From the backstage of YUBARI International Fantastic Movie Film Festival 2012!

by Kazu

The cinema festival closed on February 26(Sun.) 2012 in Yubari City. 313 films are recommended to nominate and 12 nominee were on the screen.
As a result, "Osaka Gedo(Osaka Scoundrel)" deirected by Mr.Takahiro Ishihara got the Grand Prix in the category of off-theater competition. 
 Hokkaido Governor's award has gone to "Beatles "directed by Mr.Yuichiro Sakashita and the special award from the film committee has gone to "the confession by a skunk kid" directed by Taichi Suzuki.

The audience had the special affection to the festival  hosted by the citizens of Yubari City with the heartfelt hospitality. 
 Each committee member gave the comment on each work very kindly.
The chief of staff greeted and expressed his deepest gratitude for having guests and audience in Yubari City.   

It will be held in Yubari again and every staff member and the audience will be looking forward to visiting the city again!


Hokkaido Burger GrandPrix 2012 was held in Iwamizawa Heavy Snow Festival.

by Kazu

Repeatedly hit by record-breaking heavy snow, DOKAYUKI( which means heavy snow in Japanese ) Festival was held on February 18(Sat.)and 19(Sun.) hosted by the Municipality of Iwamizawa, Chamber of Commers et al. 
 In this festival, Hokkaido Burger Grand Prix attracted many citizens and guests from other part of the islands. If you give it a whirl, you can save quite a bundle on the bill for enjoying original hamburgers in each area of Hokkaido. Smarting  from how much points should be given to which burger, you will be filled with the delicious burgers and will have to shrug off the fastidious people. 
Betsukai Town was selling "Jumbo Scallop Burger" and hot milk.
Other than that, Yubari City, Fukagawa City, Bihoro Town, Bibai City, Nayoro City, Kuriyama Town, Shiraoi Town, Kamifurano Town, Otaru City and Iwamizawa City set the vendors on the site.
 The number of the people in front of each vendor does not express the popularity nor the total score in this competition.
 Iwamizawa City sold pheasant cutlet burger.
Are these burgers popular in your city or town?
I am not sure which vendor made this burger now.
I think this burger is my wife's favorite in this competition. Is this a Kuriyama burger ?
If I commit the sin of postinging misinformation, please right the wrong and excuse me;)

Back pain is still your pet peeve, Norm?
Please don't forget the onsen in Hokkaido and its effect on your back and heart.  


YUBARI Fantastic Movie Film Festival !

by Kazu

International Fantastic Cinema Festival has started on Februay 23(Thu.) in Yubari City, Sorachi sub-prefectural area, Hokkaido.
It is held every year in Yubari City.
 Grand Prix  1
 Special award 1
 Governor's award 1
Sherlock Holmes "Shadow Game ", "We were there", "Bad teacher", "The forest of the day after", "Ultraman Saga", "Help!", "Author is not identified", "Sowing Traveler", "Le Chat botté(Puss 'n Boots )", "Margaret Thatcher- Tears of Iron Woman " are invited this year. 
I am not a fussbudget about movie films but this time I will have to pull out all the stops to select the movie to watch. 
 As you may know, the municipality of Yubari bankrupted in 2007. The citizens were smarting from the the fact and downgraded administrarive service. It is on the way to recover.Fastidious accountants are required and actually many staff has been dispatched from Hokkaido Government and  The Metropolis of Tokyo to help the municipality.
These are the mascot of Yubari City named "melon bear" but I can not gaze at their face for a minute because ??????
 They may scare you in nightmare.
More poer to the creature!


For special guests, in KURIYAMA Town, Sorachi sub-prefectural area

By Kazu
I never lie on the job but I would like to introduce a special space hidden in the snow as my first workload of today.
If you miss this sign on the road in Kuriyama Town, Sorachi sub-prefectural area, Hokkaido, you will not encounter the specialty of the core part of Hokkaido.
The name of the Japanese restaurant is AJIDOKORO which takes 1 or two party in a day and requires reservation on the phone by 2 days before the lunch or dinner.   
It is almost impossible to find this sign in front of the restaurant. 
Apparently, it does not seem like a restaurnat. It looks normal residence in Hokkaido. 
In winter, the gate road is covered with reed blind.
 The entrance is covered with linen curtain.
 In the night, garden stone lantern is giving a slight indication of hospitality.
I will take you in the year of 2013, Kathleen, Alan, Kurt, Tanya and Arvo.
Of course, Norm should visit us again and have a dinner with us.
This restaurant absolutely live up to its reputation and my comments.
Small sculpture of cat which is inviting guests, treasure and happiness greets the guests.
This is the room next to the entrance. Very warm atmosphere lies in wait.
This is the space in front of the party room.
And after having look at the subtle lighting in the hallway below, cosy party room invites the host and special guests. 

 Atmosphere of trust and autonomy is in the room and particularly in the alcove.
A Chinese sculpture is at the window.
 We do not have to look the bill over our shoulder. The prices are reasonable. Today's course is 5,500 Japanese yen.
 Kobayashi Brewery Company headquartered in the same town is providing this restaurant with the best sake.

 Wine sourced locally satisfies the guests as well as Japanese sake. 
The starter is green soy beans curd with string bean for salad in broth. Soy beans cake topped with peanuts is beside.  
 ARABASHIRI is today's special drink. Only 2,000 bottles are produced in a year because it requires thorough temperature control in small tank during brewering.
ARABASHIRI means "not squeeze but just percolate naturally". It cntains the soul of the brewerer.
With the first chug-a-lug of ARABASHIRI, crab meat cake and sea weed in broth warmed us up. 

Sashimi of sea bass and boiled herring roe came with ginger and cucumber.

 Grilled cod-like fish is best match to the sake.

 Crams are boiled in broth and soy-sauce-based soup.

Rice ball flavoured with vinegar and broth is topped with salmon and came with pickled aubergine. 
 The dessert is superb but I could not get the recipe from the chef.
Japanese green tea is ease the pain in our life. 
We really enjoyed the special dinner and the produce and products in Kuriyama Town.
Thank you very much, Mr Tsubakihara.
Japanese restaurant Ajidokoro is quite an asset of Hokkaido. 


Do you know Nanporo Town in Sorachi sub-prefectural area ?

by Kazu
Sorry for failing to update for a week!
Korean "kimuchi", spicy pickled Chinese cabbage,  is also popular even in Japan.
Mothers in Nanporo Town are exerting their effort  to deliver the delicious kimuchi and other local products  to all over the world.
They use Chinese cabbage and normal cabbage to make kimuchi.  
These are the kimuchi made of normal cabbage. Different form kimuchi made of Chinese cabbage, it can be said that it's "crispy".
Of course, normal type kimuchi made of Chinese cabbage is sold in the market in the town.
"Purple dew" is the name of the drink made of the leaves of labiate.  This is good for the splitting-head of hangover.

This is the scenery from the tower of bus depot in Nanporo Town.

Lanterns in bus depot are like tents of native Americans.

 The bus depot has a diner that serves kimuchi noodle soup Ramen. The broth is not so strong but that allows fermented soy-beans paste Miso and kimuchi to appeal its fertile taste.
 The noodle is not so thick but hit the good balance with the soup.
The bus depot in Nanporo Town has the tower and conference rooms available for the citizens. City planning is very important. To think out of the box, it is recommended to go up to the top of the tower and look down the town;)