March, 2011

Mjölk Wedding Details

March 13th, 2011

January 23rd we closed the store to have our wedding. It was a winter wedding so I guess what we wanted to accomplish with our wedding besides getting married was to create a warm and cozy environment for our family and friends. We only had 22 guests so we anchored the night around a gourmet dinner by Chef Ezra Title.

Before we go any further, all wedding photos are by the lovely and talented Danijela Prujinic. She was such a pleasure to work with – sweet, excited and professional.

The aesthetic is inspired by Sweden, simple, bright, and white. We even borrowed a nice tradition for our ceremony – walking down the aisle together. We wanted to have one long single communal table so that everyone could sit together, one of the benefits of having a small wedding!

All of the chairs, folding tables, glassware, plates, and white linen and napkins were rented from Chairman Mills. It was actually one of the most expensive aspects of the wedding, we really had no idea until we got our bill.

I should mention that we will create a post of the actual wedding, so don’t worry! This post will be specifically about the details.


We requested the help from Alison at Coriander Girl to do our flowers, we already loved her aesthetic and after brainstorming a few ideas we came up with the palette–whites, blacks, reds, and dark blues–to create a collection of high contrast bouquets.

The resulting mix of textures and colours was just beautiful.

Since Alison already had an amazing collection of antique mason jars and apothecary jars we decided to rent them instead of having to find our own.

Our friend Jake from Machine Age Modern has an amazing collection of Timo Sarpaneva Festivo candle holders, probably around 200 pieces. We asked if we could borrow some for the wedding and he thought it was a great idea, he even took it one step further and dropped them off to us. That was so nice of him, thanks Jake! We loved the look of the snowball candles that were originally designed for the Festivo. We found a company online selling them and they probably thought we were crazy ordering so many.

Another nice detail is the rough natural linen runner we made for the table. We headed on down to Designer Fabric Outlet to look at linens, and lucky for us there was a big roll on sale. We worked within the confines of the roll to come up with our dimensions to keep the cost as low as possible, and simply cut the length out by hand which gave it a nice softness to the edges. The result was so nice we’re going to bring the runner up to the cottage for our long black table this summer.

We really liked the idea of layering materials so we had linen, wood, glass, and even reindeer antlers.

We chose these white Dala horses as our wedding favors for our guests. They are so nice and simple, we hope everyone will hold on to them for years to come.

Our menus feature an illustration by Melinda Josie, a painting we actually own of hers. The layout of the menu were designed by our friends Henry and Melissa from graphic design studio Sali Tabacchi.

We used the wooden labels from our store to make little name tags.

We set up our vintage electric fireplace downstairs to finish the cozy feel of the space. It was going to be a cold night so I think everyone was happy to be inside.

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Things we brought back home from Hokkaido

March 10th, 2011

It seems we’ve caught up on most of our work, so this morning I spent some time photographing some of the things we brought home from Japan. I didn’t include a few items which will be featured in another post, specifically the pieces we purchased from Sabita in Sapporo. I hope you enjoy this post, and please if there are things that you would like to see in the store, let us know and we’ll see what we can do!

This first little fox we purchased from Brow Box in Asahikawa. We love that the artist left all of the little tool marks.

These two spoons are from the Yunosato Desk gift shop, they are nice and deep. The block of wood underneath is Hokkaido maple, it has an interesting grain and was a gift from our tour guide around Yunosato Desk.

Juli purchased a set of travel chopsticks from HOMES in Asahikawa, they are a beautiful blend of traditional Japanese lacquer, teak, and brass hardware. The ceramic bird chop stick rests were a wedding gift from the shop owner.

The wooden bracelet and cherry wood wine stopper were very thoughtful gifts from Maruichi-san the owner of the Maruichi wood processing facility (where the wrap-wraps are produced.) The wooden ruler was a gift from Masanori Oji, he designed this ruler to use a traditional method of Japanese measuring (as well as centimeters.) It’s a piece that Oji-san makes as gifts for his friends.

The set of three coffee spoons were purchased from Cholon is Sapporo, the artist lives in the Southern part of Hokkaido.

We also purchased a leaf coaster at Cholon, the cup on top is made from birch by Hokkaido designer Kouta Fukunaga. We nabbed the very last piece on display at HOMES.

Here is a detailed image of the leaf coaster which is made from a real leaf!

This tiny little cast iron spoon will be perfect for salt or spices.

