Amazing brand new video about the story of sushi

The Story of Sushi from Bamboo Sushi on Vimeo.

My friend Joe Sabia just finished this video for Bamboo Sushi, a Portland Oregon-based sustainable sushi restaurant run by entrepreneur Kristofer Lofgren. Did you ever think about how fish get from the ocean to your dinner table? Well, now you’ll never forget.

All handmade miniatures crafted and filmed in NYC. So great!

Taste test: the new Ajisen ramen joint in San Mateo


Last night, a few friends and I went to the pre-opening of a new ramen joint in San Mateo. It’s the latest iteration of Ajisen, located at 211 E 3rd Avenue. Opens today.

I had the Handmade Premium Pork Ramen, and here’s my two cents:

– broth = awesome
– noodles = a little on the soft side, but very tasty
– meat = sooooo good
– lots of veggies = healthy

The only down side was that there were so much meat and veggies on top of the noodles that I had a hard time slurping them.

After the meal was over, owner Akira Onozato brought us a special plate of three kinds of chashu. Sooo good. I recommend you try this place just for the chashu.

Nikkei Trendy reviews white rice


White rice is a big deal in Japan, as evidenced by this taste test conducted in this month’s issue of Nikkei Trendy. Four experts review five different kinds of koshihikari, and each concluded that a different one was better than the other.

My little brother used to be the pickiest white rice eater ever. He could tell instantly if my mom bought a different brand or let the rice soak overnight vs. a short soak in the morning before breakfast. My white rice taste buds, on the other hand, are not as picky. Besides, I live in California, where we eat stuff like brown rice sushi and quinoa.

Mameshiba commercial reveals why eels are brown

In this funny commercial for the Dentsu ad agency character Mameshiba, a fava bean pops out of its shell to tell these ganguro Shibuya girls that the reason eels are brown is because they tan too much. My sister-in-law was part of the team that created this popular character, which appears not only in cute bean-themed ads but as pillows, bedside lamps, and toy keychains for people with OCD.

Apple-peeling gadget de-skins fruit so you don’t have to


Check out this new gadget just for peeling fruit. You stick the core of the fruit into the metal tongs at center, and then by pushing and rotating the red plastic button and crank, you move the surface of the fruit along the adjustable blade. Useless or awesome? I’m gonna vote for useless — I actually enjoy peeling fruit with a knife, and besides, there really is on reason why you ever have to peel an apple. The skin is good for you!

Link (Japanese, via Impress Watch)

Five-day ramen extravaganza in Tokyo starts today


From today through Sunday, The Komazawa Olympic Stadium is hosting what might be the world’s greatest ramen event ever: The Tokyo Ramen Show. The best ramen chefs from around the country will congregate here and offer delicious bowls of noodle soup to attendees. If you go, please report back and let me know how it was! I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.

Event main page via Fred Schodt’s Twitter

A carrying case just for doughnuts (and a lollipop)


We have a lot of space-wasting single-use products in Japan, but none is more random in my opinion than this doughnut carrying case. As you can see, it has multiple features to help keep your doughnut safe from hazardous environments and theft — a ventilation system, a lock, and a place to put your name. You can even stick a lollipop in the middle!

Buy it here

Reporter buys crab from a vending machine in China

crabby vending
Uploaded by pubjapaned. – More video blogs and vloggers.

More people should be eating crab. That seems to be the ideology behind this hairy crab vending machine in China. The machine is basically a cryogenics chamber that keeps the animals alive but hibernating at near-freezing temperatures; if it turns out that they’re dead, you get three more for free. Yay!

via PopSci

Yayoi Kusama x Coca Cola vending machine


Wow, this is amazing. One of my favorite artists, Yayoi Kusama, has partnered with Coca Cola to design this wonderful polka-dotted vending machine.

(Thanks, Len!)

Related stories:
Amazing handsets designed by Yayoi Kusama
I Love Me, a film about famous OCD artist Yayoi Kusama
Yayoi Kusama, famous avant garde genius
Yayoi Deki is the new Yayoi Kusama
My radio piece about Japanese women artists

How to make omusoba


Over on Boing Boing, Mark Frauenfelder has written a fun feature about his quest to recreate omusoba, a popular festival food that is basically an omelet + yakisoba. He also took this funny photo of a sign explaining Japanese junk food (actually not really junk food at all) to English-speaking tourists. If you have question please ask to the stuff!

My quest to recreate one of the best things I’ve ever tasted: omusoba