Eating popular Jidori Sukiyaki with a relish at a thatched house inn.
Text : Nanda Tamada / Photo : Kaina Honma
A northern village in Miyama-cho Chii area has 38 thatched houses and it is designated as an important preservation district of historic buildings. In this area, there is ‘Minshuku Matabe’. It is very hard to make an appointment to stay over night throughout a year, so that we needed to find out what their secret is.
While walking on a country road surrounded by old thatched houses as if it came out of Japanese old folktale, you will get to see an approach with lovely cosmos flowers around. This is the entrance of ‘Minshuku Matabe’. Once you step inside the approach, the elegant thatched house and entrance will welcome you.
Maximum capacity is 14 people with 3 rooms since the house has only a first floor. There is one shared living room at the center of the house with a fireplace and it is the place for tourists who wants to relax and take a slow time.
Now, we’ve been waiting for this dinner time. The menu is a sukiyaki with a free range farming chicken which is locally raised in Miyama area called WABISUKE. At the time that people couldn’t afford to buy beef, they started using chicken instead here in this area. This special chicken is amazingly fresh since it is coming from a farm directly. Therefore, you can also eat some rare parts which you cannot find at the market at all.
A person who cooks chicken sukiyaki for us is Mr. Naoshi Katsuyama, who runs and manages this inn and also works at Kayabuki-no-sato. First of all, he sauted burdock and put sugar, soy sauce, and bonito broth. After this, putting mushroom, Japanese boo choy, tofu, and finally putting chicken organs such as tamahimo and liver.
Using WABISUKE’s raw egg as sukiyaki sauce. We didn’t get any typical smells of raw egg because they feed their chickens only vegetable fodder such as a locally grown rice, herbs, and charcoal. It has a tender texture and the more you bite, the more you taste its flavor. Dipping a chicken meat into the egg sauce is very essential because it collaborates with this rich and fresh taste egg perfectly. There are chicken white meat sashimi, vinegared dish, tempura, dengaku, rice and pickles on the side. We were completely satisfied with this menu which we were able to eat the whole locally grown chicken.
People say that whoever supports this tourism in Miyama is people who live here. Mr.Katsuyama said, “Our mission is to protect this beautiful scenery and also need to let people know its attraction”. He decided strongly to leave its legacy to the future as it is since you can’t find this amazing scenery anywhere in Japan. He also told us serisouly, “First of all, people who live here need to be able to support their lives together. In order to do that, we must excite our tourism business more and more to have visitors satisfy with what we have and also it goes to the protection of its scenery itself”.
A starry sky in Miyama that locals recommend. I would like you to stay one night here and watch this beautiful starry night and relax.
ADDRESS : 25 Shimomaki, Miyama-cho Kita, Nannten City, Kyoto（map）
PHONE : +81(0)071-77-0258
CLOSED : Year-end and New Year holidays
CHECK IN : 2:00 p.m.
CHECK OUT : 10:00 a.m.