Gourmet to Savor with All Five Senses in the
Ishizuchi Mountain Range
Mountains that seem to stretch forever in layer after layer… Rivers that flow along murmuring, with pristine waters… Fresh, clear air. Nestled here amid the bounty of nature with its range of faces that change from one season to the next, Ishizuchi Mountain Range gourmet offers treats to be savored with all five of your senses. The dining options here will have you coming back time and again in search of your own favorite location. When mountain climbing, cycling or automobile touring brings you to the area, be sure to make a stop in at one of these spots!
「Ichinotani Yakata」“A refuge for adults” serving
Shamo chicken sukiyaki
Ino-chō Near Kanpū-zan
Hearthside Flavor, Imbued with the Spirit of Mountain Travel
Ichinotani Yakata is a restaurant situated near the Kanpū-zan Tunnel adjacent to the exit to Ino-chō. Nestled at the foot of the mountains that surround it amid expansive scenery, this is a location where the various faces of nature are displayed from one season to the next. Irori hearths line the interior and private rooms afford views of the courtyard garden, making the spot fit to be called a “refuge for adults” with visitors even making special trips from outside the prefecture. Particularly popular is the season when leaves turn color in the autumn, but there are also said to be days in the wintertime with its accumulation of snow when even the staff finds themselves staring transfixed at the covering of snow. To gaze out on the scenery, seated on a zabuton cushion, as you await your meal — this is one among the pleasures on offer at Ichinotani Yakata. How about making a point of making a stop here when you visit the area, perhaps on your way to visit the attractions of Nikobuchi or the Niyodo-gawa River, or the mountains of Iyofuji, Kanpū-zan or Sasaga-mine?
Char-Broiled Shamo Chicken: An Exceptional Treat
The chicken served at Ichinotani Yakata, a special breed of gamefowl known as shamo, features low fat content and a firmness to its bite. Slowly stewed over the irori hearth, the rich umami flavor of this chicken pairs with the accented notes of green onion and burdock as its own juices steep through it, such that each bite seems to intensify the diffusion of its flavor. The shamo chicken sukiyaki course here features seasonal appetizers, a nabe hot pot as main course, udon (or rice) to finish up with, as well as pickled kō-no-mono vegetables, offering a meal of satisfying portions. Another popular item is yudōfu, a dish of warm seasoned tōfu, featuring tōfu made by hand daily taking advantage of a source of water located near the source of the Yoshino-gawa River. Slowly heated over the irori hearth, the yudōfu features a fine texture and mild flavor. This is a dish that constitutes a suitable send-off to end excursions to the Ishizhuchi Mountain Range with, whether traveling with friends, family, a group or so on.
|Address||325-1 Kuwase, Ino-chō, Agawa-gun, Kōchi-ken 〒781-2615|
|Hours||11:00〜20:00 (Until 18:00 in winter)|
|Days||Open daily except Thursdays (unless group reservations are made)|
Michi-no-Eki Tenkū no Sato Sansan 「Sansan Bakery」Sorry if it’s sold out! The much-acclaimed “Golden Pillar” loaf
A Popular Stop While Cycling or Automobile Touring
A bakery of note located in the Michi-no-Eki Sansan district of Ehime Prefecture’s town of Kumakōgen-chō. In Michi-no-Eki there can be found souvenirs and restaurants alike, and specialties from Kumakōgen-chō abound. The bakery’s location facing National Route 33 makes it a popular stop with both cyclists and motor tourists. The most popular option here is the Ōgon no Hashira (“Golden Pillar”), big enough that you will need to hold it with both hands. About 500 are sold daily! Though it may be the size that impresses you at first, once you take a bite you will find it hard to stop… A hint of milk flavor is incorporated into the bread in the form of butter added to the dough, which is baked to perfection in long, braided, cylindrical loaves. Fluffy and moist on the inside, these occasionally come out accented with a certain crispiness. The bakery’s bread comes in a range of flavors, including milk, walnut, fig, chocolate and blueberry, with seasonal flavors offered as well.
Easy Access Along Route 33
This site welcomes many visitors who have come to the area for leisure or the O-Henro pilgrimage and stop in to take a break or enjoy a meal. The popular Ōgon no Hashira (“Golden Pillar”) — a favorite of locals as well — often sells out, so when planning a visit around noontime or later on a weekday, or on a holiday, telephone reservations are recommended. (The bakery’s website lists their baking schedule, so be sure to have a look.) Other popular options include familiar favorites like shio pan (salted buns) and apple pie. An ample range of options are offered, including seasonal goods offered for a limited time making use of locally-grown tomatoes and so on. Visitors who stop by in the morning while going on walking or sightseeing excursions around Kumakōgen-chō are welcome to put in orders to pick up on their way back after the noon hour as well! How about some Sansan bread to accompany you along your way?