The zelkova wood spoon on the left is currently my favorite wooden spoon, it feels so wonderful in your hand. The little wooden scoop on the right is perfect for tea leaves.

When we visited Kusaka Koushi, the leather studio in Sapporo I just wanted something. This beautiful black leather and brass coin container was just beautiful in person, and it really came in handy carrying change for the subway.

These wooden ornaments were a thoughtful gift from Naoto. It was designed to do a few things, one is a little charm that you tie to your tote bag, but they also can be used a hair tie, or Christmas ornaments.

This is a beautiful rice scoop designed by Makoto Koizumi. It has a layer of unfinished cedar which makes your kitchen smell like a sauna when it hits the steam. You can see in the background that our Japanese spoon collection is getting out of control.

A small bottle of unpasteurized igloo sake.

A gift of coffee beans from Takano Coffee.

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Our last 1.5 days in Sapporo

March 7th, 2011

We arrived back in Sapporo in the afternoon on an empty stomach after a long train ride. We stopped by the hotel to drop our bags off and headed towards the Maruyama koen Station neighborhood to get some lunch at JetSet Cafe, famous for their Eggs Benedict and mid century modern furniture.

The first floor has a little lounge area and a gift shop.

We headed upstairs to find a seat near the window.

The elusive pancake in Japan.

Their logo is an Eero Aarnio ball chair!

The Eggs Benedict came with a side of fries, salad, and creamy pumpkin soup. It really hit the spot.

We headed down the street towards the Maruyama Park in search of “Sabita”. It can be a little difficult to spot but when you hit the park you need to immediately turn right. Down this small street past the American Embassy sits a beautiful 2 story modernist building that you can’t miss.

The interior is bright with white washed pine floors, there is even a cafe on the second floor (oh Hokkaido and your lovely cafes).

This is one of the nicest stores I have ever been to. It had pieces from many artisans I was familiar with and really admire, the types of artists that in many cases don’t ship their designs to customers outside of Japan. We took this opportunity to spend some wedding money and take home some really special pieces that we will enjoy for a very long time.

Of course it would be way too easy to just show them to you now, I think it would be fun to give these special pieces their own post.

Everything in the gallery was beautiful. We were especially taken by this ceramic dish that is then dipped in silver by Andou Masanobu.

Another series of dishes by Andou-san, we have already been working with him on bringing his work to our store!

A beautiful set of 3 nesting lacquer bowls.

Next stop was Cafe Morihiko, which was tricky to find! We walked around and around and finally realized we had been missing the street it was on all along – a lane way of sorts.

It was getting dark and cold outside, but it was warm and cozy in Morihiko.

There are little brass bells to let the server know you’re ready to order.

A cool flip menu.

In usual Morihiko fashion, beautiful ceramic mug and saucers with brass spoons and tiny milk pitcher.

We looked in the display cabinet and ordered this delicious cake to have with our coffee.

Evidence! Charcoal in a water pitcher, get your own at Mjolk.

tea cups and saucers in the walls.

Jacked up on coffee (we have no idea what we had, but it left Juli with heart palpitations and anxiety into the night), we headed up the road to Maruyama department store. Seems like all we do is drink coffee and shop!

Haraiso specializes in Japanese cloth and Furushiki, it’s the same owner as JetSet Cafe.

After shopping we stopped in at an Izakaya that was recommended by our hotel. We were a bit tired and wanted to keep things simple so we stuck with ordering skewered meats.

Pork with onions and side mustard.

Chicken yakitori.

King crab legs with edamame.

And our favorite, bacon wrapped asparagus.

During our last day in Sapporo we got up and decided we wanted to visit Cholon again and have some cheese toast and coffee for breakfast.

We were a little over confident and took a couple of wrong turns before consulting our map (we already thought we knew the city so well). We did manage to find Cholon.

It also gave us a chance to see the store one last time!

On our way back we noticed this cute little bakery.

It was a hip young bakery with all sorts of treats, we asked them what they recommended for us to try and they pointed to full loaves of bread. We weren’t just going to eat a loaf of bread (even though it looked delicious) so we opted for the rabbit shaped bun with custard filling. It was so warm, and so delicious.

The bakery is near Kusaka Koushi the leather artisan studio. We liked seeing the PH5 pendant hanging in the window.

Musica Hall Cafe was the last Cafe we visited in Sapporo. Located on the 3rd floor of the Choi building (Yuichiro Tadokoro cafe and live music venue), this cute cafe has guitars, and pianos set up for evening music performances.

They have a set lunch menu starting with salad.

