We’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for coming to our Eat-Japan events at HYPER JAPAN 2013. Eat-Japan is passionate about educating the UK public about how delicious and varied Japanese food can be, and it’s always a pleasure to see so many people enjoying and getting excited about discovering new flavours from East Asia. Hundreds of visitors got involved in sampling and voting for their favourites in the Sushi Awards and Sake Experience, and we are delighted to announce the winners here.
The Sushi Awards, sponsored by Kikkoman, S&B and Yutaka, saw five UK based Japanese restaurants battling out to see whose unique sushi creation would be the people’s favourite.
This year’s proud winner was Eat Tokyo Group Head Chef Yoshiro Motohashi, with his sublimely delicious Tokyo Special Roll.
The Eat Tokyo Group has five branches across London, and a reputation as one of the city’s most formidable Japanese chains. Drawing on over 40 years’ experience in the catering trade in Tokyo, the Group offers a wide range of authentic Japanese dishes including freshly prepared sushi, bento boxes, and an izakaya menu. What’s more, the Group is committed to doing it all at prices that defy the stereotype that quality Japanese food has to hit the pocket hard.
The group’s appreciation of what the UK public will admire in Japanese food is really evident in the sumptuous Tokyo Special. This bold and colourful roll was inspired by dynamic and cosmopolitan Tokyo. Eel, prawn and avocado are layered in perfectly cooked Yutaka Premium Sushi Rice then double-wrapped in seared salmon and yellowtail. The roll is then lightly flamed before being smothered in tobiko, wasabi tobiko, and S&B Wasabi Sauce. A tsume glaze made with Kikkoman Soy Sauce provides sweetness and a rich umami punch. The soft salmon melts into creamy avocado, while the prawn and eel give the roll bite, followed by a whisper of wasabi. A truly indulgent mouthful of Tokyo.
The four runners up were all also very popular with the HYPER JAPAN tasters. The restaurants and their creations were as follows;
Sea Bass Maki with Crispy and Spicy Twist by Dariusz Burdzinski, Feng Sushi
Samurai by Tomokazu Matsuya, SO Restaurant
Wagyu Beef Teriyaki Roll by Sadayuki Okamoto, Ichi Sushi and Sashimi Bar
Emperor’s Feast by Sandy Beltran, Tsunami
The Sake Experience 2013
The Eat-Japan Sake Experience, Europe’s biggest public tasting event for sake, where you can try, learn, buy, and vote as you enjoy Japan’s most traditional tipple, returned once again for HYPER JAPAN 2013. This year's event featured 11 breweries, who brought with them 27 different sakes and fruit based liqueurs.
We’re delighted to announce that 800 visitors participated in this event, voting for their favourite sakes in four different categories. The results were as follows.
Your overall favourite sake.
Perfect Sake for British Summer:
The sake you would most like to enjoy in the summertime.
Best Match with British Food:
The sake you would most like to pair with British cuisine
Best Handcrafted Sake:
The most interesting handcrafted sake
Click here for the full line-up.
For most people in the UK, Japanese cuisine used to equal nothing but sushi. But more diverse dishes have now become mainstream favourites, and dishes such as katsu curry are now a staple for almost every Japanese food chain in the UK. Sake has also become an increasingly common sight on restaurant menus and shop shelves. This summer, ‘ TASTE JAPAN' , taking place at HYPER JAPAN 2013 will offer you the chance to experience the varied and unique flavours of Japan. At TASTE JAPAN , visitors can taste and learn easy and delicious Japanese recipes, as well as enjoy free samples of Japanese tea, sake and other alcohol from a special pop-up bar. Take your palate on an exciting journey to the east this summer and expand your everyday culinary horizons!
Click here for the TASTE JAPAN recipe leaflet.
*Please note that you will require a HYPER JAPAN 2013 ticket to enter TASTE JAPAN .p
Food & Drink Demonstrations (Click here for PDF Timetable)
It is now easier than ever to get Japanese ingredients such as sushi rice, soy sauce, mirin, miso, rice vinegar, soba noodles, nori, tofu, shirataki, and curry sauce mix in the UK, not just in specialist stores, but also in leading supermarkets. Abundant in vegetarian friendly vegetable based products and immunity boosting tofu, shirataki and other fermented foods, as well as ingredients which can be combined to perfectly draw out complex umami flavours, creating immensely satisfying tastes which reduce the need for any additional salt, Japanese food is incredibly healthy. TASTE JAPAN cooking demonstrations will introduce you to Japanese ingredients such as these which you can easily use to make super nutritious food home. Make sure to stop by and pick up your complimentary recipe and supplier leaflet (Click here to download PDF leaflet).
