KORO-GAKI, THE PERSIMMON’S SWEETNESS IS ENHANCED BY EXPOSURE TO COLD WINDS Koro-gaki, which goes well with Uji matcha, has been loved as a tea confectionery and a good luck charm for the New Year, and has been deeply connected with Uji’s tea culture. Also known as “koromusubaki” or “koro-kaki,” koro-gaki is made from a small astringent persimmon called “tsurunoko-gaki” that dries easily. Produced in winter, the persimmon’s sweetness is enhanced by exposure to cold winds. It is sold mainly from mid-December to about January of the following year, and can be purchased at JA, local tea shops, and supermarkets. If eaten before drinking alcohol, they are said to help prevent a bad taste or hangover. TEA FARM’S TRADITIONAL MEAL “CHAJIRU” “Chajiru” has been handed down from generation to generation by tea farmers as a meal that can be easily eaten outdoors. It is a kind of chazuke (rice with vegetables and dried fish, topped with sencha green tea), but the seasoning and ingredients vary from household to household. It has been recognized as a “100-year food” by the Agency for Cultural Affairs as a “local cuisine that has continued since the Edo period.” In Uji-Tawaracho, this chajiru is used in school lunches as part of efforts to convey the local food culture. UJI TEA —THE THREE TYPES OF TEA PRODUCED IN THIS REGION— Three types of tea leaves are grown in Uji in the Yamashiro area of Kyoto: Uji matcha, Uji gyokuro, and Uji sencha. Uji matcha is made by grinding dried tea leaves into a powder using a stone mortar, etc. It has a rich aroma, little bitterness, and a subtle sweetness. Uji gyokuro is famous as a top-grade tea with a rich aroma and strong flavor. Uji sencha combines a refreshing aroma with a pleasant astringency, and is the most widely consumed of the three tea varieties. EXPERIENCE NATURE IN A FARM GUEST HOUSE In the Yamashiro area, visitors can experience agriculture, forestry, and fishing in the guest rooms of farmers’ homes. In addition to experiencing agriculture, forestry, and fishing, each guest house has its own special features, such as enjoying delicious homemade tea, original guest house cuisine, pottery making, green tea art, and tea incense dressing. These hands-on accommodations allow visitors to learn about the lives of the people of this region amidst beautiful nature and scenery. UJI TEA EXPERIENCE There are both public and private courses in and around Uji City where you can experience a variety of tea-related activities, from tea picking to tasting, grinding stone mills, and making matcha and sencha green tea. Whether you want to learn about tea production methods, tea making, or the spirit and culture of tea, enjoy a tea experience unique to Uji City, the city of tea. THE ISHITERA TEA FIELDS IN WAZUKA, A DESIGNATED HERITAGE SITE The Yamashiro region of Kyoto Prefecture, which boasts approximately 40% of the prefecture’s tea production, is famous for producing Uji tea, a premium brand of Japanese tea, and the valleys and hills in this region are covered with vast “tea fields.” The “tea fields of Ishidera” have been designated as Kyoto Prefecture’s scenic asset No. 1, and have also been recognized as a Japan Heritage site, and can be said to be the “original landscape of tea fields” that always appears in various tea discussions. Kashiwa no sukiyaki Because many families keep chickens in miyama, kashiwa no sukiyaki has been eaten at festivals, or any opportunity where people have congregated, since long ago. It is stewed with seasonal vegetables grown in Kyoto, like bamboo shoots and udo in spring, and matsutake mushrooms, kujo leeks and mizuna in autumn, as well as plenty of kashiwa chicken. Because most families in Kyoto keep chickens nowadays, it is a popular “hospitality” dish for welcoming guests. Chestnut sweets Woodland Kyoto area is also famous for its autumn leaves and Kyoto vegetables. Among these, Fukuchiyama City is also famous for chestnut sweets. They are best eaten as autumn turns into winter. Chestnut sweets fills the shelves in the many Japanese and western sweet shops in the city. As well as Japanese sweets like chestnut yokan and baked chestnut kinton that fill the shelves of long-established Japanese confectionery shops, famous Parisian stores have opened stores in search of Kyoto’s chestnuts, making Kyoto a true treasure trove of chestnut sweets. Would some chestnut sweets go well with your autumn leaves stroll? Boar stew In recent years, “gibier cuisine” has continued to take hold in Japan. Gibier cuisine means eating meat from wild board, deer, and bird game. In Kyoto Prefecture, from long ago there was a custom of eating wild boar, and the botan nabe from the Miyami region, known as “Kabayuki no Sato,” is a famous winter tradition. Wild boar meat is characterized by its fattiness, being rich in collagen, and its beautiful appearance, all of which makes botan nabe a dish you will want to try. Trolley car The trolley car is a sightseeing train which runs the 7.3km from Trolley Saga Station to Kameoka Station in approximately 25 minutes. The course uses the old Sanin Line, passing through eight tunnels, allowing you to fully enjoy the majestic nature alongside the Hozu River valley. You can enjoy the changing scenery of the four seasons, and we in particular recommend the mountain cherry blossoms in the spring and the autumn leaves for nature sightseeing.