If you have been in Japan a while and are trying to maintain a plant-based diet, you know that your options can be pretty limited if you want to eat out. I was a fairly strict vegetarian when I came to Japan, a few exceptions I made were for katsuo-dashi (fish broth) so I could enjoy soba (buckwheat noodle soup) and miso (soybean paste) soup. I guess these exceptions lead to a taste for fish as a few years later I became a pescetarian. I still love all things veggie though. I prefer organic, macrobiotic, healthy and fresh plant-based foods over anything else. Although there are not a lot of pure plant-based restaurants in Shimoda and the surrounding area, there are many places that have veggie options. I am more than happy to share with you all of my finds.
Although not a restaurant, there is now a vegan lunch box delivery service that is sure to please all lovers of fresh foods. Vegan or not, the freshness and flavors of naocacoan will suit most discerning palates. Naoka Harada of naocacoan is one of the founders of Bon Juice, a popular cold-pressed juice bar in Tokyo. She continues to offer cold-pressed juice cleanses as well as her very tasty, organic lunch boxes. Everything is also very reasonably priced but there is a minimum order of ¥4000 and you have to place your order at least 1 day before your requested delivery day. I am sure the menu changes with the seasons, but our delivery consisted of a fresh green salad with carrot pulp dressing, shiso seeds and beans marinade, beetroot pulp grain’s salad, sesame flavored burdock root, stir-fried green pepper and daikon leaves, and chestnut dessert. We also had a very yummy green smoothie made from a mix of spinach, celery, Japanese pear, and spirulina. My friend who doesn’t usually like “healthy smoothies” loved naocacoan‘s green smoothie. Naocacoan only delivers in the south eastern tip of the Izu Peninsula, so be sure to plan ahead for a very tasty delivery!
If you are staying at Retreat wabi-sabi, or Guesthouse tabi-tabi, Naoka won’t have any trouble finding you she’s been here more than a few times! We love naocacoan! She also provided all the juices at our Retreat wabi-sabi’s first Yoga and Juice Cleanse Retreat in October 2017. More on that later!