They gave us a couple of feed sacks to keep our bags off the floor.

The one thing we always end up eating in Japan is Spaghetti with tomato sauce, it is always delicious.

And last but not least is this single scoop of ice cream.

The rest of the day we simply wandered around Sapporo. This impressive building is the former city hall which looks as if it was plucked from Toronto.

We do love Hokkaido, it was an amazing experience being on this trip.

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Last day in Niseko

March 4th, 2011

For our last day in Niseko we knew we had to leave Hirafu, leave the touristy stuff behind and find the real Niseko. We had a lead from our D & Department guide about a coffee shop opened by a young couple called Takano Coffee. The coffee shop is actually located on the first floor of a house and finding it would be a bit of a challenge so we decided to take a cab there. The cab fare was around $35, but it was well worth it.

You turn off a main road onto a small rural road. Takano Coffee is unassuming and you might easily drive right by it, if they didn’t have their sign on the road. Thankfully our taxi driver actually knew what we were looking for!

The walk up to the house to the left onto a dark stained wood deck with piles of firewood.

The surrounding landscape is calming and beautiful.

When you enter Takano coffee you can smell the coffee roasting away behind the counter.

The space is both bright and cozy, the dark stained plywood ceiling matches the dark floors and in the middle of the room, a wood burning fireplace is roaring away.

We take a seat in front of the window with a beautiful view of Mt. Yotei.

We noticed there was a cat theme going on, so we gave the owners our Kitka business card which features a cat knocking over a bottle of milk. We told them we would love to take some photos of the coffee shop and share it with our readers and customers.

The owners of Takano coffee are Hiromi (left) and Daiichiro Takano (right), a young couple from Sapporo who wanted to leave the city for a quiet life in the country. Their house is self built and they live above the coffee shop with their 4 cats.

We loved this kitty cat card holder.

Our coffees arrives in a beautiful bone china set by Sori Yanagi.

We also noticed a Sori Yanagi kettle peculating away on the wood burning fireplace.

We love the little details, the nice wooden tray with ceramic sugar jar and small cream pitcher.

We start to feel a little peckish and inquire about ordering something sweet. Hiromi tells use her husband Daiichiro made the dessert fresh that morning.

Juli ordered the cheesecake.

I ordered the pudding. YUM!

Cat stamp!

We head back to the counter to give our compliments and to order another coffee and notice that Hiromi is reading our blog.

Right behind the counter you can see the coffee beans roasting, the coffee they use is purchased from Hiroguchi coffee in Tokyo.

Our next two cups of coffee come with another individual milk pitcher.

We enjoy our coffees while Daiichiro stokes the fire, it is so cozy in here we could just linger for hours. I think we did actually.

They asked us where we were planning to go that day, and we mentioned we wanted to visit “Yunosato Desk”, an old school that was converted into a wood working shop. The couple offered to phone ahead to see whether or not it was open, but when no one picked up, Hiromi offered to drive us there.

We thanked her for her offer but said we would just take a cab. When she persisted we said yes, and thanked her profusely. Japanese hospitality!

We arrived at the old schoolyard which seemed to be empty, the door was unlocked so we walked inside and found a little note left behind on the floor. If it was just Juli and I we probably would have given up and left, but Hiromi called the number and in a few minutes Mr. Tashiro found us and took us inside.

Of course we had to put our slippers on first.

Yunosato desk is a very interesting wood shop because not only is it located in an old elementary school, it specializes in study desks and stationary.

Everything is made at the school, and sold in this little gift shop.

desk / bookcase.

Bookstands with “Hans J. Wegner’s 100 chairs” by Professor Oda.

They still have the old blackboard and school clock.

I fell for these wooden spoons.

A photograph of the Yunosato Desk collective.

A pictureframe which holds a book, the stand is adjustable so any book will fit well.

A beautiful and simple cherry tray.

After we were finished perusing the shop Mr. Tashiro offered to take us on a tour of the old school. This is where all of the wood finishes are applied, most of them are oils.

The school doesn’t have much heat, so many rooms have their own wood burning stoves, at least there is no shortage of wood here!

We entered the gymnasium where all of the lumber is milled, it was spectacular! Look at all of the live edge timber on the stage.

The Beatles.

A custom burner to emboss their logo on the products they make.

The hallways are so long, and there are so many rooms!

You can still see children’s artwork from the early 90s on display.

