Here at TABIBITO-SHOKUDO, and in everything our staff tend to do here in whilst living in Japan, is aimed at bringing the unique to life. In both meanings of bring to life: through bringing unique foods, communities, people and experiences to the lives of local people in Japan and our travellers, and also creating a platform where these foods, communities, people and experiences can be brought into life on a whole new level where they can shine for the amazing, unique things that they are and be remembered for it.
Founded by Yoonsoo Kang, tabibito-shokudo in Japanese (旅人食堂) can be translated into “traveller’s kitchen”. We invite foreigners travelling through Japan to our locations, currently in Maniwa City in Okayama Prefecture, and make a traditional dish from their home country, serving it to the locals in an informal, bar-like atmosphere. Japan is a country that loves its food, but out in the countryside most have very little chance to try various foods from different countries, let alone talk to foreigners either. We aim to change all that, one weekend at a time, by bringing foreigners and locals together through the common medium of food. With our travellers, we aim to break down barriers – whether of shyness or language or uncertainty – and leave fond memories of each individual, unique traveller we have – whether several come from the same country, we are all individuals, and we hope to convey that through our project – and to convey some of Japan’s amazing local culture back to our travellers, too for a unique experience unlike anything they’ve had before.