Monday, October 8, 2018

Japan Diary Part One: Osaka Postcard

I cannot express how guilty I am to not share my journey of Japan until today. If you really a long time follower, you would have know that I shut my blog down for almost two years since the year 2016. I just re-launched my current blog months ago. That is why I did not get the opportunity to share my journey to Japan in January this year.

Travelling to Japan is always on my list, and this one happened really, I call RANDOMLY. Aileen and I booked the air ticket by the Christmas time last year and departed just like 20 days later. With merely planned for it, we just ticked the cities we would like to visit and simply set the date. For foodies like we two, the whole journey was based on the location of the restaurants we wanted to visit.

Arrange your Transport:
There are so many types of public transport ticket available for purchase, but we are not in a rush. So we bough Suica (which is transport card that you can top-up). One of the benefit to get yourself a suica in Japan is that you can use it to buy goods in most franchising convenient stores and free from all the changes. And you can return it and get the refund when you leaving Japan.

Arrange your dining:
Please be noted that most famous dining places in Japan requires a reservation. I literally have no idea how long do we need to book ahead. But I just sent all the reservation enquiries the same day that I book the air ticket. I was so lucky that I reserved tables for those restaurants that I would like to visit. It is highly recommend you send e-mail/phone the restaurant two months ahead to secure yourself a spot, especially for those Michelin Stared ones.

Our major Japan Journey restaurant list:
YakinikuM, Dotonbori (Osaka)
Kani Doraku, Dotonbori (Osaka)
文目堂 soba (Osaka)
Kikunoi 菊の井 (Kyoto)
Mouriya Honten (Kobe)
Beige Alain Ducasse by Chanel (Tokyo)

Stop 1: Osaka

Aileen and I did not take flight from the same city. Instead, we departed from different airports (I took flight from Shanghai, and hers flight from Taiwan), and met up each other in Kansai Airport. Our first stop is Osaka for sure. Why? Because people call it the "Kitchen of the World", we will not be absent from that, never.

The very famous tourism photo you've got to take at Shinsaibashi(心斎橋)

*Dinner at YakinikuM, Dotonbori
This dining place is very close to Shinsaibashi, so we reserved a table here as I think it would be a good treat to us after the whole night of shopping and wanderlusting

*Universal Studio

We spent the whole day at the universal studio, because it is our all time favourite. Anything more exciting than being a student of Hogwarts for one day and have a butter beer in this chilling winter? It really tastes like creamy soda and milk foam on the top. Not really beer at all!

*Osaka Castle (大阪城)

The other day we just scrolling the Osaka city. Visited Osaka Castle (大阪城) and enjoyed a bird view of Osaka city. I really felt myself seeing the modern world from an eye of the history when standing at the top of Osaka Castle. I love ancient buildings and treasury because that is the only moment I felt to be strongly tied to time, to the entire time and forget about the moment I am really living in. Marvellous experience!

We had lunch at 文目堂 soba before heading to Osaka Castle. The restaurant/dining place itself is so quiet and has very much a tiny gate to my normal perspective. But the moment I entered the store, it was kind of pushing the door to a secret garden, a real Japanese garden. With brick colour based interior and a view of well-designed traditional Japanese garden, with a sense of Zen. The time was freezed at that moment. I never known that some plain looking soba could have a pure taste from its ingredient but not from any dressing/source. I see the chef put all his/her heart into preparing and cooking this bowl of amazingness.

Interesting fact: Aileen had two serves of noodles, which in my world is a mission impossible.

I am appreciated that I have your readers to share with my Osaka Journey, Part two will be uploaded very soon with the following stops:
Stop 2: Kyoto
Stop 3: Nara
Stop 4: Kobe


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