KITAKATA | The Atsushio Onsen Yamagataya is one of the several places where visitors to Kitakata can stay and enjoy the relaxing onsen (natural hot springs) that are found in this part of Japan. Inside the hotel are several traditional Japanese-style rooms, onsen for men and women, and a restaurant which serves a varied menu full of local Aizu delicacies.
When we visited, we were treated to a mixture of familiar and unfamiliar dishes as part of the restaurant’s kaiseki (traditional multi-course Japanese dinner) menu. The sashimi here is fresh and delicate, while the pickled vegetables provide a zingy umami burst with each bite. It is here that we were introduced to kodzuyu – a traditional light soup made from dried scallop holdfasts, carrots, mushrooms, konnyaku jelly noodles, and wheat gluten croutons (mame-fu). A very refreshing soup that’s the perfect palate cleanser in between the lighter and heavier dishes.
Speaking of heavier dishes, the horse meat stew is one of the highlights of the menu and utterly delicious – the flavour of the horse is similar to beef, with some of the gamier aspects of venison coming through. Fermented zenmai (cinnamon fern) is another highlight, with a luscious, gelatinous texture that glides down the throat.
Of course, no good meal is complete without a drink, and everything on offer here pairs beautifully with Asahi Super Dry and any number of local sakes.
Fukushima Prefecture 966-0101
Telephone: 0241 36 2288
E-mail: [email protected]
Mon – Sun: 9:30am to 6:30pm