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Monthly Archives: April 2009

Café Chagall

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the cafe

The store front next to the shrine.

Author: Miree

Tokushima-shi Toori-machi 2-15


What happens if you wander around the city with your parents and it is four in the afternoon? Well, your father may ask you where he can get a coffee and cake like he is used to in his home country. And as you walk through small streets heading for the station, because you know three coffee shops near them, your father suddenly stops and points his finger to a small Cafe, which you have passed a million times but never seen.

The store is filled with wooden chairs and furnishings, giving it a very homely atmosphere.

The store is filled with wooden chairs and furnishings, giving it a very homely atmosphere.

The outside is really simple and almost invisible, but when you step inside it is a lovely, warm but small place. Wood everywhere, nice paintings on the wall and a mini garden in the middle. As you sit down, a friendly lady approaches you with the menu and the bait is the cake set.

For 700 yen you get one coffee, and what else? Right, a piece of cake! Chocolate or cheese cake or others. They are not handmade but delicious enough. The coffee is quite good. I had Wiener coffee, which makes the cake set a 750 yen price. We sat next to the garden. Or should I say window to an outside world. A few cats were in this small place and it was an open place but no connection to the inside. Hard to describe. I want to go again and see it at rainy times.

The interior is as described, woody and looks old but comforting. Its clean and has a nice atmosphere, like your grand parents garden house. The pictures on the wall are changed by the owner by season and are inspired by the works of Chagall. The lady said, she likes Chagall so much that she named her Cafe after him.

Standard Coffee is 400 Yen, special selection going up 450 Yen.

They serve breakfast as well.

Just a 7 minute walk from the station and next to the Kotoshironushi Shrine.


Tokushima Prefecture Homepage Photo Competition

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Good news for avid photographers in Tokushima Prefecture.

In October this year, the Tokushima Prefecture homepage is going to be updated, and along with it a total of 30 photos are wanted for use on the main homepage.

The information that follows is a translation of an announcement on the Tokushima Prefecture Homepage.

Number of Places

A prize of roughly 3,000 yen in value will be given to winning submissions, in the form of local goods.

Photographs focusing on culture, tourist spots, local goods of Tokushima Prefecture. Subjects might include Awa Odori, Ningyo Joruri, the Naruto Whirlpools, Mt. Tsurugi, the Iya Vine Bridge, sea turtles, sudachi, etc.

How to Submit
Fill out your name (氏名), age (年齢), address (住所), phone number (電話番号), photo title (作品タイトル), location of photo (撮影場所), name of subject (被写体名), date the photo was taken (撮影年月日), purpose of the photo (within 30 characters – in Japanese) (撮影のねらい), whether the photo may be trimmed to size or not (トリミング等お任せの有無) and send via email or by regular mail with a CD to the address below.

〒770-8570 徳島市万代町一丁目1番地

〒770-8570 Tokushima-shi, Bandai-cho 1-1
Tokushima-ken Kikaku Soumubu Hisho-ka Koho Kocho Tanto

Tel: 088-621-2014

Submission Deadline
August 31, 2009

Check out the homepage for the application forms and email address to send you submissions!

KAIR Fund Raiser Concert

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KAIR Fund Raiser Concert

This Friday, April 24th local residents Josh McClain, Shawn McGinn and Ai will be performing a selection of cello, guitar, trumpet, voice and electronica music from a variety of forms and styles in support of the Kamiyama Artist in Residency Program. The concert is set to take place at P’s Paradise (see below) in Tokushima City, and entry is just 1,500 yen with one drink included.

Doors open at 19:30 and the concert starts at 20:00.

For those with a facebook account, the concert has been registered here as an event. Check it out for details and a high resolution copy of the poster.

See you there!

Natura Gelato

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The storefront and deck area by the river.

The storefront and deck area by the river.

Itano-gun Kitajima-cho Nakamura Aza Eguchi 1-8


Open Hours
11:00-20:00 (weekdays)
10:00-20:00 (weekends and public holidays)
* The store may close early if stocks of gelato run out

A quiet, riverside gelato store and cafe using fresh milk and hand-picked fruit.

Natura, found by the banks of the Kyu Yoshino River in Kitajima-cho, is a gelato store also serving coffee and sweets and with a focus on using natural ingredients. The milk for the gelato is brought in daily from highlands in Okayama, and all fruit and other ingredients are hand-picked. Even the coffee beans used in coffee served at the store are brought in from Toyotomi Coffee in the City.

  • Gelato single – 315 yen (one flavour) / double 367 yen (two flavours) – cookies and cream, cocoa and cream, fresh chocolate, royal milk tea, rich caramel, maccha, etc.
  • Gelato takeaway – 1,260 yen (500 cc, two flavours) / 2,205 yen (1,000 cc, two flavours)
  • Handmade peach juice 540 yen
  • Red Shiso Juice 357 yen
  • Caramel / Vanila Cafe Late 504 yen

The menu also includes a variety of other coffee, cakes and desserts.

The view out over the Kyu Yoshino River from the outdoors seating for Natura.

The view out over the Kyu Yoshino River from the outdoors seating for Natura.

