They have a pretty unique feature at Beniya Mukayu which is a big elevator that takes you directly down to the village of Yamashiro, through the mountain.
It’s already starting in a pretty surreal way, right?
You can add to that the fact that it’s raining to the point where we can hardly see the contours of the empty village (remember, it’s that place with all the curious colors). Armed with our umbrellas and raincoats we’re still determined to find the soba place that has been recommended to us. When we finally reach its doorstep, it of course has a delightfully unassuming entrance with an understated wooden sliding door and a worn out hand-painted linen noren. Inside, it looks like the perfect respite from this terrible weather, with wood everywhere, handmade details and soft lighting. The menu is very straightforward with hot or cold soba noodles and a short list of toppings.
I had never had soba before, and it’s a bit terrible because these ones were so good that they kind of ruined all the ones I had since. How could you replicate such good food served in such a special time and place. The moment was unique and it was my Westerner’s naivety to believe different.
The name of the restaurant is Yamade, and it’s right here on the map.
Soba are buckwheat noodles, served either hot in a broth or cold with a dipping sauce.
A noren is the piece of fabric that is hanged above the door of restaurants in Japan.