At restaurants in Kotohira you can eat famous Kagawa dishes such as Sanuki Udon, Japanese confectionery, garlic and other dishes using local specialties. This time we will introduce our 3 most recommended famous dishes out of all of these.
Confectionery such as Manju and Mochi
There are a lot of long-standing Japanese confectionary stores lined up in Kotohira, Kagawa. Among these, on the shrine path one of the famous tourist spots, Kotohiragu, there are stores that are over 100 years old lined up. The reason that there are so many stores lined up at this location is that there are 785 stairs to climb in order to reach the Kotohiraguu main temple building, and they are said to be places for the temple visitors to take a break. Therefore, these stores have a high reputation for healing the tiredness of the temple visitors with their sweet confectionary.
The confectionery includes various types of Manju, Mochi, and Yokan (Sweet Bean Jelly), etc. Prices vary from store to store but are usually about 100 yen for a single item and 1000yen for a set with green tea (Information accurate on July 2019).
One store we recommend is Kyuman Hompo Ishidan-Ya where “Kyuman”, excellent confectionery that was presented to the imperial household, can be eaten. Others include the famous store Naniwadomochi store, where White, Mugwort, Millet, Foxtail Millet, and Black Soybean Mochi can be bought in a 5 flavour set “5 Coloured Mochi”, and Henkotsuya where soft, yellow Manju that goes well with the simple taste of Azuki can be eaten.
Kotohira is said to be “the origin of Udon stores”, and became famous as the town that spread Sanuki Udon nationwide. Due to this, there are a lot of famous Sanuki Udon stores in this area. Among these, “Konpira Udon” and “Tentekomai” that have been open for over 50 years, and “Udon-ya Inoue” that opened in 1989, are some of the famous ones.
There is a wide variety of Sanuki Udon. For instance, Udon covered with Dashi soup stock called “Bukkake Udon”, and Udon with egg and Mentsuyu mixed in called “Kamatama Udon”. Some others include. Udon with soy sauce poured directly on it called Shojoyu Udon can also be eaten in Kotohira. Prices vary depending on the menu item, but the prices are reasonable, starting at 400yen. (Information accurate on July 2019).
Konpira Garlic is a specialty of Kotohira, Kagawa prefecture. It is large and white, has a particular appearance and is said to be nutritious. It is used in various dishes such as curry, and in seasonings such as soy sauce and miso. The curry that uses Konpira Garlic can be eaten in hotels such as “Sakura no Shou Kotohira Grand Hotel”. If you want to try it without staying at the hotel, we recommend the ready made ”Konpira Garlic Curry” that can be reheated in the microwave. The price is about 600 yen and can be bought at souvenir shops and hotels in the town (Information accurate on July 2019).
Furthermore, we recommend the seasonings “Garlic Musume” and “Garlic Samurai” as souvenirs. It is a fine item that will bring out the flavours of your cooking with the garlic fragrance, and it goes very well with meat or fish.
Garlic Musume costs around 1,400 yen while Garlic Samurai costs around 1000yen. (Information accurate on July 2019).