Honzen Ryori

Honzen 本膳 is the first course set of dishes and meals to be served before alcohol, specifically Sake, was served. They were served on a Zen 膳 which was an individual small dining table that was commonly used until the beginning of the 20th century. Western style dining tables and chair sets only became popular around the 1970s.

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Unagi no Kabayaki / Teriyaki Eel

There are certain Japanese dishes that are very popular abroad. At the same time there are also many great Japanese dishes that aren’t. To put it another way, since certain Japanese dishes haven’t been properly introduced outside of Japan, people are not hooked just yet. As a result the dishes are not popular and few restaurants serve them. And since the demands are scarce, the best products would not come to the US. It boils down to chicken or the egg question. Then again perhaps certain things are best kept in Japan allowing a chance for travelers to discover them.

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Learn about premium nori!

I was at a sushi restaurant when the chef handed me a hand roll and said, “This is very
good Nori. It’s pricier than the fish in this roll.” I paused and wondered if that’s possible.
When eating sushi, fish is the main focus of our meal and we hardly pay attention to
Nori, the seaweed.

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