Thank you for the tour! We had one more stop to make, for lunch in the countryside, but when Hiromi called ahead, we found out that they were closed. We wanted to buy Hiromi lunch for her hospitality, so she took us to a soba restaurant just outside the main Hirafu area.

Even though this soba restaurant was near Hirafu, it was more of a local haunt.

The space was very warm with soft diffused pendant lights, and a lot of natural wood.

Juli stuck with the classic soba, which is all hand cut.

I got the duck soba, which is their specialty. It was the best soba I’ve ever had!

We were full, and Hiromi offered to drive us to our hotel. It was an amazing day, and it was all thanks to the Takano’s generosity.

Thank you so much!

The next day we got up early to catch the first train, the stations here aren’t run by JR but rather by local homeowners who live above the station and offer a place for travelers to rest. That is a cat peeking over the window.

The train that came was only a single car, and it started filling up each stop. Needless to say this was a long ride back to Sapporo.

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Niseko day 1 and 2

March 3rd, 2011

We arrived in Niseko after a slow two-car local train ride. We had been told to get off at the Hirafu station, which incidentally is in the middle of nowhere and has no station master (just a VERY talkative cat). Thank goodness we had a Japan Rentaphone (highly recommended for times like this) as we were able to call the hotel to come pick us up.

We stayed at the Kimamaya, the oldest house in Niseko recently converted into a modern boutique hotel. They left the old exposed beams in the ceiling, painted the walls black and installed some wooden Finnish pendant lights.

We left our hotel to take a walk around the Hirafu area of Niseko. As you can see, snow removal is a big issue in these parts!

Incidentally, that group of people by the orange sign were having a crazy 1.5 hour long bbq session.

We didn’t really know what to expect, but based on everything we read in Monocle, and the New York times (rated Niseko #12 for top places to visit in 2010) I think we built it up in our heads a bit as some pristine nature hot spot.

First off Niseko is a resort town, you can see the development happening all around you, and it seems that most of the Japanese family run businesses around the ski village have been bought out, and replaced by a lesser authentic version, with fluent English speaking and foreign staff. Having this, for better or worse, gives you a different experience when you’re out and about town.

In the beginning we didn’t really like Niseko that much. No one here is Japanese!

First stop was Tozanken, to satisfy our new ramen addiction. It was praised by the hotel staff as being the best ramen in Niseko. We already had the best, so we did our best to keep our expectations low.

We ordered a couple of Sapporos, and noticed that “Specially made Asahikawa Ramen” was on the menu! That sounds perfect.

The ramen was really good! It wasn’t as good as our experience in Asahikawa, maybe because it was quiet in the restaurant because there was nobody slurping! We decided to slurp away and at the end of the meal Juli casually turned to me and announced “Maiuuuuuuuu!”, a phrase Naoto taught us back in Asahikawa, which is another way of saying “That was delicious” and was coined by a TV chef personality. Our server looked at us in amazement, his face lit up and he said “YES! YES! MAUI! That is awesome! YES!” I think we made his year.

Our bellies warmed, we decided to take a long walk around the ski village.

This is the new modernist hotel that we wanted to stay at. To pricey for 3 nights….

An ice block hut, I wonder if they’ll be making rice cakes tonight?

At least the development happening right now for the most part has a beautiful aesthetic. There are dozens of these black modernist chalets here, I wonder if they are all for rent or if people own them?

A Switzerland inspired hotel, that serves fondue for dinner.

This is our hotel! And attached to it is a french restaurant called “The Barn”.

The walls are made from plywood and hanging above us are huge Caravaggio pendant lights from Denmark. We really enjoy French cuisine so we were looking forward to having a good savoury meal. I ordered the beef cheek, and Juli ordered the duck confit.

The dishes were good, but nothing that spectacular and it was too dark to properly document. We took the night off!

The next day we were determined to spend the morning and afternoon skiing, this is the reason everyone travels here (pardon the switch to iphone photos!).

We started off doing a few runs in the green area, just to loosen up and gain a bit of confidence.

Soon we were becoming a bit more adventurous. Neither of us are pro skiers, but being on a mountain forces you to get out of your comfort zone even if it is only for 50 meters, the higher you go on the lifts the more and more fun you have.

The view of Mt. Yotei.

We gave up skiing after only 4 hours, and headed to the “Abu-Cha Bakery” to get some treats and a coffee. Everything is baked here, and hit the spot.

The coffee came with a cute little wooden spoon.

The interior is warm and cozy with pine paneled walls, and rough timber beams.

