Kyoto, Japan


Speaking of pickled ears... pickled food is a staple of Japanese food and I had my share of pickled everything (minus human extremities). The cuisine of Kyoto was as much as an adventure as the trip itself. Basically if it swims - it's served in Japan and in my week in Kyoto I managed to eat at least a quarter of the encyclopedia of ichthyology. Octopus stood out as one of my favorites, especially takoyaki, which are fried balls of octopus with dressing.

There is also a great variety of vegetarian food in Kyoto and I had an opportunity to eat in a classic Zen vegetarian meal at Izusen in the Daitokuji Temple which was a beautiful as it was delicious and filling (so much so that it was hard to get up off the tatami mat).