A representative winter dish in the San’ in area that is only available between early November to around March 20 every year. Boiled snow crab with vinegar and soy sauce, superbly grilled crab with its savory aroma, simply irresistible hot crab sukiyaki, the luxury of fresh raw crab legs, tempura, gratin, miso soup, porridge, etc. etc… There are a wide range of recipes to use in optimally enjoying the taste of snow crab.
The best season to eat the oysters is summer. Iwagaki oysters are another representative taste of San’ in, along with snow crab. As the name suggests they grow on the surface of rocks to which they have adhered. They are extremely large when compared to cultivated oysters, with everything about them, from taste through to texture, being just perfect.
The most common squid netted in the Sea of Japan is the common Japanese squid, but the most common at Kaike Onsen is the Swordtip squid. The taste is of guaranteed quality, and you certainly won’ t forget it once you’ ve tried it. At night the sea around Kaike Onsen is alive with lights from squid fishing boats reflecting on the surface of the water.
This name was first bestowed upon the crustacean in 2004, with the scientific name being argis toyamaensis, but locally known as “doroebi” or “mosaebi” . They are typically about 10 cm long and very sweet tasting with an elastic texture. Locals consider them a lot more precious than northern pink prawns. However, they really need to be eaten straight away, and thus can only really be fully enjoyed locally. Recipes include sashimi (raw), shioyaki (salted and grilled), karaage (deep fried), miso soup, etc., but they can be enjoyed in many other ways as well! Shioyaki, which enables the crispy heads to be enjoyed as well, is particularly recommended.
The cocktail in the picture won a grand prix in a cocktail competition held in 2004 in cooperation with the Yonago branch of the Nippon Bartenders Association, and is named “a drop of the sea” . The concept incorporates the marine blue of the Sea of Japan which is right in front of the hot spring town. It has an alcohol percent of 9, but thanks to its slight sweetness and pleasant taste it is also suitable also women. Some ryokans without indoor snack or other facilities may not list this cocktail, so ensure to contact them in advance.
Production of Kaike Onsen’ s original Japanese sake “Kaike Onsen - the snow falling on the sea, premium” ? first commenced in 2009 by the youth department of the Kaiki Onsen Ryokan Association in collaboration with rice farmers and sake brewery firms. The youth department participates in the entire process, starting from the planting of rice for sake through to the preparation of brewing, thus making this Japanese sake something that has been carefully nurtured. It is a top notch pure rice-based daiginjo (sake where more than 50% of the rice ingredient gets reduced during the selection process) arare zake (sake made from thin films of rice paste cut into pieces that are then dipped into clear liquor and dried in the sun several times) that has a particularly refreshing texture due to containing soda. It is beloved by sake connoisseurs who call it “Japanese Champagne” , and is available at ryokans throughout the Kaike Onsen area.