At night this place turns into an Izakaya, one of the busiest Izakayas in all of Japan.

We stopped in at the cafe above J Sekka hotel, another modern hotel. Yes, going from one cafe to another is a little excessive but that’s what vacations are for!

This is a great place to try some familiar foods with local Niseko ingredients, but it also has a little grocery store inside.

A taste of Hokkaido.

We opted to have the crab and pork burger with Hokkaido potato fries. It was delicious, but we felt that we should have tried “The Taste of Hokkaido”.

If there was a moment where we started to really like Niseko, it was when we entered Ezo Seafoods. The bar is run by James Gallagher and features Hokkaido sea food brought in fresh daily.

Fresh Akkeshi Oysters and hairy crab.

The space is warm and cozy, the perfect spot after a day of skiing.

Fresh shrimp!

We started with an order of Hokkaido oysters.

My personal favorite was the local Hairy crab which was sweet and delicate, it was perfect without any soy sauce.

The next platter was a daily special, marbled tuna sashimi.

I took it upon myself after talking a bit more with James to order another platter of oysters, these specific Akkeshi Oysters fetch a really high price at restaurants in Tokyo. The one in the photo was the deepest James has ever seen! They were even better than the first platter.

We started talking about why we were traveling Hokkaido, and our store name came up. James gave us the “Drink Milkland Hokkaido” water pitcher to use during our meal.

Juli’s favorite dish of the night was our last dish, a whole fish steamed with garlic and ginger sauce on the side. It was simply perfect.

If you ever visit Niseko, this is a must visit restaurant.

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Otaru Ryotei Kuramure

March 1st, 2011

We got up really early to catch the first train to Otaru, the train quickly turned into a local subway and the seemingly quick trip started to slow down. By the time we reached the Otaru station we were tired and desperately wanted to get rid of our luggage. We found the locker room, but every single locker was taken. We managed to find a baggage service down the street thanks to the helpful tourist office.

After a slow start, we were happy to be in Otaru.

Or we thought we were… It was kind of boring. The historic canal was exactly that, and it seemed tour bus after tour bus dumped dozens of people into the streets. For a good 15 minutes we were stuck walking behind a sea of people.

We knew that Otaru was famous for its glass blowing so we tried to stop by a few studios. The glass wasn’t really our style, and the shops were crazy busy, by this time we were already planning our escape to the hotel.

It did start getting pretty with some nice big snowflakes.

And the chocolate shop LeTAO was giving free chocolate samples on the street–delicious. We debated whether or not to stop in for a hot chocolate but decided to skip it and get into a cab in search of a cafe that Naoto recommended. We were starving.

We got in the cab with our map and showed the location of the cafe and tried to pronounce the cafe’s name. The Tourist office circled where the location was on the map, but we weren’t translating correctly to the cab driver. He couldn’t understand a word we were saying, and we sat there with our phrase book trying to direct him to the cafe on the map. After five minutes of this confused back and forth, we gave up and had him drive us to the train station in defeat. We were fed up with Otaru and wanted to get to our hotel as soon as possible for some food.

When we were first day dreaming about a trip to Hokkaido, Ryotei Kuramure was a hotel we wanted to experience. Designed by Makoto Nakayama, Kuramure is a modern interpretation of the traditional Ryokan. The black exterior contrasted against white snow with a wall of mountains in the background, we stepped out of the cab with smiles on our faces. We do have to thank our immediate family, it took some gift money to pay for our stay here.

A wire cage and rock wall lined the facade of the building.

Our check in at Kuramure was 4:00, but after the big let down in Otaru we showed up at 3:00. We thought we could hang out in the lobby and have some coffee, a quick bite, and the staff would keep our bags for us. When we walked up the stairs to the entrance we noticed that the door was locked, and it seemed the entire hotel was closed. The cab had left, we were stranded in the front of a boutique hotel with a pile of luggage in the middle of nowhere.

It only took a few minutes of waiting around for me to become more adventurous, leaving Juli with our bags to explore the grounds. I eventually discovered a back door that was unlocked. I don’t know where my motivation came from but I opened the door to the kitchen and walked through the expanse and into a hallway. I felt like James Bond a little until I was spotted by a cleaning woman who took me to the lobby and sat me down at the main desk. I was trying to negotiate unlocking the front door to get Juli, but she persisted that I sit down and left me to get the manager. It was at this moment I saw Juli’s legs creeping by one of the low windows, I ran over and started knocking to get her attention. Of course she couldn’t hear me so I tried to gesture to enter through the back door.