Japanese food expert Atsuko Ikeda will be demonstrating a simple katsu curry recipe to cook at home, Japanese style rice burgers for picnics and a menu centred on healthy Japanese ingredients. Two talented chefs from Sozai - the first cooking school in the UK dedicated to authentic Japanese food- will teach you how to make perfect sushi. Yuki Gomi will teach you Classic Seafood Futo Maki Roll, from her latest recipe book ‘Sushi at Home’, and Tina Turner’s former personal chef Akemi Yokoyama will be showing you how to make a cute fish-shaped pressed sushi.
In addition, Natsuki Kikuya will be showing you how to turn your home into a Japanese izakaya pub with her easy sake and nibbles ideas, and a professional bartender, Niya Martin from Soho's Mizuwari Bar will lead a Japanese cocktail master class, showing you how to make drinks perfect for jazzing up your party drink repertoire. In addition, there will be lectures by Honami Matsumoto from Hedonism Wine and free samples of globally renowned Japanese whisky, which has beaten out western counterparts in international contests, and increasingly famous Japanese wine. Made from distinctive Japanese grapes, this wine is neither Cabernet Sauvignon nor Merlot, but something entirely unique which is currently capturing the attention of connoisseurs around the globe.
Japanese Bar and Tea Station (Click here for PDF Timetable)
Enjoy alternate tasting sessions of Japanese teas and Japanese alcoholic drinks at our special pop-up Japanese Bar and Tea Station .
Bursting with beneficial nutrition, Japanese tea is packed with naturally occurring constituents like catechin and vitamin C, as well as deep, interesting flavours that draw acclaim from gourmets around the world.
Sake has become incredibly popular in the UK- but there are also many other varieties of alcohol from Japan to be enjoyed, including shochu, a clear spirit made from ingredients such as rice, barley, or sweet potatoes, and Japanese beer. Japanese whisky and wine are also becoming more widely consumed.
Whilst you may have seen many of the drinks on offer in UK stores, chances are that you bypassed them for more traditional choices. Now's your chance to them al l-absolutely free of charge- and discover your new favourite Japanese drink.
Sake Cocktail Shake-up
On the afternoon of Sunday 28 th July , three skilled mixologists will be introducing their original sake based cocktail creations on the HYPER JAPAN Main Stage. These pro bartenders will mix their drinks up in front of HYPER JAPAN visitors, who will then have the fun task of sampling all three and voting for the cocktail which they think best brings out the flavour of the Japanese sake. Our three bartenders will be; Ryu Okada, a founder of mobile bar company Kampai Cocktails, Alessandro Palumbo, Bar Manager of popular ramen bar Bone Daddies and newly opening izakaya inspired Flesh and Buns, and Niya Martin from Mizuwari Bar- the UK's first dedicated Japanese Whisky bar.
*Please note that you will require a HYPER JAPAN ticket to enter TASTE JAPAN .
As the UK’s biggest celebration of Japanese culture and cuisine, HYPE R JAPAN prides itself on bringing the best of traditional and contemporary Japan to London. Coming to Earls Court from 26- 28 July, HYPER JAPAN 2013 promises to be bigger and better than ever. Along with a mouth watering array of Japanese food and drink at Eat Japan 2013, the event will feature modern Japanese entertainment such as manga, anime and cinema, fashion and beauty, technology, music, and art, as well as refined traditional culture, travel information, and more. Read on for a just a small taste of what’s on offer from Eat-Japan at HYPER JAPAN 2013.
The Eat-Japan Sushi Awards are back again for HYPER JAPAN 2013 with five Japanese restaurants in the UK battling it out to win Sushi of the Year. This is your chance to taste unique sushi creations from some of the leading sushi chefs in the country, and ultimately have your say in who is crowned Sushi Roll Champion of 2013. You’ll also have the chance to see how real professionals go about making world class sushi- guaranteeing an amazing culinary experience, not available anywhere else.
