Fukui Takes #1 Spot In National Soba Ranking

Fukui Takes #1 Spot In National Soba Ranking

“Netorabo” Survey, Yamagata Prefecture Ranked #2

Soba noodles in Fukui Prefecture receives high praise from its fans and ranks high across online surveys. A survey by “Netorabo”, a media website, during February collected votes on which prefecture in Japan had delicious soba noodles; Fukui Prefecture took the top rank, collecting over 40% of almost twenty thousand total votes. In an attempt to take advantage of the high praise, the prefecture will put even more effort into increasing the brand awareness and recognition of its soba noodles.

Netorabo conducted the online survey between February 7th and the 20th. There was a total of 19,056 votes, of which Fukui Prefecture received 7,932. Yamagata Prefecture, famous for its “Ita soba”, took 2nd place with 5,507 votes, while Nagano Prefecture, with its “Shinshuu soba”, took 3rd place with 1,509 votes.

In response to Fukui taking the top spot, a representative from the prefecture’s Fukui Rice Planning Department, who are in charge of public relations regarding soba, provided an analysis on the high level of support the prefecture received: “It was primarily because of Fukui Prefecture’s residents that helped spread awareness of the online survey through social media sites, in turn, promoting the flour milling manufacturers within the prefecture. I think many votes were submitted after seeing the shared information. After all, there are many people within the prefecture who already like Fukui’s soba to begin with.”

The comment section showed a lot of support for Fukui Prefecture, with comments such as, “Echizen Oroshi Soba is really delicious”, and “I’ve grown to appreciate the soba, after learning about things like how the local ingredients are cultivated”.

In the previous year’s “Delicious Soba Production Area Award 2020”, hosted by Nihon Soba Conservation Committee and judged by “Soba appraisers”, Fukui Prefecture took 1st place. The local ingredients bearing exceptional flavour and aroma are cultivated in various areas within the prefecture, and are highly valued.

Taking the great evaluations into account, Fukui Prefecture positions itself to put its resources into its public relations department. There are plans to create posters and banners touting Fukui’s top spot among the national soba ranking, an to have it posted across tourist attractions, stations, and soba shops within the prefecture. Along with the “Fukui Soba Online” website, published from last autumn, Fukui is aiming to establish its image as the “Soba Specialty Spot”.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1274817

Mizu Yokan Burger, An Original Fukui Specialty

Mizu Yokan Burger, An Original Fukui Specialty

Michi-no-Eki [Nishiyama Park], Habutae Mochi Topping Also Available

At Michi-no-Eki Nishiyama Park (located within Fukui Prefecture’s Sabae City), the “Mizu Yokan Burger”, a winter specialty of Fukui using mizu yokan (a Japanese red bean jelly), has gone on sale for a limited time. Presented with a generous amount of whipped cream, the burger has a splendid appearance, while offering a mild sweetness. The extraordinary combination of ingredients continues to gain popularity.

The Michi-no-Eki developed the burger to give visitors from outside the prefecture another way to learn about Fukui’s specialties. The toasted buns are spread with butter, and has mizu yokan, kinako (roasted soybean flour), and whipped cream sandwiched in between. The round-shaped mizu yokan used are provided by a confectionery shop within Sabae City, specially ordered to be used to fit burger buns; it has a lighter sweetness from using less brown sugar, to pair well with whipped cream. The kinako provides an extra accent to complete the Mizu Yokan Burger.

There is also a “Mizu Yokan Habutae Mochi Burger”, which has four to five bite-size pieces of habutae mochi (sweet Japanese rice cakes with a soft and silky texture) in between the mizu yokan and buns, adding a springy texture.

Manager Tsuromu Ito expressed, “Definitely come and try this snack-inspired burger!” The Mizu Yokan Burger is available for ¥300, with the Mizu Yokan Habutae Mochi Burger at ¥400 (tax included). These items are planned to be on sale until the end of February.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1249994

Distributing Milk Sweets to Support Dairy Farmers

Distributing Milk Sweets to Support Dairy Farmers

Five Confectionery Shops in Obama City, to Child Care Facilities

As a result of the temporary closures of elementary and junior high schools, as a preventative measure against the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), there has been an excess supply of milk. On March 26th and 27th, five confectionery shops within Fukui Prefecture’s Obama City used the milk to make sweets, and distributed the sweets across 17 child care facilities within the city.

