Curbside Pick Up
Japanify

Setting the Table for Baba-Chan

Every few months or so, I get a message or comment about how all of the photos I style have the chopsticks facing the "wrong way" and that it's "not truly Japanese." I usually reply simply by saying that I am left-handed. But I think the...

Sake Gumi News

Sake + Water (August 2020)

 Chichibu River, where Katanishi Sake Brewery draws their water Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! Sake is made of about 80% water. The other ingredients are rice, koji, and yeast. Because sake is mostly water, brewers...

Happy Hour

Poolside Cocktails

Let us fantasize for a minute here: we're in the Yucatan, having drinks on chaise lounges by the infinity pool overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. In this fantasy, I have a hot JLo bikini bod. Hell yah! Reality: the "Gulf of Mexico" is actually a kiddie pool I...

Japanify

Yaki Onigiri BBQ

My signature dish for a BBQ has always been Yaki Onigiri (grilled rice balls). It's usually something no one else is bringing, and everyone loves them, from the out of towner in-laws to the cousin's anti-social tween. My mom taught me how to make onigiri. I...

Sake Gumi News

Holy Honjozo! Ginjos + Daiginjos

Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! I’m back! I take over Sake Gumi for Yoko once in a while and am resurrecting mytheme from 2018, Holy Honjozo!. I love honjozos and feel it is...

Casa de Kei Lunchbox

*This week, Casa de Kei lunchboxes will be available for pickup at Umami Mart in Oakland. Pick up times will be Thursday July 9 and Friday July 10 at 12-3pm. Check out his menu on his Instagram page and order with him directly. Keisuke...

Yoko Dreams of Japan

I've been watching Queer Eye, season 5, and have been appreciating all of the inspirational quotes that accent the show. Many seem to center around being in the present, which I'm all for. For example: "You can't start the next chapter if you keep rereading the last one." - Unknown...

Lazyass Cookin

Okonomiyaki Party

Ah, the summertime - here we are, can you believe it? There's something about the heat that makes me crave a gooey okonomiyaki, filled with cabbage and pork belly, oozing with Kewpie mayo and sauce. Crack open a cold beer or get a glass of shochu on...

Sake Gumi News

Sakqueso! (June 2020)

Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with 200 members throughout California. Join today! Ever since I was little, I did not like eggs, milk, or cream, but I always made exceptions for cheese. Who killed JFK? What's really going on at Los Alamos? Why...

Kusa Pote Sara - A Deluxe Potato Salad for Sake

This month we are featuring Female Frontrunners of Sake. These are women who either own or act as the toji (head brewmaster) of their brewery. One of our favorite toji is Miho Imada of Imada Shuzo. She makes the staff favorite sake...

Japanify

Kuma Honey Shrub

Before we sold alcohol at Umami Mart, we had a pretty extensive shrub collection. After we started to see more shrub lineups at other stores, we decided to pare down our shrub offerings – I still love shrub and consume it often. I crave the tartness of the...

Sake Gumi News

Female Frontrunners in Sake (May 2020)

Sake Gumi is our monthly sake subscription service with over 200 members throughout the US. Join today! In a time when nothing seems to be moving forward and we can’t see into the future, I’m pleased to feature four breweries with innovative women...

Ask Sushi Kuni

Kuni's Kitsune Soba

Many of you know that my father Kuni is a chef. Classically trained in Tokyo, he worked in several Japanese restaurants in Los Angeles and the Bay Area before opening his own, Sushi Kuni, in 1994. There, my father made the sushi and my mom Hideko...

Japanify

Japanify: Haigamai Amazake

Lately, amazake (sweet non-alcoholic sake) has been on our minds. It all started on March 1, when we celebrated Girl's Day at Umami Mart and Den Sake was kind enough to make us a batch of amazake for the second year in a...

Japanify

How to Cook Rice on the Stovetop

If you are stuck in a home with no rice cooker, or are caring for a loved one who doesn't have one, I hope this how-to will help you rice-lovers to cope with your rice-related anxieties. I learned how to make rice on...

Sado Tea Ceremony Course in Tokyo

A few years ago, Yoko treated me to a tea ceremony course in Tokyo for my birthday. It was such a special, memorable experience!  Tucked back into the bustling city streets of western Tokyo, we walked to the Akasaka Hikawa Shrine, where they take in about two dozen people, twice...