The Ume-shu (plum liqueur), we made last year turned 1 year old and finally become ready to drink, so I hosted Ume-shu dinner party the other day. It was such a lovely celebration with the wonderful Team TOIRO and friends.
We tried our 2018 Ume-shu and Kinkan-shu (kumquat liqueur), plus my 2012 vintage Ume-shu (2 kinds: one of them was made with Okinawa black sugar).
Everybody tried different kinds in different ways. The basic way of enjoying Ume-shu is on the rocks. It’s also nice with sparkling water and ice.
I also made different dishes to enjoy with Ume-shu.
Miso-Marinated Cream Cheese on Watermelon Radish
Market Crudités with Firefly Squid Dipping Sauce and Kanzuri Shuto
Time for the donabe main courses. I made Sesame Miso Hot Pot with Tasmanian Ocean Trout and Hokkaido Scallops. To finish, a couple of slices of butter was dropped to the broth.
We had our first collaboration donabe cooking class event with Chateau Hanare on May 25, and it was a big success! Chateau Hanare is a Japanese restaurant, located next to Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood. It’s a beautiful place and they serve authentic Japanese food in an elegant setting. I’ve been a fan of this restaurant since they opened last summer.
The 20 seats filled up immediately after the event was announced a couple of weeks prior, and by the time of the event date, there were about 50 people on the waiting list. We are so grateful for such demand and are sorry to those who couldn’t get in this time. But, we want to do this again.
We made 5 different dishes, all in donabe! The class was done in a demonstration style, so the guests could sit back and enjoy learning these donabe recipes. We also enjoyed many interactions with the guests.
After all the dishes were made, all the dishes were served in courses and everybody enjoyed the lunch.
Here’s my oil sardine donabe rice. I’m glad everybody liked it! Here’s the entire menu of the class.
Homemade Soft Tofu with Mushroom Ankake Sauce. Sake-Steamed Clams and Vegetables Hot Pot of Meat, Seafood & Assorted Vegetables in Hatcho Miso Broth Oil Sardine & Ginger Rice Hojicha Custard Pudding
Chateau Hanare’s executive chef, Abe-san was truly a master! I really enjoyed cooking with him. The class was so much fun, and I look forward to another collaboration with Chateau Hanare!
Last Saturday, April 13, we launched Made In Gifu: Traditional and Modern Crafts from Gifu Japan. We hosted an early evening reception to celebrate the launch of this special collection, and so many people come to the event!
Many were already waiting outside before the reception started.
The event was filled with so much love and happiness by the wonderful people.
We want to thank everyone who came to the even to show your support to us and the wonderful crafts from Gifu. Thank you! Made In Gifu Collection is now available both in our website and West Hollywood location. Availability is limited, so please check them out now!
Since we opened our brick-and-mortar shop last October, we hosted our first big festival on March 4 (Sun). We called it TOIRO Spring Festival. We offered spring theme menu to sample and celebrated the new season with people who attended. At the event, we had special guests from Japan, people behind Stork Rice, from Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture. Their rice is very special and we were so excited to feature Stork Rice at the event.
It was a day after Hina Matsuri (Girls Day in Japan), so we also had a traditional display of Hina Matsuri. It was a special kind Saori has taken over from her mother.
We are a team of 6 girls…Yuko, Hiroko, Fumi, Saori, Miki, and I. We prepared everything from scratch in our tiny kitchen. With 3 units of Kamado-san, we cooked so many batches of rice all day to make so many onigiri (rice balls)!
Hundreds of people showed up to the event to celebrate with us, learn and support the wonderful Japanese food culture. The shop was so packed the whole time and people kept coming in!!
Luckily, we had a handful of volunteers, including Miki’s sweet husband and daughter, Aria!
We were so happy to see everybody’s smile and also so touched by all the support we received by them. What a happy donabe event it was! We made almost 500 onigiri, and all were gone by the end!
I was having so much fun!!
TOIRO Spring Festival
Sunday, March 4
1 pm – 4 pm
Onigiri with Natural Stork Rice & Mochi Mugi Barley