In Japan there is a saying, "Nihon no kokoro, asoko ni naru," or Japan's heart is in the countryside. Our aim is to help visitors to Japan get beyond the country's big cities of Tokyo and Osaka and urban cultural centers of Kyoto and Kanazawa and into the countryside. There they'll find a uniquely beautiful landscape of seas and mountainous islands that change in appearance according to four seasons, traditional ways of life with distinct regional differences, and people who are bringing new life to Japan's rural heritage.
We believe that the best way to tell the story of Japan’s countryside is through its food. Japan’s food culture is one of the country's most important cultural assets and was designated an Intangible Cultural Heritage by UNESCO in 2013. And more simply, we love to cook and eat. We're constantly roaming the countryside to find new foods to taste and ingredients to cook with, and along the way are having wonderful experiences we want to share with you through this website.
As a resident of Japan since 1991, Tom was a passionate home cook and traveler while also serving for many years as the Asia Pacific region head for a major global financial information services firm. Upon retirement, he has combined his hobbies, professional skills, and love for his adopted country to help non-profit organizations, country towns, and villages in Japan develop strategies to preserve the country’s rural heritage and achieve sustainable economic growth.
Yasu is a food professional who worked in the industry for over 30 years as a chef in a variety of restaurants in Kobe and Tokyo and as a food coordinator for Japanese publishers. Nowadays he spends most of his time cooking for friends, as food for him is about bringing people together and enjoying life. He describes his style of cooking as sosaku ryori, which literally translates as creative and original cooking, but in his mind means that he can make a great home-cooked meal out of any ingredients at hand.
Nancy is Co-Director of the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science and Librarian Emeritus at the State University of New York at Buffalo. She has always done free-lance editing on the side because of her love of the printed word. This includes supporting Oishi So Japan by helping us say what we mean, clearly, grammatically, and without errors, and by letting us know whether our stories make her think it’s time for another trip to Japan.