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comment by zebra2
zebra2  ·  609 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Trip report: Japan (1 year late)

The kaiseki was challenging because it had a lot of items that were totally unfamiliar to my (or the American) palate. I'm pretty good with most things, but shellfish/seafood is where it gets spotty for me.

The sea snail thing (center in the second to last photo) was probably the most unusual for me, but I went for it. It was kinda grainy in texture, not super appealing to look at, and tasted kinda briny and unremarkable.

Every dinner came with a fresh sashimi plate, some kind of meat/seafood that goes on the can burner on the side, a hot pot soup, and a rice dish (with the wooden top) that starts uncooked and cooks throughout the meal.

There was even a second course of fish/soup that came after all the stuff on the table was cleared. One of the soups had a ball of intestines(?) that was wound up like a rubber band ball. That one I couldn't really stomach.

Overall everything was amazing food wise. Aside from the breakfasts, there was always some item on there I couldn't quite handle.

Service was fantastic; we had a person that would come out to set up the whole meal and tea and all that. They would also come to bring out the bedding on the floor. The whole thing was very serene.

The bath houses were nice. Very hot. You can't really spend that much time in one. There were several in the area, each with a different theme/specialty. One was wooden, one was "cave style" one was outdoors, etc.

elizabeth  ·  608 days ago  ·  link  ·  

This sounds like such an enriching experience! Japanese food is delicious, but I find the relation to texture in Asian countries to be very different. I had a couple surprises buying snacks I’ve never seen, expecting them to be salty because of the texture/ingredients and they turn out sweet - or vice versa.

I feel there’s also a lot of different jelly-like textures not too common in the West. Always fun to experiment!

OftenBen  ·  609 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Can I say that I absolutely LOVE hearing people describe times when they decided to push their own boundaries? Go outside their comfort zones?