Friday, June 17, 2016

Japan Travel: Eating in Nara (奈良)

Nara (奈良) was the capital of Japan from 710 to 794.  In 2010, Nara celebrated the 1,300th anniversary of its ascension as Japan's imperial capital.

Because of its long history, Nara has developed a unique cooking culture (和食 / Woshoku) as detailed in [1].

Washoku (和食) in Nara

In [1] and [2], both of them mention the following two delicacies: 
  1. 鹿肉の大和煮 (shikaniku no Yamato-ni)
    • The venison meat that is high in protein is stewed and when you bite into its tender meat, you can’t help but agree at how delicious and fragrant the stew is.
  2. 柿の葉すし (かきの葉ずし /  kaki no hazushi)
    • Made of rice seasoned with vinegar and slices of salmon or salted mackerel on top
      • The mackerel used in this food is prepared according to a special method which is kept secret by the people who make it. This is why kakinoha zushi is only available in Nara.
    • Formed in the shape of a cube, and wrapped with a "kakinoha" or persimmon leaf.
      • Persimmon leaves contain tannin which acts as a natural antibacterial agent. They also contain vitamin C and can help to control high blood pressure. 


Based on the reviews on Tabelog.com, here are some recommendations for your consideration:

More Food Sources

As mentioned in [7], there are other stores than restaurants that sell food items such as bento, side dishes, vegetables, etc.  Here are some of them in Nara:

Photo Credit


  1. Washoku in Nara
    • 葛料理—dishes made from arrowroot starch
  2. 13 Top Local Culinary Delights in Kyoto and Nara
  3. What is Kakinoha-zushi?
  4. Hiking Trails in Japan 
  5. Tabelog.com (Nara)
  6. Japan: Visiting Nara (奈良) in One or Two Days (Travel for a Purpose)
  7. Japan Travel: Eating in Kyoto
  8. Survival Japanese as a Traveling Vegetarian (Travel for a Purpose)
  9. Survival Japanese at Restaurants (Travel for a Purpose)
  10. Survival Japanese—How to Order 丼ぶり (Travel for a Purpose)
  11. Japan: Best Autumn Color Spots near Kyoto (Travel for a Purpose)
  12. 50 things to do in Nara, Japan’s Oldest Capital

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