Do you know “Haru Sushi”? Enjoy Okayama's local cuisine in a free style

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Meat, including seafood? fruits! ? A new style of sushi with a wide variety is becoming a hot topic. We will introduce restaurants where you can enjoy Harezushi, which is attracting attention as a new Okayama locally produced gourmet dish, from among the restaurants registered as Okayama Prefecture'...

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What is "Haru Sushi"?

Bara sushi, known as a local dish of Okayama Prefecture, has been a popular special occasion dish since ancient times. However, as lifestyles and the environment change, the number of producers has decreased, and it has become difficult to obtain ingredients. Under such circumstances, "Haru Sushi" was born to pass on the local taste to future generations. The sushi rice is made from rice from Okayama Prefecture, and the ingredients are made from seasonal Okayama ingredients. Harezushi is Reiwa's bara sushi, where you can enjoy local ingredients and flavors in a variety of ways.

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1.Kibi SA Downbound/Japanese Restaurant Ura no Sato (Okayama City)

The Sanyo Expressway Kibi is a place where the entire facility promotes Okayama, including restaurants where you can enjoy gourmet food made with Okayama ingredients, shops with souvenirs unique to Okayama, and a marche lined with seasonal vegetables and fruits from Okayama. SA down”. Ura no Sato, which has a welcome gate and can be accessed from the general road, is a restaurant where you can enjoy authentic Japanese cuisine in an expressway service area. This Haru Sushi is “Strawberry Seafood Sushi” (1,580 yen)! The sushi topped with bright red strawberries is as cute as a decorated cake.

If you look closely at the vinegared rice, you will see that it is slightly pink. Actually, it seems that strawberry puree is mixed in. The refreshing sweetness of the strawberries goes surprisingly well with the sourness of the vinegar. The mellow flavor of vinegared rice goes well with fish, and it is a delicious experience that you will experience for the first time. You can mix the ingredients with vinegared rice, or eat the fish by dipping it in soy sauce like sashimi. Enjoy as you like.

The fish used are chewy and elegantly sweet Japanese mackerel, rich and chewy sea bream, and hamachi with a moderate amount of fat and less flavor. The head chef himself visits the Shimotsui market every morning and carefully selects and purchases the freshest fish from the Setouchi Inland Sea! You can enjoy the different tastes and textures of each.

The strawberries, which can be said to be the “face” of Haru Sushi, are locally grown and lined up at Marche in SA. The sweet and sour aroma of freshly picked ripe strawberries, bright red in color, tickles your nose. “Strawberry Seafood Sushi” is a seasonal menu that uses delicious strawberries. The offer period is from December to the end of May, so don't miss out.

[Kibi SA Downbound/Japanese Restaurant Ura no Sato]

Location: 476 Imaoka, Kita-ku, Okayama City, Okayama Prefecture

TEL: 086-284-8600 Business hours: 11:00-21:00 (LO20:30)

Closed: None Parking: 110 large spaces, 134 small spaces, about 30 spaces at the welcome gate (on the public road side)

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2. Tsuyama Shuna Restaurant Shiromitei (Tsuyama City)

Shiromitei, a restaurant located on the 4th floor of Arne Tsuyama, serves Harezushi in Tsuyama City in the northern part of the prefecture. As Tsuyama has a long history of meat-eating culture, the main ingredient is beef. ``Meat on sushi!?'' may seem surprising, but the combination of the richly seasoned Tsuyama Wagyu beef and the refreshing vinegared rice is exquisite, bringing out the flavors of each other. ``Tsuyama Wagyu beef sukiharu sushi'' (1,500 yen) is vinegared rice topped with tinsel egg, shiso leaves, shiitake mushrooms, vinegared lotus root, cucumber, and lemon.

The other dish is "Tsuyama Wagyu Roast Beef Haru Sushi" (1,500 yen). Tender and juicy roast beef served with soy sauce-based homemade sauce. Both are only available during lunch time and advance reservations are required. The set includes a salad of fresh vegetables purchased every morning from local JA, etc., a small bowl of seasonal ingredients, and soup with noodles made from local rice flour.