The Eat-Japan Sake Experience 2013 is a Japanese sake event unparalleled in scale. In addition to increasing awareness, the Sake Experience 2013 will give participants the opportunity to taste many diverse varieties of drinks, learning about the different temperatures and ways in which sake can be enjoyed. Ticket holders can also meet sake brewers, attend mini-seminars from a sake sommelier, and participate in polls and prize draws. Many sakes on offer for sampling can also be purchased by attendees at the event.
HYPER JAPAN will be once again hosting a variety of stalls selling Japanese food, hot and cold alcoholic and soft drinks, teas, candy, ingredients, snacks, sweet treats, and more. Offerings will range from tempting street food like okonomiyaki and ramen noodles, as well as super healthy blends of green tea, to exquisite sushi, premium sake, and traditional liqueurs from Japan. In addition to freshly made food, visitors will be able to take home candies, cakes, and snacks, as well as Japanese ingredients and cooking supplies.
Eat-Japan 2013 will be hosting three days of exciting expert led demonstrations on Japanese cooking and drink on the main stage. These demonstrations will both entertain and educate, inspiring you to create your own Japan inspired culinary masterpieces. In past events, featured demonstrators in the Eat-Japan area have encompassed a wide range of Japanese culinary fields, ranging from sake sommeliers to desert chefs and sushi masters, including Japanese drinks expert Natsuki Kikuya and award winning chocolatier William Curley, and this year’s event promises to be equally diverse. Targeted at everyone from accomplished cooks and interested amateurs, Eat-Japan 2013 will show you how to get the very best out of Japanese ingredients.
More people than ever are choosing sake with their meals at Japanese restaurants here in the UK. But what’s happening in Tokyo, where sake has been a staple choice since time immemorial. We’ve asked Marie Chiba, bartender/sake sommelier at Nihonshu Stand Moto, a standing-room-only sake bar slap-bang in the middle of Shinjuku, Tokyo, to update us on what’s hotting up the sake scene in Japan’s capital. Nihonshu Stand Moto is a favourite haunt of brewers and sake industry workers, so it’s a great place to check out if you’re ever in Tokyo—ask for Marie and she’ll show you what’s what.
Japas, essentially a Japanese version of tapas, was invented by Atsuko Ikeda, the founder of Atsuko's Kitchen. A crowd favourite at HYPER JAPAN, Atsuko, who presented the ‘Japanese style dishes at home' demonstration at HYPER JAPAN 2012 Spring, will be once again returning to the Christmas event, where she will show you how to prepare a delicious selection of Japas dishes to wow your friends and family. With Atsuko's help, you'll be able to wow your friends and family with exquisite Japanese nibbles all the way through the festive season!
There are lots of festivals, known as matsuri, around Japan as summer turns to autumn. Whilst are many different kinds of matsuri, the one most enjoyable aspect is always Japanese street food, known as yatai stalls.
Matsuri also feature entertainments like yo-yo balloons and shooting games, but yatai stalls are decisively the most popular attractions.
Below are the results of a poll by Japan’s famous music chart list compiler Oricon on the most popular yatai foods:
1.Takoyaki (fried octopus)
3.Kakigori (shaved ice)
7.Jyaga butter (jacket potato with butter)
10.Yaki ika (grilled squid)
Summer-the best season to do something fun; outings, sports, festivals, and travelling to make the most of the lovely weather. But that (fingers crossed) intense heat can cause fatigue and make you feel lethargic. Take a leaf out of the athletes' book and optimise your diet for summer--although you probably won't have to be quite as strict as them.
When faced with the variety and diversity of Japanese food and drink, it's nice to have a bit of expert advice to guide you through. That's why we've been reading the blogs of some of the leading Japanese food and drink professionals in the UK today.
Whether you want to know more about the world of rice wine, discover how an award-winning Japanese chef engages with UK suppliers, or be inspired by musings on the possibilities of Japanese cooking, there's a blog out there for you. Discover something new about Japanese cuisine—go beyond the menu into the kitchen, the brewery, the mind of the chef! Here are three of our favourite blogs from three of our favourite UK-based Japanese food and drink experts
For over a thousand years the Japanese have been enjoying a drink that epitomises the warmth and zest of the season. Whether in a fruity cocktail or on the rocks, for a touch of sunshine in a glass, umeshu is well worth getting to know.