Store Interior
While the menu leaves little to be desired, one of Natura’s main attractions is its riverside location. The store sits right next to the Kyu Yoshino River, and while the parking area sits right next to a main roadway the store itself is quiet and peaceful. Inside, customers have a wide view through large windows out onto the river, and there is even a small landing area and outside deck for those who want to enjoy the outdoors during the warmer months of the year.


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The entrance to the store.

The entrance to the store.

Tokushima-shi Sumiyoshi 1-6-11


Open Hours
* Lunch 11:30~15:00 (LO 14:00)
* Dinner 17:30~22:30 (LO 21:15)
* Closed on Mondays or the next day when Monday is a public holiday.
* A total of 25 parking spaces are available.

A store offering authentic pizza so popular the seats are almost always full. Sugatti is popular for its menu of pizzas served fresh from a wood-fire kiln brought in especially from Italy. The pizza crusts are made using flour from Naples and have a strong texture to them.

A plate of salad for two from the Napoli Lunch set. Lots of fresh vegetables and some chicken with a variety of dressings.

A plate of salad for two from the Napoli Lunch set.

Pizza isn’t the only thing on the menu, however, as the store has a large a la carte menu using pasta, fresh vegetables, meat and seafood from Tokushima*. Very good lunch and dinner sets are also available, and you can even make take out orders for pizza.

* The a la carte menu is written in fine characters in Japanese on a blackboard and is a little hard to read.

  • Lunch sets from 997 yen
  • Pizza and pasta sets from 1554 yen
  • Iberico Ham Sauté 1580 yen

A quatro fromage pizza, fresh from the oven. It costs an extra 350 yen when ordered from the set menu, but you won't regret it.

A quatro fromage pizza, fresh from the oven. It costs an extra 350 yen when ordered from the set menu, but you won't regret it.

Store Interior
The name of the chef who owns the store is Mr. Suga. His nickname, Sugattii is the root of the store’s name, and part of its popularity is in his friendly nature. The store is often filled up around lunch and dinner time, so making a reservation in advance is the way to go.

For a look at some of the food and a review (in Japanese) check out the store’s profile on Awawa’s Tokushima Map website.


The Spring Traffic Safety Campaign

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Since the start of the week, the drivers amongst us may have noticed a larger police presence out on the roads than usual. While some of them are looking out for those who have had a little too much fun “watching the flowers” so to speak, there is actually another reason behind this sudden appearance.

That’s right – it’s time for the National Spring Traffic Safety Campaign.

This year the campaign is being held from Monday, April 6 to Wednesday, April 15, and the police will be out in force to make sure that drivers are in compliance with the road laws. In particular, the goal of this year’s campaign is to raise awareness about traffic safety around children and the elderly to help bring down the high death toll for related incidents.

The police have also announced the following goals:

  • Checking for proper use of seatbelts in both the front and rear seats of vehicles.
  • Promotion of safe riding of bicycles.
  • Prevention of drink driving.
  • Prevention of night time accidents.

So take care while you’re out on the roads, and we wish you all safe driving!

For those interested, you can find the original announcement in Japanese on the Tokushima Prefecture Homepage.

Japanese Lessons @ TOPIA

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Interested in studying Japanese?

Well, the first semester of Japanese classes for the year have started up at TOPIA. Students are welcome to register at any time from now until the end of the semester. Check the chart below for more details on specific classes.

Time: All classes are held from 10:30am to 12:00pm on their scheduled day of the week.

Where: The meeting rooms at TOPIA, on the sixth floor of the Clement Plaza, JR Tokushima Station.

Cost: There is a  materials fee of 1,500 yen for a semester of 20 classes. However, if there are only 10 or less classes in the semester then the cost is only 750 yen. However, all classes require the Minna no Nihongo  textbooks (2,500 yen), available for purchase at TOPIA at any time.

Tuesday – Elementary 1
Ms. Tamura
We will study various verb forms, and sentence patterns using those forms. Text: “Minna no Nihongo 1” from Chapter 14

Wednesday – Elementary 2
Ms. Motoki
We will study various verb forms, and expand our range of expression.
Text: “Minna no Nihongo 2” from Chapter 26

Thursday – Elementary 3
Ms. Yamada
We will study conditionals, causative, passive voice, and honorific expressions. Text: “Minna no Nihongo 2” from Chapter 38

Friday – Beginner
Ms. Aoki
We will take the first steps towards learning basic expressions, and study hiragana and katakana, too. Text: “Minna no Nihongo 1” from Chapter 1

Saturday – General
Group Lesson
A salon-style workshop where students can study freely according to their current level, needs or requirement.
If you want to use “Minna no Nihongo”, please buy it.

Sunday – Elementary 2
We will study various verb forms, and expand our range of expression.
Text: “Minna no Nihongo 2” from Chapter 26

Sunday – Beginner – Elementary 1
Group Study
A class for those who are only able to participate on weekends. Chapters will be split into three groups according to level.
Text: “Minna no Nihongo 1” from Chapter 1 to 25

Also, a free Japanese class is held every Wednesday by Ms. Murasawa to teach basic vocabulary and kana in preparation for the elementary classes. You can turn up anytime without enrolling in the class.