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July 2nd, 2020 by Joe Heitzeberg • Read 17,619 times • 1 min read
Kobe Beef is iconic. You could visit the Medina of Fez, a pool hall in Kiev or a village in the highlands of Papua New Guinea and ask almost anyone — and they would tell you they’ve heard of Kobe Beef. There are few things in the culinary world as highly regarded or as rare. It’s scarcity has contributed to its overall aura. Only a relatively small group of farmers and processors in Hyogo Prefecture are qualified to raise it, and each calf...
November 18th, 2019 by Joe Heitzeberg • Read 8,954 times • less than one min read
"Shokunin" is a Japanese word without a direct English translation. The closest is “craftsman” or “master of one’s profession”, but these simplistic translations miss a deeper devotion and dedication — over many years — to reach a certain perfect command over one’s area of obsession. To hear stories of how bullet trains in Japan operate with an average departure delay that’s less than 18 seconds or that Japan’s pizzas might now be better than...