We are excited to celebrate Seattle-Kobe Sister City 65th Anniversary! Kobe is Seattle’s oldest sister city and over the past 65 years, the Seattle Kobe Sister City Association has organized many events to promote mutual understanding and lasting friendship between the two cities. For the next couple weeks (October 26-November 8), we will be sharing the vibrant and rich foods of Kobe and Hyogo Prefecture at our stores.
Kobe is Japan’s seventh largest city and is centrally located in Hyogo Prefecture. Hyogo, of course, is known for Kobe Beef, but that’s not all that Kobe & Hyogo have to offer. Sandwiched between mountain and sea, many foods are influenced by these elements.
*Product availability varies by store. While Supplies Last.
Some featured items include:
A5 Wagyu Beef
Wagyu beef is known for its exquisite marbling and unmatched tenderness. This Wagyu beef from Hyogo is A5, which is the highest rank. A5 Wagyu beef is characterized by its tenderness, nice color, and high fat content. The fat itself also has a distinct color and high quality. Whether served as steak or shabu-shabu, it is a melt-in-your-mouth delicacy that is a must try!
Harima no Shizuku Oyster
Named after Harima-nada or Harima Bay, these oysters only take one year to harvest. How? The sea has an abundance of nutrients and minerals flowing from the mountains and rivers allowing these oysters to grow quicker, therefore are known as “one year oysters”. In addition, due to shorter harvesting time, there is less impact from the ocean making these oysters less fishy. They are sweet, juicy, tender and have minimal shrink when cooked.
Hyogo is the prefecture with the highest production of sake in all of Japan. Within Hyogo is Nada-Gogō, an area with breweries accounting for just over one quarter of the sake production in the entire country. In the past, Hyogo sake was considered so special that it was called kudaru sake, essentially meaning “sake of immeasurable worth,” while all others were called kudaranai sake, essentially meaning “ordinary sake.” Today, there are 69 sake breweries in Hyogo, each producing delicious sake with their own specialties. Try different kinds of sake to find the ones that suit your taste buds. A sake sommelier will be at the fair on Saturday and Sunday at our Seattle store (1:00-6:00 pm) to help you find your perfect sake.
This sauce has a rich, sweet-and-sour taste and the perfect blend of spices. Dating all the way back to 1948, this sauce is great for adding on top of fried cutlets or even for dipping French fries. Oliver Sauce is a representative sauce for the Kansai region, supporting the region’s food culture, which is said to be the richest in Japan. It is widely used in Japan for Hamburg steak, tonkatsu (pork cutlet), croquettes, yakisoba (Japanese style stir-fried noodles), and other dishes. Sweeter and thicker than Worcestershire sauce, this sauce is a big hit with children and goes well with almost any dish.
Kobe is home to UCC or Ueshima Coffee Company, one of Japan’s most popular coffee and tea manufacturers. They are the first to introduce canned coffee to the world with their “UCC Milk Coffee” in 1969. Today, they sell their coffee worldwide and have their own coffee estates in Jamaica and Hawaii.
Marukan Rice Vinegar
Marukan Vinegar traces its roots to 1649 where Yasutsugu Hanzaemon Okada started producing refined vinegar. 30 years later, he passed the business to his son who then began the tradition of producing rice vinegar. In 1893, they established their headquarters in Kobe, Japan. Today, Marukan Vinegars are used in salad dressings, sauces and marinades worldwide.
Made with centuries-old traditional methods and using select certified organic rice from California’s Northern Central Valley, this rice vinegar has a delicate aroma and a rich flavor. Rice vinegar is often used for cooking in Japan because it mitigates the strong odors of certain fish, tenderizes meat, and adds richness and depth to a variety of dishes.