Kanazawa has a successful Japanese sake production industry, as the area is rich in rice and clean water. Here are 5 restaurants where you can enjoy the sake and delicious cuisine of Kanazawa.
Totoro has a peaceful interior with relaxing seating options, including a forest-themed private space, hori-gotatsu (a low table over a hole in the floor) and a counter. This restaurant mainly offers Japanese cuisine, though dishes of homemade 100% domestic soybean tofu are their specialty. There are 40 different types of sake from all around Japan. The Japanese sake taster course (900 JPY (excl. tax)) allows you to choose three types of sake out of five selected brands. This is recommended for those who are not used to drinking Japanese sake, as you can try various flavors.
2. Oidemasshi Shun no Zen
Kanazawa is a city in Ishikawa, which was once called Kaga. Kaga cuisine is what the regional cuisine is called and it's known for its luxurious arrangement of the riches of both the soil and the sea. Oidemasshi Shun no Zen offers 40 different types of sake from Ishikawa with traditional Kaga cuisine. The taster set (1,150 JPY ~ 1,550 JPY (incl. tax)) is especially recommended, as it includes three types of sake from famous brands made with different production processes, like yamahai junmai, ginjikomi junmai, and junmai daiginjou. Enjoy rare and delicious sake.
Naminohana, is a restaurant that offers Kanazawa Jiwamon cuisine, a local cuisine of Kanazawa with fresh ingredients. Jiwamon, in the regional dialect, means a side dish of rice or of local ingredients. The banquet course (3,780 JPY ~ 5,940 JPY (incl. tax)) is recommended to fully enjoy this local cuisine since it uses seasonal ingredients. An all-you-can-drink option can be added for 1,944 JPY (incl. tax). This restaurant also offers various types of Japanese sake made in Ishikawa for 680 JPY ~ 842 JPY (all incl. tax) per glass.
4. Anyato Kanazawa Katamachi Branch
Anyato Kanazawa Katamachi Branch is a restaurant with a classic Japanese interior inspired by Kanazawa Castle. The food offered in this restaurant is called Neo-Kanazawa cuisine. The menu includes various original dishes made using fresh seafood from Kanazawa Harbor and other areas of Japan, and using vegetables from Kaga. The Sashimi Treasurebox (1,880 JPY (excl. tax)) is a highly recommended dish with a beautiful arrangement. This restaurant offers local Ishikawa sake and high-quality sake of the Hokuriku region. Currently there is a campaign wherein barreled sake stocked in the corridors of the restaurant is offered without charge.
Maguroganchi is a restaurant specializing in delicious tuna dishes. Their 3-piece sashimi set (1,100 JPY (incl. tax)) includes red meat tuna, medium fatty tuna, and fatty tuna. The rare tuna platter (1,480 JPY (incl. tax)) can also be enjoyed. This restaurant offers many types of local sake from Ishikawa. Please find your favorite sake to best suit the tuna dishes. Incidentally, the word Ganchi means crab, and crab cuisine is also offered in winter during the crab season.
We recommended tasting small portions of various high-quality brands, as Kanazawa has many kinds of delicious local sake. For snacks, try some local food like jibuni, a chicken dish with seasonal vegetables, sudare-fu (a local specialty food made with seitan) cooked in thick sauce, or kaburazushi, fermented sushi with salted turnip and yellowtail.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.