Taste of Wagyu; Matsusaka, Omi and Hida

Sweet, tender, juicy, melt-in-the-mouth; no written words are enough to explain the supreme taste of Wagyu, the Japanese super-beef.

While Kobe Beef has pioneered the export of Japanese beef and is probably the most well-known brand of Wagyu, the Central Japan area offers three prominent Wagyu brands that parallel Kobe in quality; Matsusaka, Omi and Hida. The secret of Wagyu lies in its fat. The Wagyu meat contains lots of unsaturated fat with a very low melting point, some as low as thirteen degrees Celsius, which is less than half as low as regular beef. This fat does not come as white streaks running through the meat, but is evenly distributed, like the pattern of marble. The result is a meat that literally dissolves and releases its rich flavor in the mouth.

Matsusaka Beef comes from Mie Prefecture, Omi Beef from Shiga Prefecture, and Hida Beef from Gifu Prefecture. Try it as a steak, Sukiyaki or Shabushabu, it will undoubtedly be a bliss on the taste buds.

English Language Site:

http://www.travel.pref.mie.lg.jp/en/recommend/matsusakabeef.shtm

http://www.oumiushi.com/en/

http://www.hida.jp/english/localspeciality/food/4000195.html

Toyokawa Inari

Toyokawa Inari is a temple dedicated to the god of business and her messenger fox.

This temple was established almost six hundred years ago, and the complex is full of authentic traditional buildings. Worshippers donate a stone statue of fox when their wishes are fulfilled.

English Language Site:

https://www.aichi-now.jp/en/spots/detail/44/

Asaichi; Bustling Morning Markets

Asaichi, the morning market, has long been a feature of rural Japan. While most of them have not survived to this date, two of the remaining few are held in the Central Japan area. One of them is in Wajima, Ishikawa Prefecture. With two hundred stalls packed into a 360 meter (a quarter mile) stretch of the street, it is regarded as the best morning market in Japan. Since Wajima is a fishing port, seafood can be found at virtually every stall. One can buy fresh fish just off the boat and have it made into mouthwatering sashimi, or get a steamed abalone sliced up to go, for later enjoyment. In stark contrast to Wajima, the morning market in Takayama, Gifu Prefecture is dominated by farm produce. Almost all of the fruits and vegetables found there are locally grown, some of them organic. Different produce like tomatoes, peaches, grapes, pears, apples and persimmons occupy the stalls according to the seasons.

Wajima

Opening Hours: 8:00am to noon. Closed on second and fourth Wednesday every month and Jan 1-3.

https://www.hot-ishikawa.jp/english/kanko/20022.html

Note: Some market stalls offer to prepare the purchased fish, which may then be taken into accommodating restaurants to be enjoyed with the food there. Other restaurants may also agree to prepare fish purchased and brought to them.

Takayama

Opening Hours: 7:00am to noon from April to November and 8:00am to noon from December to March.
Open every day. The market is held at two different, but close locations.

http://www.hida.jp/english/touristattractions/takayamacity/historyandculture/4000162.html

Travel Tips

The Shinkansen is a simpler and smarter way to travel between Tokyo and the Central Japan area. It only takes one hour and half to reach Nagoya from Tokyo by the bullet train, without the hassle of a security check, while enjoying a magnificent view of Mt. Fuji from a seat on the right-hand side of the car. JR-Central offers a free app to book and manage your Shinkansen ticket, handy for securing the best seat.

Tokaido Sanyo Shinkansen Reservation App

  • A must-have free App for leisure and business travelers to Japan!
  • This App allows you to enjoy your travels on the “Golden Route” connecting Tokyo,

Mt. Fuji, Nagoya, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima, Hakata and moe!

For more info: https://shinkansen-reservation.jp

For more information of the region, go to:

https://en.go-centraljapan.jp/index.html

https://shoryudo.go-centraljapan.jp/en/index.html

https://www.aichi-now.jp/en/omotenashi/

https://foreign.info-toyama.com/en/

http://www.hot-ishikawa.jp/english/

http://www.fuku-e.com/lang/english/

http://www.go-nagano.net/

https://shizuoka-guide.com/english/

http://www.travel.pref.mie.lg.jp/en/index.shtm

https://en.biwako-visitors.jp/