(Class bell rings) Welcome to another adventure with Vegan Discoveries class! The Japanese summer is getting ready to kick off so we expect very hot weather and high humidity, but that doesn’t stop us from exploring the depths of Kyoto and coming out with new vegan treats to rant about right? This week’s discovery was nothing short of an adventure, and every minute was worth it. In order to get the experience I am going to share with you in a second, you will have to get to one of the more rural areas of Kyoto. Let me show what you guys are missing out! LET’S BEGIN!
It was a super hot sunny day on our way to The Village, and I hadn’t eaten all day. In order to get there you have to take one of Kyoto’s local trains. (My first time to ride this train actually.) Getting out of the station, your journey is only beginning. The Village is about a 10 minute walk from the station, and the midday hot weather only made it more difficult to reach the destination. But, I know you guys are counting on me to keep discovering delicious vegan eateries for your bellies as well as mine, so I kept pushing forward. I finally make it to the Village, and Tatsu the owner of the establishment led me into this relaxing place. See what I saw!
Before walking in seeing these decorations I knew I was in for a treat!
You could feel the history by the design of the building as The Village is in a traditional Japanese building. But wait, there’s more!
A beautiful seating area with traditional Japanese seating.
Look how relaxing this is! It felt like I was right at home when I settled in. I had to go sit by the window and enjoy the view.
I was so intrigued with Tatsu after I saw how amazing this place was. There was a lot of Japanese traditional knick knacks all around the store and tons of different instruments set in corners. I could just tell Tatsu was an interesting person by what he had decorated around his store. Finding some background information about Tatsu, he has been running The Village by himself for 19 years! He opened close around the same time as The Sunny Place opened up if you remember that discovery class. Tatsu and I both have strong interest in temples and esoteric teachings, so we had a long conversation which led me to finding out why he opened this store in the first place. A couple years before he started running his business, he went backpacking through out Asian countries. When he came back from his trip, he came to the realization he wants to try and leave the smallest negative possible impact on the world. For this reason, he serves vegan food. He is not totally a vegan himself, but for the most part he eats plant based. The food that he serves derives from his backpacking experiences, and as stated before, he does everything by himself! Not only does he run a kitchen during the day, but plays music at night. Not only skilled at cooking, but he DJs and he also plays several instruments. A very interesting guy to talk to and learn something from. But enough about Tatsu, let’s get into the food!
The menu is English friendly and very fitting to the surroundings of the store.
In order to try as many things as possible, I ordered the lunch set which comes with a little bit of everything.
Being it was a hot day, I wanted to quench my thirst with a ginger ale.
She was a bit camera shy please forgive her, but she was happy to share with you guys what she ordered. She decided to go with the green smoothie. We both were very satisfied with our drinks and waited patiently for our food to arrive.
For those who are interested in getting a couple of drinks, he also offers many organic and natural alcoholic beverages.
Midway through our drinks and enjoying the atmosphere, this happened:
WAIT FOR IT…
Hit with a piece of heaven. So many things to eat, Mizuka and I didn’t know where to start!
Starting from left to right, we got a garden salad with a light sesame dressing, daikon, a Japanese root, spread in an ume sauce, a Japanese traditional dish with a mixture of vegetables fried together, eggplant marinated with a tomato sauce, deep fried soy meat, thinly sliced cucumbers with a light dressing, brown rice, soup, and tempeh! That was a mouth full! This was the first time I actually had tempeh in Japan, and it was very good!
And it’s gone like magic! My wife and I felt so good after finally filling our bellies, we could go out and conquer any problems that would come our way! But wait, don’t let me forget we got desert as well! The menu changes with the seasons and what is available to make for the day! Therefore, the desert I got that day can change. Don’t be jealous, your time will come!
It was a gluten free chocolate cake. Let’s take a closer look at this baby:
It had a rich chocolate flavor with a nice chewy texture. This chocolate cake surely had no chance to survive.
Bye bye cake, it was nice while you lasted!
Take a look at my wife’s face, you can tell she really enjoyed the food and the experience.
You can tell right? She gets grumpy when she doesn’t eat, so after the meal was done, She went back to normal.
Tatsu was a greater person than I could imagine and has sparked in me to travel to different parts of Asia I was not planning to visit. The Village is a very relaxing place with great food made by only one man’s hands. It is in the more local sides of Kyoto, but it is definitely worth a visit. Tatsu made me think about what are things I could do to not make a huge negative impact on the world. I am contributing one way by eating a vegan diet, but everything we love and live for is on this Earth, and the better we take care of it, the longer future generations can inhabit it. It is much bigger than we are! On that note class this has been another adventure of Vegan Discoveries!
CLASSED DISMISSED. (bell rings)
Oh, guys I almost forgot, if you have a wife, don’t make your wife wait too long for food, or she might yell at you!
Looking for delicious foods that are made up of no animal products?
You have come to the right place! I am here to help you on your journey while you are here in Japan. I am here to tell you being plant-based in this beautiful country is possible! I, Zane Johnson will be your “sensei”, (Which means teacher in Japanese) who will guide you to the most delicious plant-based spots Kyoto has to offer.
Just to give you some background information on what I can bring to the table, I have been plant based for over a year now, but I have been on and off the plant-based diet for over 7 years! I look forward to seeing you guys in class!
Without further due, class is in SESSION!