Yuba Lunch in Kyoto with Jim Breen
Yuba Feast with Jim Breen at Kiyomizu Junsei Okabeya (清水順正 おかべ家) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14mm — 1/250 sec, f/20, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Yuba Feast with Jim Breen
at Kiyomizu Junsei Okabeya (清水順正 おかべ家)

I started helping out Australian professor Jim Breen with his edict online Japanese-English dictionary in about 1989 when it had less than 3,000 entries. It has more than 230,000 now. In all the intervening years we'd met in real life only once, about 15 years ago, so I was very happy to meet him for lunch today as he finishes up a long hiking vacation in Japan.

He mentioned an interest in Yuba, so I knew the perfect spot, Junsei Okabeya (清水順正 おかべ家), which I wrote about several years ago here.

It's near the Kiyomizu Temple, so I went there to meet him...

Approach to the Kiyomizu Temple crazy crowded as always -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/3200 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Approach to the Kiyomizu Temple
crazy crowded as always
Quiet Spot Out of the Way Kiyomizu Temple (清水寺) -- Kiyomizu Temple (清水寺) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/3200 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Quiet Spot Out of the Way
Kiyomizu Temple (清水寺)
Meeting Spot -- Kiyomizu Temple (清水寺) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/8000 sec, f/1.4, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Meeting Spot
Kosuke Fukui and Jim Breen I've known both about the same time -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/400 sec, f/3.2, ISO 280 — map & image datanearby photos
Kosuke Fukui and Jim Breen
I've known both about the same time

Kosuke Fukui, whom I've known for about 25 years, fills some of his retirement time by helping out with the business operations at the restaurant, which also produces fresh tofu for other upscale restaurants and supermarkets. That's how I found out about the restaurant in the first place. Anyway, he'd seen my name on the reservation list, so popped over to say high, looking dapper as always. He also appeared on my blog eight years ago.

The Yuba lunch is wonderful, with a rich variety of tofu-based dishes that leaves one a bit overwhelmed as to where to start...

“ Yuba Sakura ” Course ゆば桜コース -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14mm — 1/250 sec, f/20, ISO 6400 — map & image datanearby photos
Yuba Sakura Course
ゆば桜コース
Yuba Factory In Operation -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/400 sec, f/3.5, ISO 200 — map & image datanearby photos
Yuba Factory In Operation

Yuba is very simple... slowly heat soy milk (real soy milk, not the horrible almond-flavored stuff one often finds in The States) until the top forms a thin skin. The thin skin is yuba, and can be skimmed off and eaten directly.

Some patience is required, though with so many other dishes in front of you, you're not at a loss for something to eat.

In our case, six minutes passed between the photo above and Jim taking his first bit of yuba...

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/400 sec, f/3.5, ISO 220 — map & image datanearby photos
That's It read to eat -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/400 sec, f/3.5, ISO 250 — map & image datanearby photos
That's It
read to eat

After stuffing ourselves silly and thanking Kosuke for a fine meal, I thought to pop over to a relatively-unknown cemetery nearby to show Jim its amazing view. I figured it must have had a side entrance near where we were.

Unfortunately, I instead spent 15 minutes demonstrating my inept knowledge of the area's small side streets, and we ended up all the way at the main street at the bottom of the hill.

Oh well, we'll just head in the front entrance to the cemetery, and pass all the way through it to exit near the entrance to the Kiyomizu Temple, which Jim wanted to visit as well.

At the Entrance to the Ootani Honbyo Temple (大谷本廟) (also known as the Nishi Otani Temple, 西大谷) -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/1600 sec, f/2, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
At the Entrance
to the Ootani Honbyo Temple (大谷本廟)
(also known as the Nishi Otani Temple, 西大谷)

(Jim had come by bicycle, so was dressed accordingly, with pantlegs tucked into his socks.)

Inside it was as interesting as always, with a lunar landscape of gravestones....

Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/3200 sec, f/1.8, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Unique -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/2500 sec, f/1.8, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Unique
Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/500 sec, f/2.8, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Walk-Through Maze -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/400 sec, f/5, ISO 140 — map & image datanearby photos
Walk-Through Maze

We got all the way up to the exit at the top of the hill to find it locked, so it turns out that the no passage to the Kiyomizu Temple signs we'd seen at the entrance weren't just trying to keep the riffraff from passing through... there really was no passage.

Part of one hillside had given way during a typhoon at one time or the other, so they closed the area to through traffic.

Oops no through traffic -- Kyoto, Japan -- Copyright 2015 Jeffrey Friedl, http://regex.info/blog/ -- This photo is licensed to the public under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ (non-commercial use is freely allowed if proper attribution is given, including a link back to this page on http://regex.info/ when used online)
Nikon D4 + Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM — 1/500 sec, f/5, ISO 100 — map & image datanearby photos
Oops
no through traffic

We had to head all the way back down the hill, then back up again to the Kiyomizu Temple. All in all my short little side trip ended up being 3.6 hilly kilometers (2¼ miles). Sorry Jim! At least you were well prepared for it having hiked so much in the mountains the past couple of weeks.

Our “ Short ” Side Excursion The restaurant is at the hook in the upper-center-right, and the Kiyomizu Temple at far right. Everything else is my mistake. There's a 50m elevation rise between the left and right sides.
image data
Our Short Side Excursion
The restaurant is at the hook in the upper-center-right, and the Kiyomizu Temple at far right.
Everything else is my mistake.
There's a 50m elevation rise between the left and right sides.

All 2 comments so far, oldest first...

Nice yuba place! Straight to the to-do list 🙂

— comment by Damien on October 10th, 2015 at 9:49am JST (1 year, 8 months ago) comment permalink

Lunch w/ Jim Breen, the Jesus Christ of Kanji Translation. J-nerds take note and stand in awe. Now at age 44 I can appreciate Mr. Breen’s “I don’t give a fudge what the young people are wearing these days” style.

P.S. I’ll be waiting patiently for your blog post with photos of that famous cemetery Okunoin, in Wakayama. -Visited their w/ my wife and in-laws it was incredible.

— comment by Ron Evans on October 13th, 2015 at 1:27am JST (1 year, 8 months ago) comment permalink
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