December 2014 visit to Japan for Dolpa 32, part 1: before the dolpa

In December 2014 we took another trip to Japan, this time almost exclusively for attending Tokyo Dolpa 32, but there were also a few days before Dolpa where we just did other things.

I'll concentrate on those for this post.

Atlanta airport
A Delta plane as we wait in Atlanta.

Cocoshnik - a chain of jewelry stores in Japan. The fun thing here is that in Russian kokoshnik means a special traditional Russian girl headgear.

On one of our first days we went to Kappabashi, a street in Tokyo that houses a large number of stores trying to sell restaurant and kitchen equipment.

Kappabashi street
That building with a head of some cook on it is the start of the shopping section.

Kappabashi street
Dishes and other ceramics

Fake food at Kappabashi street
Fake food for display. This is an important part of Japanese restaurant - to have a display full of plastic, but good looking food depicting what you'll get inside.

Fake food at Kappabashi street

Signs store at Kappabashi
A signs store.

Fake food at Kappabashi street
Another fake food store, this one also selling miniature plastic food good for use as a cellphone strap or a key ring.

Fake food at Kappabashi street

Kappabashi store
Another ceramics store.

Kappabashi beetle
I am not sure why the beetle on this building and how does that relate to the kitchen street, but it must suck for the inhabitants of that second story apartment.

Kappa tatue at Kappabashi
This is the kappa (some sort of a water demon) after which the street is named.

Kappa tatue at Kappabashi

Pizza oven at Kappabashi
There's also more serious equipment available of course.

In fact there were many-many more shops than could be included into a single blog post.

So we'll move on to our dinner that was in the Alice in Wonderland restaurant.

Cocktail in Alice restaurant
Glowing cocktails.

Dinner in Alice Restaurant

Shrimp and potato tart gratin
"Eat me" Shrimp and potato tart gratin

Colorful vegetable salad
Colorful vegetable salad.

Mad as March Hare pasta
March Hare pasta.

Crab and shrimp with tomato cream sauce pasta
And another version of it with a bit different ingredients.

Cheshire cat Chicken cream stew
Cheshire cat chicken cream stew.

Beef sirloin steak Curious Oyster
Curious oyster beef sirloin steak.

Strawberry mousse and vanilla icecream parfait
Strawberry mousse and vanilla parfait.

Royal milk tea pannacotta
Royal tea pannacotta

Next day I went for a walk in Tokyo with friends.

Sky tree
Tokyo Sky Tree. It was built relatively recently and is now the highest tower in Tokyo.

Sky tree

Sky tree

Demon on Tokyo streets
A demon on Tokyo streets, who might have thought.

Demon on Tokyo streets

And at the same time Ksusha went to some sort of a cooking class with her friends, I guess just for fun ;)

Cooking class

Dolls at cookign class
Of course all of them were obsessed with dolls too.

Cooking class
An extremely sweet dessert.

Cooking class

Cooking class

Cooking class - gingerbread cookies
The gingerbread cookies they were making ;)

And then in the afternoon we went to Nippori for a fabrics market

Fabris store in Nippori
This is just one shop full of fabrics on something like 5 or 6 floors. And there was entire street filled with fabrics shops.

Fabris store in Nippori

From Nippori we went to Tenshi-no-Mado in Harajuku where we have met an old acquaintance - Mr. Miyamoto, who does very elaborate knitted clothes for his dolls.

Kasumi in Tenshi no Mado

This doll here is his Kasumi, the new Volks porcelain doll that is highly sought after since it's typically only released two-three a month.

Kasumi in Tenshi no Mado

This concludes the pre Tokyo Dolpa 32 days.