|Address||1855 #6 Irino, Kumanokōgen-chō, Kamiukena-gun, Ehime-ken 〒791-1202|
|Days||Open daily except January 1st|
「MARUBUN, original Komatsu location」Soul food, Saijō style: Griddle-cooked spaghetti Neapolitan
Saijō City Urban district
Nostalgic Flavor Cherished by Locals As Well
MARUBUN’s original Komatsu location is found in Ehime Prefecture’s city of Saijō-shi, right next to the JR Iyo-Komatsu station. A famous dish here is their “Teppan Neapolitan,” griddle-cooked spaghetti Neapolitan, long cherished as a soul food staple in the city. It is said that the roots of this dish can be traced to the way the steaming hot iron griddle seemed to be well-suited to laidback Saijō residents, allowing them to enjoy their meals at a leisurely pace. Lightly beaten eggs are first spread on the griddle and over this the spaghetti Neapolitan, which is then plentifully heaped with sausage. In their quest for enhanced sausage flavor, MARUBUN worked with a sausage maker to devise an original production method that would allow the juiciness of the meat to be more fully savored. The sausage recipe is even said to contain Ehime Prefecture’s familiar specialty, mandarin orange juice, as a subtle “hidden accent.” The restaurant manager recommends this approach: First, partake of a generous helping of the sausage, then as the juice of the meat still lingers in your mouth, enjoy a bite of the spaghetti together with it. You may find yourself hooked by the way the rich juice of the sausage comes to blend with the tomato-based Neapolitan sauce…
A relaxed, retro feel and cheerful staff are hallmarks of the restaurant, making it a favorite among locals as well. It tends to get very busy around seasons when many people make return visits to their hometowns, such as the new year, Golden Week and the O-Bon festival. With seating options including places along the counter and at tables with chairs as well as with Japanese style o-zashiki cushions, MARUBUN presents a welcoming space for solo diners and families alike, with the capacity to handle larger groups as well. An increasing number of cyclists have come to frequent the location in recent years. This popular gourmet option is unparalleled in its ability to satiate and uplift cyclists who roll in with empty stomachs having worked up a sweat along the way.
|Address||407-1 Shinyashiki Kō, Komatsu-chō, Saijō-shi, Ehime-ken|
|Hours||11:00〜22:00 (Last order 21:30) Lunchtime: 11:00〜15:00|
|Days||Open daily except January 1st|
「KOCHI ICE Co., Ltd.」One bite and you won’t be able to stay away! A shop with delicious ice cream and fresh air
Ino-chō Along the Niyodo-gawa River
Tosa Jirō Soft Ice Cream to Savor as You Take in the “Niyodo Blue” View
KOCHI ICE is a cafe located along National Route 194 in Kōchi Prefecture’s town of Ino-chō. Offering a captivating panoramic view out over the blue clarity of the Niyodo-gawa River, this is a site where the four seasons with their different flavors flow by at their own times… somewhere to take a break with views of lush spring greenery or the turning leaves of fall, a place to find respite from the heat or the cold in summer or winter. With attractions such as Nikobuchi, low-water bridges called chinka-bashi, and campgrounds located nearby, a good number of visitors stop in at the café while visiting the area for leisure pursuits or automobile touring. A corner of the shop offers local specialty products and souvenirs for sale as well, all personally selected by the staff. Showing plenteous concern for the local Kōchi area, this is a space with a wonderfully warm atmosphere.
Offered in a Tantalizing Array of Flavors, Their Ice Cream is a Big Hit!
The ice cream they are famous for comes in a wide variety of flavors, including seasonal offerings available for limited times only. Recommended the very most highly is their sun-dried salt ice cream made with Kōchi sea salt that has been dried in the sun. Beside the café menu they offer, cup-served items are available for take-out as well. The café accepts online orders as well and serves a range of items beyond ice cream also, including drinks and sherbets made with local Kōchi specialties such as yuzu and other citrus fruits. Be sure to stop by this ice cream shop along the Niyodo-gawa River, nestled among the mountains, where time seems to flow by at a relaxed pace and the air is fresh and clear.
|Address||807-1 Yananosekami-gun, Ino-chō, Agawa-gun, Kōchi-ken|
|Hours||Weekdays: 11:00〜17:00 (Last order 16:30) Weekends/Holidays (Golden Week/O-Bon): 10:30〜18:00
(Last order 17:30) *Weekends/Holidays from December through February: 10:30〜17:00
(Last order 16:30)
|Days||Open daily except 2nd and 4th Mondays (except in July and August) When holidays fall on Mondays at the beginning and end of the year, the shop will be closed on Tuesday instead|