooking. In my experience, every dish that the Japanese adopt and alter ends up being more delicious than the dish they started with. Yoshoku translates literally as "Western style cuisine", as opposed to Washoku 和食 which translates to Japanese style cuisine. During the Meiji period (1868-1912) after more than 200 … Continue reading Uniquely Japanese- Yoshoku 洋食

Americanism- why the Japanese do American better than the Americans??

When travelling in Japan it is hard not to notice the influence of American culture and how the Japanese have embraced the culture to such an extent that it has become very much a part of Japanese culture. The two cultures have become intertwined in such a way as to be inextricable from each other. … Continue reading Americanism- why the Japanese do American better than the Americans??

Uniquely Japanese- Komorebi 木漏れ日

I started this blog a long time ago. I have been waiting for the perfect photo for it. Finally, the other morning, I got my photo. When you read the meaning of the word, you will understand why this has taken some time to achieve. "The interplay between light and leaves when sunlight shines through … Continue reading Uniquely Japanese- Komorebi 木漏れ日

Aliens, Hot Wheels and Blues loving Koji- Mioya Shuzo

The eighth session of Sake Mistress Simone's Taste with the Toji on-line sake events found us in Ishikawa at Mioya Shuzo, with Kuramoto (president) Miho Fujita, and Toji, Toshi Yokomichi. I am reasonably sure when Miho-san was explaining the story of how she became president I was the only participant in the session that completely … Continue reading Aliens, Hot Wheels and Blues loving Koji- Mioya Shuzo

Sake By The Sea

On the 1st June our Taste with the Toji Session 5, hosted by the lovely Sake Mistress, Simone, took us to the idyllic seaside town of Ine, in the north of Kyoto Prefecture, to a wonderful quirky brewery as unique and as lovely as the Toji who makes the sake there. Mukai Shuzo has been … Continue reading Sake By The Sea

Guesthouse Soi- My Home Away From Home

My first time travelling in Japan was just over five years ago. We travelled for a month and I tried to see as much as I could. We stayed in Tokyo, Osaka, Hiroshima, Kamakura and had booked to stay in Hakuba. We also stayed in Kyoto. For only four short days. We had loved Tokyo, … Continue reading Guesthouse Soi- My Home Away From Home