March 28

Shiba Inu Rice Balls

I don’t usually crave a quarter pounder of rice and seaweed in the middle of my day, but if I knew one of these was in my brown bag, I’d be counting the minutes ’til lunch. • Jonelle Patrick writes mysteries set in Tokyo. Nightshade is the first one…

March 24

Where To Take The Best Cherry Blossom Photos In Tokyo

You know those “Top Places To See Cherry Blossoms In Tokyo” websites that always tell you to go to Ueno Park? Well, this is how Ueno Park actually looks during cherry blossom season: Lots of great flowering trees, not such great photos. The places on those lists do deliver the cherry blossoms, but if you want photos that […]

March 23

Death By Food Stylist

Is it just me, or does this omelet kind of look like it was on the losing side at the Battle of Sekigahara? • Jonelle Patrick writes mysteries set in Tokyo. Her fourth book – Painted Doll – is just out in paperback 

March 21

Tamao Shigemune: Modern Kimono To Die For

So you think you can’t rock a kimono because you’re not Japanese? Think again! Tamao Shigemune designs modern versions of traditional Japanese women’s wear with a distinctly Parisian twist, and guess what? You can see them (and try her new summer collection on!) right now in Tokyo, through Sunday March 26th. Tamao Shigemune will be showing her collection at that […]

March 15

What’s Blooming In Japan Right Now?

So, around this time of year, I get to thinking about how everybody is about to crowd into Japan to see the fluffy pink things, but that cherry blossom season is far from the only time that this place delivers yowzah-level flower extravaganzas. So I made a thing. Here’s what’s blooming when, and the best places to take photos […]

March 14

In Which We Encounter Japanese Engineering At It’s Finest

It’s always reassuring to know that the Tokyo subways are state-of-the-art. • Jonelle Patrick writes mysteries set in Tokyo. Her fourth book – Painted Doll – is just out in paperback  Watch the one-minute trailer (1:04)

March 09

Lost In A Forest Of Blooming Plum Trees

Yesterday I got to stumble around doing a 360˚ gawk in a forest of plum trees wearing all their favorite clothes at once. Kairakuen Garden in Mito was planted by a genius of a daimyo who totally got that too much of a good thing is never enough. 2,490 fluffy-branched trees later, I think I can safely say that this is the plum blossom extravaganza to end all […]