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Recommended cooking classes in Kyoto or Osaka? Preferably lunch time/afternoon classes.

I'm the other person that booked with tsg20, and we both really loved the class with Emi at Uzuki cooking class. It was just the two of us and Emi, and lasted about 3.5 hours for 5000 yen each, for four dishes which we helped cook and then ate (which was easily enough for an early dinner)

She was well prepared with printed out recipes for each of us, a little glossary of Japanese vegetables, and some of the grunt-work kitchen prep done in advance. It felt like a good balance of hands-on, and also her moving things along if/when it felt like things were too slow.

I was a bit nervous in advance because I'm rubbish at small talk at the best of times, and trying to make conversation with someone that isn't a native speaker for 3 hours sounds like torture. But it wasn't like that at all. She was happy to talk to us about the dishes, asked a few questions, but also seemed fine when there was a lull in conversation while we each got on with our bits of cooking. Basically not awkward at all.

Our four vegetarian dishes were gorgeous and delicious, and totally unlike anything I'd made before. I would definitely recommend the school. It felt like a bit of a bargain, considering that's what we paid for a 6 or 7 course veg meal at a few temples, but without learning to do it as well.

I asked, and she also does classes focused on meat, fish, or even desserts. Definitely would check in to see if she's available when you're there.

Sep 13, 2014
lettezilla in Japan

Veg-friendly Tokyo/Kyoto + Itinerary: help fill in some blanks?

Thank you, that's very helpful. Their website doesn't translate well automatically using a browser and I'm pretty hopeless reading Japanese.

Aug 26, 2014
lettezilla in Japan

Veg-friendly Tokyo/Kyoto + Itinerary: help fill in some blanks?

After reading loads of Chowhound threads, blog posts and restaurant reviews, here's our food itinerary for a two-week trip in early September.

I'm a vegetarian and am planning on ignoring dashi where it's unavoidable, but would prefer true vegetarian where possible. We've got bookings at the below, but could use some help filling in some gaps if anyone has any suggestions!

Matsugen Soba (lunch)
Fukamachi tempura (lunch)
Itasoba Kaoriya (dinner)
Sorano tofu (dinner)
Kondo tempura (lunch)
Edo Soba Hosokawa at Ryogoku (dinner)
Sushi Kanesaka in Ginza (husband going alone for lunch)

Shoraian (lunch)
Okutan tofu (lunch)
Tosuiro Gion tofu (dinner)
Shigetsu inside Tenyu-ji Temple (lunch)
Omen nippon udon noodles (dinner)
Kyoto Uzuki cooking school (late lunch)

Here are my questions:
First day in Tokyo follows long trip from the UK, and we get in late afternoon. We're staying at the Park Hyatt and I'm anticipating we'll be too zonked to want to venture far afield. I can see there are a load of restaurants in our building, any recommendations for any one in particular? Hotel restaurant prices are a bit expensive for us, most likely (we're staying on points, not paying rack rates)

One day we'd like to try ramen. I understand there is a purely vegan ramen place at T's TanTan in Tokyo Station, but then my (not veg) husband is missing out on the "good stuff". I've heard that Chabuton has a veg option and thought that might be a good compromise? But I'm having a hard time figuring out locations from their website, any suggestions on the nearest to Shinjuku?

Other things we still need:
--Lunch in Osaka (probably trying find somewhere I can do a mostly vegetarian okonomoyaki, perhaps Muzuno in Dotonbori?
)--Lunch in Magome, Kiso Valley (can't find any food info about the town at all, we'll arrive in time for lunch and then walk to Tsumago for overnight and dinner)
--Food in Hakone. We're staying at the Hyatt up in Gora, and I believe the food options aren't great around there. I thought we could have lunch somewhere when we arrive at the station from the Kiso Valley, and then grab bento or snacks to have as a light dinner in our hotel room. But have failed to find anything aside from a fleeting recommendation for a bakery near the station, so any suggestions would be welcome.

Thanks in advance!

Aug 25, 2014
lettezilla in Japan

Seafood Shacks/Fried Clams vaguely near Cape Cod?

Hi all,

My in-laws are visiting from France, and are driving from Boston to New York, with a stay in Rehoboth, MA along the way. They love seafood, and might dip into Cape Cod, especially if there's a great meal along the way.

This thread looked really helpful
But is (scarily) more than a decade old, so I have no idea if those places are still good options.

They're doing this this weekend, which I also assume is off-season for a lot of places. Any suggestions for must-hit seafood places along the way would be very welcome!

Tamarind Bay, I don't get it

i just wanted to feed back on our meal on friday. we phoned that afternoon to make a reservation, and were able to get the time we wanted with no problem. glad we did as people were waiting for tables.

we decided to share everything, and got 2 starters, 3 mains, rice and a bread basket for 4 people. two glasses of wine and one beer, total was right around $100 including tip. we all enjoyed the food-- the starters didn't seem like great value, two air-filled puffs were $9, but cheezy bits were tasty. the long-soaked lentils were a tad spicy for me (i'm a wuss), but the other three enjoyed, and i loved the spices used in the chickpeas. also had the tandoori cooked cheese, which was good but not amazing. bread was fresh and great. the amount of food was perfect, there was a tiny bit left over, and everyone was full.

overall, it was the best indian food i've had in the US. not greasy, creative spices, lots of options. that said, it was priced at a higher point that i would expect for typical indian, so i would agree with the poster above who said to think of it as almost fine dining rather than indian.

service was busy but friendly and helpful, by the way. we'll probably go back and not bother with drinks at all, and just get a few key things.

