Japanese Cuisine

Oishi-Q Review: Cheap, Cheerful And Consistent Japanese Food

What’s better than eating delicious Japanese food at a restaurant? Eating tasty Japanese food at an affordable price! This was the case when I visited Japanese street food venue Oishi-Q in Manchester. Welcoming and relaxed, Oishi-Q offers a menu that runs the gamut from Japanese classic small plates like Agadashi Tofu, to larger, more filling plates like Unagi Don grilled eel with boiled egg and asparagus. Continue reading “Oishi-Q Review: Cheap, Cheerful And Consistent Japanese Food”

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Poetry

Ginjo To Die For

I’ll never forget the day I walked into a Japanese restaurant

And saw people fighting over a bottle of nihonshu

It was carnage

Middle-aged women tossed cutlery at each other

While young bloods tussled around on the floor

Kicking, biting and squirming to get a taste

One diner even used her pearl necklace as a garotte

And when she’d stepped over the competition

She tried to lift the bottle until the veins popped in her head

(I don’t think she read the label)

Is there such a thing as sake in the stone?

I’m not sure

But it didn’t stop other contenders from trying

Each person crawled through the war zone

Determined to prove their worthiness

But the bottle refused to budge

In the wake of such overwhelming chaos

Where was I?

I was enjoying a sip of cold futsushu

Some drinks don’t have to be premium

Some drinks are worthy enough

Pop Culture and Japan

The Pursuit Of Peace: The Story Of Wolverine And Itsu

In recent years, Japanese culture has found its way into the mainstream western comic industry through Marvel and DC. Marvel has done an excellent job of presenting the nuances of the Japanese way of life in characters such as Silver Samurai and Sunfire. And much of this influence is attributed to the work of Chris Claremont and Frank Miller in the 1980s, with their revamp of Wolverine into a failed samurai looking to reclaim his honour.

Wolverine’s connection to Japan is essential to understanding who he is, and his appreciation for the country has manifested through the women he’s loved. One of Logan’s greatest loves was Itsu, a character who shaped a significant portion of his life.

Continue reading “The Pursuit Of Peace: The Story Of Wolverine And Itsu”

Japanese Mythology · Women Warriors

Women Warriors: Empress Jingū

Japanese history is filled with stories of legendary figures like Minamoto no Yoshitsune and Sengo Muramasa who helped to shape the time periods they lived in. For every tale of a man who dictated the future of Japan, there are just as many inspirational stories about Japanese women shocking the system. Women Warriors examines the life of these brave souls who went against tradition.

One of the most interesting stories of a woman changing the status quo involves the legendary Empress Jingū, A semi-mythological figure, Empress Jingū’s life is a topic of much debate. Continue reading “Women Warriors: Empress Jingū”

Japanese Cuisine

Hibiki Japanese Harmony Review: A Fireball Of Flavour With Subtle Notes Of Sweetness

Japanese drink making is revered for its attention to craftsmanship and detail. With each year, more and more western consumers are becoming interested in sampling the elegance of Japan’s finest beverages. Japanese whisky is an excellent example of the western world’s craving for unique flavours.  

Brands like Suntory and Nikka have been able to capitalise on this opportunity by introducing a range of whiskies to the UK, Europe and America.  As a newbie to the world of Japanese whisky, I’ve begun to explore different blends and one that has stood out is Suntory’s Hibiki Japanese Harmony blend. Continue reading “Hibiki Japanese Harmony Review: A Fireball Of Flavour With Subtle Notes Of Sweetness”

Pop Culture and Japan

Yamato Magazine Reaches 100 Followers (Thank You!)

When it comes to writing, I find it’s one of the best ways to express myself and to improve my knowledge of the world. I founded Yamato Magazine as a way of increasing my awareness of Japanese culture, and since embarking on this journey, I’ve started to learn about aspects of Japan that I might not have thought about previously, such as sake.

Having a steady readership is another great motivator, which is why I’m happy to say that Yamato Magazine recently hit 100 followers! Thank you to all the people who’ve read, liked or commented on the articles so far. It’s inspired me to think about creating more Japan-centric content and continue to build the publication. Continue reading “Yamato Magazine Reaches 100 Followers (Thank You!)”

Japanese Fashion · Japanese Mythology

Dissecting The Parts Of Traditional Samurai Armour

The legend of the samurai is woven into the culture of Japan. Dutiful, stoic and formidable, samurai were bound to the code of bushido, protecting their lords and masters at any cost. In order to carry out their duty, samurai relied on a variety of equipment, and one of their most important assets was armour.

Traditional samurai armour is striking for how intimidating it looks. This was deliberate on the part of the warriors, as they wanted to terrify their opponents in battle. A great amount of detail went into the forging of the armour, with each piece being intricate and durable. Let’s take a closer look at  samurai armour and see how it was made. Continue reading “Dissecting The Parts Of Traditional Samurai Armour”