Featured in “Oishii”, an English-language Japanese food magazine in Singapore

Miyazakien is featured in “Oishii”, an English-language Japanese food magazine in Singapore

We have obtained the consent to translate the article and post it on this site.

Eat and rest well in the Aichi Highlands – 愛知高原でよく食べて,よく休んで

After a detox holiday in the countryside here, Aichikogen-Okumikawa, you’ll return feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

ここ,奥三河の愛知高原で休暇をすごせば,すばらしい休養となり,元気をもらえます。

Miyazakien Tea Garden and the Master , Atsushi UMEMURA
Miyazakien Tea Garden and the Master , Atsushi UMEMURA
Location map of Mikawa highlands in Aichi Prefecture in Japan
Location map of Mikawa highlands in Aichi Prefecture in Japan

Must-eats in Aichikogen-Okumikawa – あいち高原/奥三河で見逃せない食

Symbolic rice and miso come together as one in gohei-mochi; remember to try the region’s signature ayu fish too.

glazed gohei-mochi
glazed gohei-mochi

In Japanese cuisine, rice is more than a meal staple. Cultivated in Japan for 2,000 years, the grain also has much financial, historical and cultural significance. In the past, rice was used as a currency (or as tax money for farmers). Today, Japan’s most important crop isn’t only eaten during meals; it is used in a myriad products, from sakes to vinegars.

It’s no wonder that there’s the Otaue Matsuri or “rice field planting festival”. Celebrated in spring to mark the start of a new year, this sees the Japanese praying for a successful harvest. In some versions of the festival, seeds are planted in fields while in others, the planting process is acted out. Then, when autumn arrives, harvest festivals are held to give thanks, too.

Japanese rice, a short translucent grain that turns sticky when cooked, is grown in the country’s valleys, terraces and fields, with terraced rice plantations being one of the rarer sights. The Yotsuya Senmaida fields in Aichi Prefecture is famous for having more than 1,000 “steps” and produces the grains for some of the region’s signature rice cakes or gohei-mochi.

If you do visit Aichikogen-Okumikawa, have this as your main meal or as a snack. Resembling a big lollipop, this rice cake is grilled on a skewer and glazed with sesame or miso paste, or even topped with crushed walnuts. One of the traditional shops serving this is Matsuya, which has been around since 1935 and sells

grilled ayu fish skewers
grilled ayu fish skewers

300 gohei-mochi every day on weekends. Owner Yachie Maruyama pounds the rice by hand, uses a secret recipe for her miso paste and grills the cakes over a charcoal fire.

Miso paste is another example of a Japanese diet staple. Once reserved for nobles and monks, miso, which has health benefits like preventing gastric disorders and lowering blood pressure, is made from fermented soybeans. It is now most commonly used in soups that are best paired with steaming hot Japanese rice for a simple yet comforting meal, or on gohei-mochi as a sweet, robust seasoning.

Besides miso-paste gohei-mochi, Aichikogen-Okumikawa is known for the freshwater ayu fish, which can be eaten at restaurants like Chiyohimeso. A skewer is pierced into the fish mouth and through its body before it is cooked over charcoal. Although ayu fish can be stewed in soya sauce and sugar, the locals like it best grilled in its own deliciously briny oils. We can’t agree more. –>

Meet the Game Changers ゲームチェンジャーに会う

Atsushi Umemura, Miyazakien 宮ザキ園 梅村篤志

This dapper 39-year-old looks nothing like a traditional tea farmer. Not surprising since Umemura, the sixth-generation owner of the Miyazakien tea house that has been around since 1820, wants to modernise the art of tea drinking .

こちらの粋な39歳の男性,伝統的な茶農家のイメージとはかけ離れている。だが,それも当然だ。1820年ごろに創業した宮ザキ園の6代目園主,梅村氏は,茶芸の近代化を目指している。

Atsushi UMEMURA, Miyazakien 宮ザキ園 梅村篤志
Atsushi UMEMURA, Miyazakien 宮ザキ園 梅村篤志
How different is Miyazakien from other tea businesses in Japan? 宮ザキ園は日本国内の他の茶園とどのように違うのか。

We are unusual in how we see through the entire process, from processing the tea to selling the leaves wholesale and even serving tea on our premises. In 2006, we also became the first organic tea farm in Aichi Prefecture.

お茶の加工から茶葉の卸売販売,そして当園でお茶を飲んでいただく喫茶部門(「一匙(ひとさじ)」)の併設まで、私たちはお茶に関わる全過程で他とは違った珍しい取り組みをしています。私達は2006年に愛知県で最初の有機茶の認証農場となりました。

How do you attract new customers? どのように新しい顧客を開拓されていますか?

As a wholesaler, we usually supply our products to businesses elsewhere but I want people to come visit us directly instead. So, on the second level of our teahouse, we conduct experiential workshops like flower arrangement lessons.

お茶の供給業者としては一般的な,事業者様向けの茶の卸売販売もしていますが,最近は特に,当園を直接訪れてくださる方を大切にしたいと考えています。ですので,「一匙(ひとさじ)」の二階で,華道のレッスンのようなお茶の体験ワークショップを開催しています。

How else are you modernising your tea business? その他に変えてきた点は?

As a wholesaler, we can’t really change the style of our tea products too much. So, we try and serve tea in different new ways. For example, we sell houjicha flavoured shaved ice. This attracts long queues of customers, and we can sell about 100 bowls in a day. But with the shaved ice, we serve tea too, so customers can taste it and be encouraged to purchase our tea leaves. We also experiment with different ways of drinking tea: serving green tea in teacups with ice chips or in a wine decanter-inspired bottle and in wine glasses.