Golden Week has arrived and with it, anticipation of the year's first tea harvest as blue skies and vibrant, lush fields welcome dancing streamers of colourful carp to play. The crowded cities of Japan meanwhile heave a collective sigh, bidding farewell to salary men and women, as packed trains whisk them home to pastures green and fresh.
Discover the secrets of this year's explosive Sushi of the Year, Dragon Volcano, and a little more about the chef and restaurant behind it.
HYPER JAPAN Spring 2012 welcomed a whole host of foodies to the Taste Discovery Zone, sponsored by Kikkoman and S&B, eager to learn more about how to create simple, authentic, Japanese style dishes at home. The ever-affable Atsuko Ikeda was back again this year, with sessions introducing us to yaki udon and wasabi cream, whilst newcomer to the Eat-Japan Food Court Elsa Gleeson took on the dessert menu. For all things sake, Natsuki Kikuya, Eat-Japan’s Executive Sommelier and curator of the Sake Awards, enlightened us with her informative seminars on the delights of Japan’s national drink.
Sushi, once a bona fide Japanese concept, has gone global. The beauty of its simplicity is providing the basis for a plethora of imaginative culinary adventures and delights. Whether from the seasoned professional, keen cook or novice, the re-invention of sushi has begun.
Above: Varieties of sushi from late Edo / early Meiji period (based on printings by Gyokusho Kawabata: with thanks to Mizkan Group Co., Ltd.)
Sake is the quintessential drink of celebration and commemoration in Japan, and will have been raised in many a toast during the party season by friends and family throughout the land in a wish to bestow health and harmony in the coming year.
The skies are clouding over, there’s a chill in the air, and cashmere jumpers are flooding the high street, it can only mean one thing; it's time for some soul food. Get ready to warm your heart and nourish your day, Japanese style.
Seaweed, it's everywhere. For an island nation that loves its seafood it's no surprise that some of Japan's most popular dishes, from sushi to miso, use one form or another of these sea growing vegetables.
Late autumn sees the preparation of pickles, the unsung heroes of practically every Japanese meal. Pickles can always be depended on to provide that sweet tang with a bowl of rice, a satisfying crunch with your ramen, and a sweet palate-cleansing pause as the sushi dishes roll in.
From deep purple hues to vibrant greens, oranges and yellows, pickles make for a beautifully rich addition to a meal in both colour and taste. Walk through any market in Japan and you will see the huge variety of pickled vegetables on offer. Carrot, cucumber, aubergine, radish, onion and ginger, the list goes on as Japanese cuisine continues to add texture and vibrancy to its repertoire, in the form of the humble pickle.
Japanese cuisine loves the seasons.
Whether it's finding local fresh bamboo shoots in the spring to add to a bowl of steaming rice, or throwing some daikon into a stew to keep warm in the winter months, there is always a seasonal twist to be found in the Japanese larder. What remains faithful and dear to all however, and always ready and waiting in the cupboards, is that most essential of ingredients to many a dish; rice.
Japan’s long, hot summer can cause fatigue and lose of appetite – known as natsu-bate. But it also means delicious dishes, designed to be reviving, vitamin-laden, flavour-packed, and simple to make in the summer evenings. Okay, it’s not quite as hot and humid here in the UK, but that doesn’t mean we can’t try the recipes out.
HYPER JAPAN 2011 hosted the Sushi Awards 2011: UK Sushi Roll Championship, a UK-only version of the renowned Sushi Awards created especially for HYPER JAPAN and sponsored by KIKKOMAN and Tsuno Foods! The Awards celebrated rolled sushi, but you can find out about the many different types of sushi here.
SUSHI: A MANY-SPLENDOURED DISH
Sushi’s not really a Japanese word anymore. It’s one of those rarest things – a term that’s the same in every language in the world. So whether you’re in Tokyo, Tobago or Turin, when you want vinegared rice topped with raw fish, you ask for sushi. That kind of globality is limited to very few foods: sushi is joining the ‘elite’ ranks hamburger here. Still, sushi is still a quite general term and not much help when you want to order specifics. So to make things a little easier, here’s a quick guide to the various kinds of (sub category) sushi that make up the term sushi. Once you've brushed up on the various types of sushi, remember to get your ticket to the Sushi Awards 2011 and try out the maki sushi, the most popular type in the UK right now.
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