From March 25th, the Fukui Prefectural Sweets Industry Association and the Fukui Prefectural Confectionery Association worked hard on and approved the “Dairy Farmer Support Project”.

“We wish to return the kindness in appreciation of the daily efforts by the dairy farmers,” addressed Masahiko Shimizu (aged 51), company president of Shihojuu (in Obama City, Yamate, 1-Chome), gathering the efforts of four other confecitonery shops.

Along with “milk purin”, using a considerable amount of milk, there are six varieties of sweets including Hojicha purin, “Kuzu purin” (which kneads together strawberries and Japanese arrowroot), and cream puffs; a total of approximately 900 sweets were prepared. The Kuzu purin and milk purin were developed for this occasion. For the children with allergies, sweets that did not use milk were also offered.

“We would be delighted if this action would be supportive towards dairy farmers, by having the children enjoy snacks that use milk,” said Shimizu.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1057436

Free Lunch for Elementary School Students During School Closures

Free Lunch for Elementary School Students During School Closures

A Restaurant in Takahama, Support in Response to the Novel Coronavirus

In a response to the simultaneous elementary and junior high school closures, resulting from the effects of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) infections, a restaurant in the Wada district of Fukui Prefecture’s Takahama Town called “FAMILIAR” is offering free lunch for elementary school students on weekdays.

The restaurant’s menu is varied, changing daily, including children’s favourites such as hamburgers, katsudon, karaage, and curry. Coming with a salad, attention is being paid to nutrition.

The service began from March 2nd, with the motivation to support parents and guardians. A local woman in her thirties, visiting the restaurant with three elementary school children, expressed her gratitude, “Having to make bentos for three children every day can be difficult. This really helps!” A first-year elementary school boy stated, “It’s delicious!”, satisfied with enjoying a different “school lunch” every time.

“Within the continuous feed of depressing news, the other staff and I wanted to do something to help others, and so we collectively decided to start this service,” said restaurant owner Shungo Imai (aged 35). As the circle of support expanded, contributions from local residents came in the forms of rice, vegetables, or sweets, with Shungo commenting, “We are happy to see the children enjoying themselves. There’s no need to hesitate; we’ll be glad for more visitors.”

The service will continue until the end of March. It will be available between 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. The restaurant is closed every Wednesday.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1052052

Cheap ¥200 Bentos for Children During School Closures

Cheap ¥200 Bentos for Children During School Closures

Four Restaurants in Tsuruga, “Eat Well!”

From March 17th, in efforts to help children sustain healthy eating habits during the school closures, four restaurants within Fukui Prefecture’s Tsuruga City have begun offering a ¥200 “Children’s Lunch Box”. Shouji Oshima (aged 44), a representative of the bento manufacturer that initiated the project “Kehi no Sato” (in Tsuruga City, Imojo-cho), expressed in a statement, “Even with no more school lunches, we want the children to eat well and stay healthy.” The service will continue until April 2nd, every Tuesday and Thursday.

Twelve restaurant associates within the city worked together to gather contributions from businesses, groups, and individuals, offering meals equivalent to ¥500. In addition to Kehi no Sato, the other three restaurants offering the children’s meals are Omusubiya Honnori (in Shinmatsushima-cho), SHIROYAGI-san Chi no Obento (in Sawa), and CURRY HOUSE CoCo ICHIBANYA Tsuruga-Honmachi shop (in Honmachi, 2-Chome). The menu will vary between each restaurant. Each restaurant will have about 40 servings prepared.

At Kehi no Sato, there are 12 varieties of bentos available, which includes hamburger steak, fried shrimp, or katsudon. More children had visited the shop than initially expected, selling approximately 60 servings.

The meals will be available from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Inquiries can be made through Kehi no Sato’s phone line 0770 (25) 6965.

Source: https://www.fukuishimbun.co.jp/articles/-/1049648