One thriving part of Japanese culture that is a must for visitors are onsen. Onsen are natural hot springs that are scattered throughout the country, thanks to Japan’s location in a volcanic region. Onsen each have different combinations of minerals that are believed to have medical benefits. You can visit indoor and outdoor onsen, as well as private, public, mixed gender, and separate gender. Many resort towns have sprung up around onsen to cater to visitors from around the world. Here is a look at some of the most popular locations.
This resort is one of the most popular for people who want to visit onsen. Three hot springs feed water into the onsen at this resort, which is famed for using a traditional method of cooling the springs called yumomi. Yumomi involves using large paddles made of wood that fan the water to reduce the temperature. Visitors can enjoy a demonstration of yumomi being performed each day at the Netsu No Yu bathhouse.
Kurokawa onsens in Kumamoto is the perfect choice for visitors in search of a more rustic experience. You won’t find high-rise hotels or flashing lights in this onsen town but rather a town that has carefully preserved an older way of life. There are three open-air baths as well as ample hiking experiences around the town, which sits between Mount Aso and the Kuju mountains.
Dogo onsen, which can be found in Matsuyama, is the oldest in the country. The public bath opened in 1894 and is surrounded by a three-story, traditionally designed structure. Viewers of the film Spirited Away will recognize the building, as it was the inspiration for a bathhouse that appears in the animated feature.
Although the onsen of Japan may be far away, Japanese food is not, thanks to House of Genji. Come experience teppanyaki and hibachi dining at our Japanese restaurant in San Jose. You can learn more about our menu by calling (408) 453-8120.
In Japanese restaurants in the US, teriyaki is one of the most recognizable things on the menu for most people. In the US, teriyaki is usually thought of as a sauce, but in Japan, it is a style of cooking. The sauce may have originated not in Japan but in Hawaii, which is home to large ex-pat Japanese population. Here is a look at the history of teriyaki.
Teriyaki as a Cooking Method
In Japan, teriyaki as a style of cooking originated in the 17 th century. The “teri” part of the word loosely translates to “glazed,” while “yaki” means “broiled” or “grilled.” In Japan, the sauce that is used in meals that are prepared in teriyaki style is not necessarily like the teriyaki sauce used in Japanese restaurants in the US. Instead, when you see teriyaki on the menu in Japan, it is usually describing a glazed and grilled fish dish—usually salmon, tuna, or mackerel.
Teriyaki Sauce in Hawaii
The teriyaki sauce that is familiar in Japanese food in the US is believed to have been created by Japanese immigrants in Hawaii. The Japanese population there crafted a marinade that contained traditional flavors from Japan, like mirin, sake, and soy sauce, as well as ingredients that were indigenous to their new home in Hawaii, such as pineapple. Using this sauce as a marinade for grilled fish, chicken, and meat gradually increased in popularity and eventually become popular in the mainland in the 1960s, when there was an uptick in interest in Japanese cuisine.
Teriyaki Sauce Today
Today, teriyaki sauce typically contains some mixture of soy, mirin or sake, garlic, brown sugar, and pineapple juice. The sweet sauce can be used as a marinade, as a baste for cooking, or as a dipping sauce.
You can enjoy teriyaki sauce along with a variety of Japanese food specialties at House of Genji, including traditional teppanyaki cooking. Find out more about our menu and hours by calling our Japanese restaurant in San Jose at (408) 453-8120.
When it comes to finding delicious and entertaining Japanese dining, look no further than House of Genji, where we offer teppanyaki, sushi, and creative cocktails. To round out your meal at our Japanese restaurant, choose from the following side dishes that we offer:
- Edamame Boiled soy beans in pods
- Age-gyoza Japanese-style, deep-fried pot stickers
- Ahe tataki Sliced and seared ahi tuna dipped in a ginger soy sauce
- Tempura Shrimp and vegetables deep-fried in a light batter
- Vegetable tempura A mix of deep-fried vegetables
- Panko wings Tender chicken wings that are breaded and deep-fried
- Tofu Agedashi tofu with traditional broth or our sweet and spicy sauce
You can also choose from our scallop sauté, calamari sauté, deep-fried calamari, shrimp sauté, Genji soup, and Genji salad.
Are you ready to enjoy delicious Japanese dining in San Jose? If so, then call House of Genji today at (408) 453-8120 to make your reservation with our Japanese steakhouse.
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