Rice is the staple food for Japanese. Rice is said to have more than 20,000 species from all over the world. The characteristic of the "Japonica rice" which produced in Japan is its rounded oval shape, stickiness and lustrous. Today, we are going to introduce the popular Japanese rice species which mainly consumed in Japan. Please taste carefully and experience the taste when you are eating Japanese rice!
First place in terms of the total planting area! "Koshihikari" which is characterized by stickiness and lustrous
“Koshihikari (コシヒカリ)” is the Japanese rice which is a representative in Japan. It was originally planted at Fukui Prefecture, however is produced all over the country including Kyushu, Kansai, Kanto, Tohoku presently except Hokkaido and Okinawa. The features of “Koshihikari” are sticky and shiny luster. The smell of rice is good, however is more suitable to be served together with heavily seasoned dishes since the taste of “Koshihikari” is stronger than other species. For example, it might not suitable for Donburi (Bowl rice with dishes on top) beef rice and Tendon (Rice topped with Tempura) because the dishes doesn’t required stickiness of the rice. Due to the boom of Japanese food, “Koshihikari” is started to be planted at overseas such as United State.
"Hitomebore" which is characterized by soft texture and slightly larger size
"Hitomebore (ひとめぼれ)" with the second highest production after “Koshihikari”. It was developed in Miyagi Prefecture as an evolved species of "Sasanishiki" after the cold weather disaster in 1993 and is currently produced mainly in Tohoku including Miyagi prefecture and Iwate prefecture. The characteristic of this species including the lustrous and moderate stickiness, and the grain is slightly larger and soft. It is said to be a balanced rice species comparing to Koshihikari since the taste is milder and compared to Koshihikari, the mouthfeel is mild and with friendlier taste.
“Hinohikari”, a representative rice species of Kyushu
"Hinohikari (ヒノヒカリ)", which is in the 3rd place ranking in terms of the total planting area. Even though it isn’t the major species in Kanto and Tohoku area, it is planted widely in Kyushu, Shikoku and Chugoku area. “Hinohikari” was developed in Miyazaki Prefecture after the request of "Please also produce a rice species which is loved by all Kyushu residents" was voiced out. The taste is said to be similar to Koshihikari, which is in smaller size and high stickiness, however the price is more affordable than Koshihikari. It is user-friendly specie which is suitable for any dishes preparation.