We were eventually reunited and asked to sit in this beautiful waiting area, while they decided what to do with us.

Everything was fine, they just weren’t expecting us early. It felt like we had the hotel to ourselves until another couple entered 5 minutes later through the now unlocked front door. They were blissfully unaware of what we just went through trying to get in. We were really hungry so we asked if there was a place to get some food, and the staff pointed us to a ski hotel down the street. It wasn’t that great, but it was enough to get us back in a good mood.

We hit reset on our Honeymoon and arrived back at the hotel at 4:00

The lobby was beautiful with stone floors, wooden tables, and Le Corbusier sofas.

This is more what we expected when we first arrived, a hot towel, tea, and a little candy.


We walked over to the gift display case. I don’t know why we went to Otaru when all of the best things were curated into this little display.

My favorite piece was this mouth blown sake glass with a metal base. It was even better in person, but I couldn’t justify the purchase.

We were guided to our room.

In standard Japanese fashion we took off our boots in the suite’s little entry way.

The walls were soft and felt like paper, there was a good use of diffused light everywhere.

The traditional perfectly contrasted with the modern.

The tatami room.

A traditional Japanese tea set.

The was the main floor of our suite. The chabudai table was right in front of a large window with shoji screens.

The bedroom with dyed linens and a Naoto Fukasawa designed humidifier.

Yukatas and beautiful linen pajamas, sleeping would never be the same.

Our private onsen room.

The bath, toilet, and sink are all separated which really comes in handy.

This was the view behind the shoji screens, serene in the winter I’m sure it is just ridiculously beautiful in the summer.

We love shoji screens.

One detail we really liked were the wooden vent covers, it was a nice contrast from the wall.

After spending a nice amount of time in the room, we put our yukatas on and headed to the Onsen for a long relaxing soak.

Kuramure accepts less than 20 guests at a time, and all meals and drinks are included with the room. I mention the amount of people in the hotel because when we came to the bar it was empty except for the bar tender cleaning glasses. It felt a little like The Shining, just a little.

The liqueur was displayed prominently on top of gorgeous rosewood cabinets, the drinks were free but they didn’t hide the good stuff.

I ordered a Japanese whiskey and a local beer.

Across from the bar there is an incredible library full of design books and an impressive collection of classic vinyl. The bar tender assisted in putting the music on for me. I know how to use a record player… Jeez.

I grabbed a couple of cool looking 1960s albums to play.

I also found an old Kayama Yuzo album that was fantastic.

We sat down with our drinks and just relaxed, we stopped ourselves from ordering another round because we knew we were in for a Kaiseki dinner. A traditional multi-course dinner, alcohol would definitely be served.

We were found and transported to our own private dining room where some sashimi, wild greens, and a very sweet plum based drink were waiting for us.

The sashimi was delicious, no idea what fish it was.

In honor of our wedding, the server poured us 2 glasses of champagne.

He also handed us the course list… Epic.

Local shrimp with lemon.

A warm and soothing pumpkin soup.

Uh oh! More raw fish testicles?! I thought I saw the last of these in Asahikawa.

With the addition of the stone grill we decided to give it another go.

and you know, with some pepper and fresh lemon juice it was pretty delicious. We ate the whole thing.

There is always one delicious dish that plays well into the western palate. This pork stew was that dish, it was superb.

These were cooked oysters.

Tempura tofu, with a green pepper.

White rice, clams, a big chunk of fish, and veggies.

The fish was a bit intimidating, but delicious none the less.

I think that after this we had something sweet, but forgot to photograph it. Oh well!

By this time we were feeling good, and decided to stop by to have a night cap at the bar. Earlier we were so intrigued by this “Milk Liquor” we decided to try it. It’s shochu, but I couldn’t place the taste (a bit like gin?), it was really good.

The next day we got up and headed to the onsen one last time. If you really want to start the day relaxed and feeling super clean we strongly recommend onsens in the morning. When we got back we were escorted to our private breakfast room with an amazing spread of food. It is definitely not brunch, and takes some getting used to but most of the items were tasty. I can say that none of these paired well with coffee.

Sitting in the floor is so nice!

We wanted to have one last quick tour of the hotel before we leave.

Here is the on site Japanese tea ceremony room.

you can actually book an appointment to be a part of one, if we had one more day I would have loved to try it.

Seeing the room is enough for now.

We left the hotel, got on a train and headed to Niseko…

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