48 Hours in Kanazawa

We headed to Tokyo station to catch the bullet train to Kanazawa and made sure to get there early enough to browse the food stalls. Everything in Japan is done with such attention to detail and travel food is no exception, even the bento boxes are wrapped up in paper like beautiful Christmas presents.

When we arrived in Kanazawa we dropped our bags at the Hotel Trusty, a classic Japanese businessman hotel (clean, comfy and affordable) before heading out to explore. I spotted a cool refurbished building on our walk – the share hotel, Kumu – we popped in for tea and a sweet treat.

The staff at Kumu seemed cool so I asked for shopping recommendations in the area, we were directed to the Seseragi Sunday Market.

For dinner we tried our luck walking into Plat Home. It was an hour and a half wait but the dishes coming out of the kitchen looked very tasty so we decided to go for a little walk and return. We stumbled into Bar NaGaYa where an eight dollar cover included a plate of shaved prosciutto, a tofu curry and another thin slab of tofu all lovingly prepared by the adorable  septuagenarian proprietress. This little snack paired with a Heartland beer and sake staved off our hunger nicely.

Back at Plat Home the food was absolutely sublime; pillowy crab dumplings, sweet potato bacon tempura, avocado with tuna and seaweed paste with edible flowers and my favorite, new cocktail – an amaretto ginger! We chatted a bit with the chef who was so cool and hospitable and then we grabbed a cab home. It’s always so fun and worthwhile to travel intuitively and let myself be guided into random places – this accidental night with no reservations turned out to be one of the most memorable of our trip.

The next morning we woke up and headed immediately to Omicho Market for a sushi breakfast. Kanazawa is on the sea of Japan so the seafood is super fresh and amazing. We found a little sushi counter on the far side of the market and were quickly seated by the owner’s daughter. The whole meal was delicious but my favorite thing had to be the local Negrudo fish which was served grilled atop sushi rice and hit with a bit of pink salt – divine!

I had it in my head that I wanted to experience an Onsen and we were directed to one favored by locals on the condition that I not write about it. The fact that you can go chill out in natural hot springs in this town for four american dollars is pretty insane so I agreed to honor the secret. Before heading to the hot springs we checked out some vintage stores on Tamagachi road, Escape was my favorite. For lunch we went to The Godburger and shared a yummy avo cheeseburger which the chef advised not to be treated with ketchup and mustard.

After lunch we walked to the 21st Century Art Museum and strolled nearby Kenroku park. At dusk we began a snack crawl that began at Yamashita and ended at Bar Gauche in the historic geisha district where we sipped Amaretto Gingers and Japanese whiskey on tatami mats and imagined how lovely this city would feel wish snow falling gently outside.

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