October 12th, 2020 issue

Camera Lens Drinking Glasses, Made-in-Japan Goods, and “Little Brooklyn” Ramen

In this issue we’ve got some interesting made-in-Japan goods, a new ryokan, yokai mythology, and ramen in “Little Brooklyn.”

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1. Intricate Camera Lens Drinking Glasses

Canon, the camera company, is teaming up with a local Japanese artisan craftswoman to create some really interesting drinking glasses inspired by camera lenses.

These are extremely cool looking and would make for excellent whiskey glasses to show off back home.

Edo Kiriko, the method of cut glass used to produce these glasses, is an offshoot of Satsuma Kiriko, a type of cut glass craft that dates back to the mid-1800s. When the craft was almost completely wiped out due to several wars…” (Spoon&Tamago)

2. Cool Made-in-Japan Kitchen Goods

To continue the trend of fashionable kitchen/dinnerware goods in this issue — here are 9 made-in-Japan goods that will make you the star with guests in your home.

Items such as superb cutlery, trendy chopsticks, or a minimalist drip coffee stand.

We’re certainly guilty of cooking more whilst working from home this year. For those looking to upgrade your kitchen tools, look no further than these unique Japan-made cookware, tableware and more.” (TokyoWeekender)

3. A New Ryokan in Shimokitazawa

A new ryokan is always welcome. This one, named Yuen Bettei Daita, in the hip neighborhood of Shimokitazawa in downtown Tokyo. It brings back a throw-back feel of the past with thatch materials, stone paths, bamboo, and the lighting wraps it all up nicely.

All-in-all, a very elegant traditional Japanese experience.

+Map pin to Yuen Bettai Daita

YUEN BETTEI DAITA sits in a quiet location surrounded by old, historical Japanese houses and is basked in nature. It houses 300 guest rooms and has open-air baths, a spa, and offers traditional Japanese food the tea ceremony.” (MoshiMoshiNippon)

4. The Mythical Legends of Yokai

Japan, much like you’d find in Greek mythology, has a rich belief in mythical creatures and ideologies. Yokai are one — being various demons and spirits, often based around something — like Aphrodite being the Goddess of Love.

It’s extremely interesting and there are so many different yokai stories you could end up reading about them for ages. Movies, anime, and TV shows are often based on yokai, or have yokai in them in some form or another.

Yokai are demons/spirits and monsters that belong to the Japanese Folklore. They are also known under the name of ayakashi, mamono, or Mononoke. Some of the most known yokai in Japan are kappa (rive-child), tengu (heavenly dog), that are equally considered to be Shinto gods(kami), and Oni (appearance of an ogre).” (GrapeJapan)

5. Tokyo’s “Little Brooklyn” Ramen

Kuramae, Tokyo’s “Little Brooklyn,” has seen quite a lot of growth in recent years. Of course, this means delicious food has to move in too. And what’s on everyone’s mind when hungry on the way home from work (or a cold winter evening)?

Ramen. That’s right. And Ramen Kai is a little gourmet ramen shop you should check out. Not a quick chain type of joint, instead everything is carefully constructed to bring you a next level bowl of ramen.

+Map pin to Ramen Kai

The Kuramae district in Taito Ward, Tokyo, called “Tokyo’s Little Brooklyn,” has seen more and more stylish stores that have been renovated from old buildings and warehouses, just like the real Brooklyn. The townscape along the Sumida River is also reminiscent of Brooklyn with its East River.” (TheJapanNews)

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