Himeji: Exploring Local Cuisine, Restaurants, and Traditional Recipes

Himeji: Exploring Local Cuisine, Restaurants, and Traditional Recipes

Himeji: Exploring Local Cuisine, Restaurants, and Traditional Recipes

Welcome to Himeji, a city known for its stunning Himeji Castle and rich cultural heritage. While exploring this beautiful city, don't miss the opportunity to indulge in the delicious local cuisine. Himeji offers a wide range of traditional dishes that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. From savory treats to mouthwatering sweets, here's a guide to help you navigate Himeji's culinary delights.

1. Himeji's Iconic Dishes

When visiting Himeji, there are a few must-try dishes that showcase the flavors of the region. One such dish is oshizushi, a type of pressed sushi made with fresh, seasonal ingredients. The sushi is carefully layered in a wooden mold and then compressed, creating a beautiful presentation and enhancing the flavors.

Another local specialty is akashiyaki, a type of savory pancake made with octopus and topped with a sweet and savory sauce. These bite-sized delights are a popular street food in Himeji and are perfect for snacking on the go.

Finally, be sure to try Kobe beef, which is known for its exceptional tenderness and marbling. While Himeji is not in the Kobe region, it is easily accessible, and many restaurants in Himeji offer this prized beef on their menus.

2. Local Restaurants

When it comes to dining in Himeji, you'll find a range of options to suit every palate. Here are some recommended restaurants to visit during your stay:

  • Restaurant Ajihei: Located near Himeji Castle, this cozy restaurant specializes in traditional Japanese cuisine, including local Himeji dishes. Their seasonal menu features the freshest ingredients and showcases the flavors of the region.
  • Kaiseki Restaurant Chouei: For an authentic kaiseki dining experience, head to Chouei. This fine dining establishment offers meticulously prepared multi-course meals that highlight the essence of Japanese culinary artistry.
  • Yakitori Bar Toriki: If you're a fan of grilled skewers, Toriki is a must-visit. This cozy izakaya offers an array of mouthwatering yakitori options, along with a variety of other grilled and fried dishes.
  • Yabu Soba: Soba noodles are a Japanese staple, and Yabu Soba is renowned for its handmade soba noodles. Choose from cold or hot preparations and enjoy the unique texture and flavor of these buckwheat noodles.
  • Yakushika: For a taste of Himeji's fresh seafood, head to Yakushika. This seafood restaurant offers a variety of dishes featuring local catches, including sashimi, tempura, and seafood hot pots.

3. Traditional Recipes to Try at Home

If you'd like to bring a taste of Himeji back home with you, here are a couple of traditional recipes to try:


The delicate flavors of chawanmushi make it a popular choice for appetizers in Japan. This steamed egg custard dish can be made with various ingredients, but here's a traditional recipe:

  1. In a bowl, mix 2 eggs, 300ml of dashi stock, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon of mirin.
  2. Add fillings such as cooked shrimp, shiitake mushrooms, and ginkgo nuts to individual heatproof cups.
  3. Pour the egg mixture into the cups, covering the fillings.
  4. Place the cups in a steamer and steam for about 15 minutes over medium heat until the custard is set.
  5. Remove from heat, garnish with a sprinkle of thinly sliced green onions, and serve hot.

Matcha Parfait

Indulge in the flavors of matcha, a finely powdered green tea, with this delightful parfait:

  1. In a tall glass, layer vanilla ice cream, matcha-flavored soft serve, sweet red beans, and crushed rice crackers.
  2. Repeat the layers until the glass is filled, ending with a generous dollop of matcha-flavored whipped cream on top.
  3. Garnish with a sprinkle of matcha powder and enjoy this refreshing and delicious Japanese dessert.

With these recipes, you can savor a taste of Himeji's cuisine wherever you are.