お茶の販売業者として,私達はお茶に必要以上に手を加えることをしたくありません。ですので,お茶を変えるのではなく,お茶に親しんでいただく方法を新たに提案しています。例えば,私どもはほうじ茶味のかき氷を販売しています。この商品は大変好評で,一日に百セットほど売れますが,かき氷を食べていただくことで,お客様に当園のお茶に接してもらう機会を作り出しています。かき氷を通じて当園のお茶の味を知ってもらい,茶葉をお買い求めいただくことにつながっています。他にも,お茶の飲み方でいろいろと試しています。例えば,緑茶を氷入りでお出ししたり,ワインデキャンターのようなボトルに詰めたお茶をワイングラスに注いで提供したりしています。

Miyazakien
8 Aino, Ishihara-cho, Okazaki City, Aichi 444-3601
Tel: 0564-83-2710

宮ザキ園
〒444-3601 愛知県岡崎市石原町相野
Tel:0564-83-2710

The Okazaki delicious food festival at Seibu Okazaki store is until tomorrow

岡崎うまいもの会・宮ザキ園のほうじ茶つめほうだい
岡崎うまいもの会・宮ザキ園のほうじ茶つめほうだい

Miyazakien is participating in the “Okazaki Umai mono Food Festival” on the first floor of the Seibu Okazaki store for a week from 28th June to 4th, July. This time, we are promoting Matcha Butter Cake, which is co-developed with “Butter Cake Store Nomoto”, as well as selling our “Wa Kocha”, the Japanese black tea, green tea and matcha using new crop. You can also enjoy our fragrant “Nukata Ichiban Hojicha”, the roasted Japanese tea.


バターケーキ抹茶 宮ザキ園と「バターケーキの店 のもと」さんの共同開発商品です。
バターケーキ抹茶 宮ザキ園と「バターケーキの店 のもと」さんの共同開発商品です。

Matcha butter cake is a new product that the butter cake professional, Mr Nomoto created using our Miyazakien’s Matcha after thirty years of butter cake experience. The best way in this season to eat this excellent cake is to cool it down in a refrigerator and you can make it even more delicious. To a taste of rich butter, a little bitter ande sweet matcha matches well with tea ceremony. You can enjoy it with the customer in a slightly larger amount.

宮ザキ園のほうじ茶
宮ザキ園のほうじ茶

In addition, you can meet our “Nokata Ichiban Hojicha”, the roasted Japanese tea which is made of tea leaves grown up in our organic garden. Even in overseas sales, it has been very popular as rich roasted flavour. In this hot season, chilled Hojicha is also good for having a rich time with your families and friends.

The Seibu Okazaki store is located in Okazaki City “Okazaki Umai mono food festival” is up to tomorrow, the 4th, July.

Meet us at Seibu Okazaki!

保存保存保存保存

保存保存

保存保存

保存保存

opening of the Miyakien temporal shop at Seibu Okazaki

It is an announcement of the opening of the Miyakien temporal shop at Seibu Okazaki. From the coming 28th, June (Wednesday) to 4th, July (Tue), the Miyazakien will open a short time shop at the 2nd Okazaki quality food festival to be held at the Seibu Okazaki store.

This time, our Hojicha and Nomoto’s delicious chilled “Matcha Butter Cake” are the eye-opening products.

Also, as usual, you can enjoy our free tasting service of our Japanese green tea hot and chilled.

The Seibu Okazaki Store is located in Okazaki city, Aichi Prefecture. We will meet you on the 1st floor, special venue.

Meet us at Seibu Okazaki!

Meet us at Hoshigaoka Mitsukoshi in mid April 2017

From the coming 12th April (Wednesday) to 18th April  (Tueseday), the Miyazakien will open a temporal shop at Hoshigaoka Mitsukoshi in Nagoya.

This time, we introduce our most popular two products, Sencha, the Japanese green tea “Haru Moegi” which means Spring fresh green, and Gyokuro, “Sae Midori”, which means deep green. While opening a store, the staff of Miyazakien resides and conducts tasting services.

The place is the food department of the Mitsukoshi Hoshigaoka underground floor. Hoshigaoka Mitsukoshi has a direct link to Nagoya city subway Higashiyama Line Hoshigaoka Station.

We are looking forward to having you enjoy tea.

宮ザキ園出店のお知らせです。来たる4月12日(水)から4月18日(火)まで,名古屋の星が丘三越に宮ザキ園が出店いたします。 今回ご紹介する商品は,宮ザキ園の売れ筋定番商品。イチオシは煎茶の「はるもえぎ」,玉露の「さえみどり」です。 出店中は,宮ザキ園のスタッフが常駐し,試飲サービスなどを行います。 場所は,星が丘三越地下一階の食品売り場です。星ヶ丘三越は,名古屋の市営地下鉄東山線星ヶ丘駅直結です。どうぞおこしください。

Meet us in Malaysia!

We will have a tea tasting sale event at Isetan in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from February 17th to 27th. It is a store in Japan Food Labo.

We bring our Japanese sencha, hojicha (roasted Japanese green tea), the wakocha (Japanese black tea) and the full moon tea from Japan, and 6th representative, Atsushi will also appear on 17th and 19th. The Hojicha, Nukata ichiban Hojicha is renewed for this events which now having  English explanation!

The place is located on the basement floor of the Isetan The Japan Store Kuala Lumpur, the food department and the floor are located in the Lot 10 shopping centre in Kuala Lumpur city.

Meet in KL!

The Japan Food Labo, Isetan The Japan Store Kuala Lumpur 2017 FEB

The Japan Food Labo, Isetan The Japan Store Kuala Lumpur 2017 FEB