Tsuyama Wagyu beef is raised with wheat bran from Tsuyama added to its feed. At Shiromitei, we use shoulder loin (pictured) for our beef sukiharu sushi, and thigh meat for our roast beef sushi.

The rice is Kanetatsumai, a Kinumusume rice grown in Tsuyama City, which has been ranked Special A in the Japan Grain Inspection Association's taste ranking for five years in a row. Curved rice, which is also used in JAL's first class in-flight meals, is rice grown in clean water and the difference in temperature between day and night. It is as delicious as the taste of meat.

[Tsuyama Shuna Restaurant Shiromitei]

Address: 4th floor, Arne Tsuyama, 17 Shinuomachi, Tsuyama City, Okayama Prefecture

TEL: 0868-35-3805 Business hours: 10:00-17:00

*Lunch time is 11:00-15:00 (LO 14:30) Closed: Wednesdays, irregular holidays

Parking: Use Arne/Tsuyama parking lot

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3. Sushi Japanese Cuisine Isshin (Kurashiki City)

Isshin, which has been in business for nearly half a century in the seaside town of Kojima in the southern part of Kurashiki City, is a Japanese seafood restaurant where you can enjoy seafood from the Seto Inland Sea. This is a restaurant where you can enjoy seasonal seafood in a variety of ways, including sashimi, tempura, simmered fish, and grilled fish. Here, we offer "Harezushi (comes with chawanmushi and miso soup)" as a limited menu only on Fridays (1,320 yen). The vinegared rice is sweetly seasoned using local rice, and Gomoku zushi is made with lotus roots, carrots, burdock, bamboo shoots, and other ingredients that are prepared separately. A standard yet luxurious piece of sushi with large toppings such as seafood and vegetables on top.

The top of the kinshi tamago is decorated with ingredients unique to Setouchi and Okayama. There is a wide variety of dishes, including the umami and sweetness of the shrimp, the aromatic grilled conger eel, and the sweet and spicy boiled seaweed. In addition, Spanish mackerel is used in the pickled fish that is essential for Okayama's local cuisine, rose sushi.

Isshin's Harezushi can also be taken out. The colors are gorgeous, so it's perfect for going out during the tourist season or for cherry blossom viewing in the spring. 1,296 yen per person. If requested, they will also accept orders from the sushi oke. The photo shows 5 servings (5,500 yen/takeout 5,400 yen).

The atmosphere inside the store is calm. The first floor has a total of 27 seats including counter, tatami room, and private rooms. Banquets for up to 40 people can be held on the second floor. This restaurant is a delight for both locals and tourists, serving a wide range of dishes including set meals, rice bowls, nigiri, shrimp and conger eel box sushi, and kaiseki cuisine.

[Sushi Japanese Cuisine Isshin]

Location: 1-68 Kojima Ekimae, Kurashiki City, Okayama Prefecture

TEL: 086-472-7728 Business hours: 11:30-14:00, 17:00-22:00

Closed: Monday Parking: 5 spaces *3 spaces available in separate locations

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Written by

Okayama Prefecture is located in the center of western Japan and is known as the ``Land of Sunny'' due to its mild climate with little rain throughout the year. Conveniently located in the middle of famous sightseeing spots in Kyoto, Osaka, and Hiroshima! It is also the gateway to Shikoku via the Seto Ohashi Bridge. Okayama is also known as the "Fruit Kingdom," and the fruits that have been exposed to the sun in the warm climate of Setouchi are of the highest quality in terms of sweetness, aroma, and taste. You can enjoy seasonal fruits such as white peach, muscat, and pione! There are also world-class sightseeing spots such as ``Okayama Castle'', ``Okayama Korakuen'', one of Japan's three famous gardens, and Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter, which are proud of their history, culture, and art!

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