Tamarind Bay, I don't get it

thank you peregrine and sara, that should really help us decide whether to try it now or save it for a fancier evening.

Tamarind Bay, I don't get it

just reading through this older thread as we've recently moved here and are considering trying out tamarind bay. one thing i'm having a hard time establishing is how expensive it is-- the online menu doesn't have prices, they don't have a menu posted outside, and i've seen everything from "reasonable" to "splurge" used to describe it. if anyone could tell me the cost of an average main and/or meal for two, i would greatly appreciate it.

Tasting Menu Dinner

We were just checking out the menus at Upstairs on the Square in Cambridge, they have a nice looking tasting menu and vegetarian tasting menu as well.

Weekday Brunch Near MIT?

I've heard good things about Brookline Lunch, just around the corner from the Middle East near Central Square. Sounds like a diner-y place, decent greasy spoon. But haven't been yet (the one day I walked down there, they were closed due to a power cut), so can't vouch personally.

And worth looking into whether Toscaninni's does brunch during the week? I know they do on weekends...

Looking for up-to-the-minute Pick Your Own Reports...

great, that's good to know. no kids, so don't need the train, and some of the places mentioned on this thread sound better anyway. will report back once we go!

Looking for up-to-the-minute Pick Your Own Reports...

wow, great thread! someone at my office had mentioned the belkin family farm in natick, and i have to say i was a little surprised to read on their website that they charge $15/person admission for PYO. is that typical in this area?

Liquor stores in Paris?

We've got most of a day in Paris tomorrow, and would love to find somewhere that has a good selection of unusual/classic spirits, if such a place exists. We'll be generally pretty central, getting in to Gare Austerlitz in the morning and taking the RER from Gare du Nord late afternoon. Other plans involve gorging ourselves on sweets at Pierre Herme, which should be good fun.

In case it helps, the bottle that would be the best prize would be some of the Elixir Vegetal de Chartreuse, but I think I have given up on finding it anywhere (after trying all over London and Limoges), but would love to bring back a bottle of something interesting in my suitcase.

Thanks in advance!

Aug 28, 2008
lettezilla in France

Madison, Wisconsin

we're going to be in madison for a few days this week, and this thread has been really useful.

in case anyone has read this thread and is worried about the lack of bagels, gotham bagels is apparently new and when we stopped on our way through madison this summer, we were really impressed by the quality and frendliness of the whole place.

Oct 30, 2007
lettezilla in Great Lakes

roadtrip from chicago through WI, around lake superior, through MI and back. where to eat?

we're playing it a bit by ear, but i suspect that we'll go all the way around, including into canada. tips for that corner in minnesota would be great. we basically decided to take this trip at the last minute, so haven't had that much time to do research, and food is probably the thing we enjoy most in our travels.

Jul 16, 2007
lettezilla in Great Lakes

roadtrip from chicago through WI, around lake superior, through MI and back. where to eat?

we're a couple of foodies recently moved from london. we're doing a smallish roadtrip around lake michigan and superior from chicago. i'd love to have some food/snack/ice cream/drink destinations in mind along the way, as our route is totally fluid.

i've heard door county is nice, and we may do a meal on mackinac island (or just fudge, based on reviews here!), but any suggestions for places along any stretch of the way would be most appreciated.

thanks in advance!

Jul 16, 2007
lettezilla in Great Lakes

group dining, walk to somewhere we can see fireworks?

yes, we saw them last night, pretty good! but several people have arrived from the UK this morning, so they'd like to see the regular navy pier fireworks if possible...

we're happy to watch from the lake anywhere up to belmont harbor, but having a hard time working out where we can eat and get to the lake quickly.

Jul 04, 2007
lettezilla in Chicago Area

group dining, walk to somewhere we can see fireworks?

hello, just moved back to chicago from 6 years in london. we're getting married this weekend, and have a load of family and friends visiting. we'd like to find some suggestions for decent value food for tonight-- i'm stumped!

we need somewhere that's open tonight (tricky enough, i think), ideally somewhere no more than 15 minutes from the lake, but could be anywhere between museum campus and belmont. has to suit vegetarians and omnivores, and the group prefers not mexican, thai, cajun or pizza since those meals have happened or are planned.

am i on a wild goose chase? any help or thoughts welcome!

Jul 04, 2007
lettezilla in Chicago Area

christmas meal in st. petersburg?

a friend and his parents are coming over to florida from england for a few weeks around the holidays. they would love to find somewhere in st. petersburg that is open for christmas lunch/dinner. any ideas?

thanks in advance!

Nov 29, 2006
lettezilla in Florida

Thanksgiving in Hong Kong

we had decided on three restaurants that we wanted to book in advance of our trip to hong hong-- aqua for the views, shui hu ju for the great reviews, and m-on-the-fringe for good food in a cozy atmosphere. as this'll be the first time in 5 years that i haven't thrown a thanksgiving dinner in london, i thought m-on-the-fringe sounded just the ticket for our meal on thanksgiving-- it gets great reviews, looks cozy and different and not as bustling as some places, and the menu looks great.

London: 3 dinners, 3 lunches

a second on the anchor and hope (no reservations, so if it's two of you and you want to sit together but not at a communal table, get there before they start serving dinner for a drink)

for lunches, some of the fine dining places do great set-menu lunch deals. for example pied a terre, which is one of my favorites in london, does a set menu for £35. well worth it!

Oct 25, 2006
lettezilla in U.K./Ireland