An Old Style Trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.5 [Local specialties, gifts and souvenirs]
In the retro Showa town “Shima Onsen”, there are quaint cafés such as “Kashiwaya café (柏屋カフェ)” which has latte art featuring the Onsen symbol, “Ginsen Chaya (銀泉茶屋)” where one can enjoy local specialties such as “Okirikomi Udon (おきりこみうどん)” and “Yakimanju (焼きまんじゅう)”.For souvenirs and gifts, you can find various merchandise featuring “Gunma chan (ぐんまちゃん)”, which is one of the area’s “yurukara (ゆるキャラ)” : local mascots that represent various Japanese prefectures.
- Have an onsen cappuccino while enjoying the retro atmosphere of “Kashiwaya café (柏屋カフェ)”
- Shima’s local specialties:“Okirikomi Udon (おきりみうどん)”, “Yakimanju (焼きまんじゅう) “ and “Danbemeshi (だんべえめし)”
- For souvenirs and gifts: yurukara “Gunma chan” and cosmetics made from natural hot spring water
Hello, this is Fujiko.
This article is the 5th installment following An Old Style Trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.4 [Spending Pleasant time at Your Accommodations: Onsen, Tatami Mats & Buffet] with a Featured Hotel List.
In this article, I will introduce the area’s local specialties, gifts and souvenirs.
The café not only provides a variety of coffees and homemade desserts, but meals and alcohol drinks as well.
How about having a cappuccino during your break between visiting several hot spring facilities?
“Kashiwaya café (柏屋カフェ)” is a famous and popular café.
At lunch time, practically all the seats are taken after the shuttle bus arrives.
※The website states that the café is open everyday but when I visited it was closed on Thursday.
Start walking from the bus terminal down through the shop street, and after walking for a few minutes you can find the Japanese style café, “Ginsen Chaya (銀泉茶屋)”.
You will feel at home in the shops old and simple atmosphere.
Local specialties “Okirikomi Udon (おきりみうどん)” and “Yakimanju (焼きまんじゅう) “
“Mountain vegetable soba noodles (山菜そば)” and homemade “sweet fermented rice drink (あまさけ)” were also good.
Pork cutlets, called tonkatsu in Japan, made from local pork called “Joshu Mugi Buta” is the most popular item in the restaurant “Asunaro (あすなろ)”
But this time, following what the menu referred to as “the specialty of the restaurant”, I ordered “Danbemeshi (だんべえめし)”.
“Danbemeshi (だんべえめし)” is rice on seaweed, eggs, chicken, green onions, with chicken soup poured over top.
The soup is light with a plain taste, not salty.
The container is filled with rice, so I quickly became full just off of “Danbemeshi (だんべえめし)”, but for those who can eat more, it might be nice to supplement your meal with the pork cutlets from the a la cart menu.
Incidentally, the miso noodles were also great.
Store holidays: Wednesday, 2ndTuesday
Open on national holidays
The café is located in the corner of Shima Grand Hotel
All Hello Kitty lovers (and even those not so familiar with the brand) will jump for joy when standing in front of rows of confectionaries decorated with the cute Hello Kitty logo.
The guests can take pictures with Hello Kitty drawn on the panel.
Some children were happily taking pictures together with Hello Kitty.
0279-64-2211(Shima Grand Hotel 1st Floor)
Store holiday: Same as the Shima Grand Hotel
Find your favorite from various sweets and snacks.
Baking-soda-leavened steamed bread with bean paste or Japanese pickles, “Momigiya (もみぢや)”, is big and filling.
The store has other confectioneries, such as normal-sized steamed bread with bean paste, as well as “Gunma chan (ぐんまちゃん)” sweets and so on.
These potato chips are flavored using Gunma’s specialty “Shimonita” green onion!
I bought confectioneries above at the store in Shima Grand Hotel.
Store holiday: same as the Shima Grand Hotel
The local mascot “Gunma chan (ぐんまちゃん)” who was awarded the grand prize in the 2014 “yurukara (ゆるキャラ)” contest.
I bought these above at “Ginsen Chaya (銀泉茶屋)” where I had “Okirikomi Udon (おきりみうどん)”. You can get many other kinds of “Gunma Chan” goods at the other stores as well.
For gifts and souvenirs, I would like to recommend facial lotion and soaps made from natural hot spring water, as well as handmade bookmarks made of local timbers.
I bought these above at “Kashiwaya café (柏屋カフェ)” where I had an Onsen cappuccino.
The café has other Japanese-style goods as well.
I bought this at “Nakamuraya (中村屋)”, which has various local sakes, and also serves as an inn for tourists.
The most popular sake, “Shimagawa (四万川)”, was sold out on that day.
I also recommend trying a local beer.
Make sure of the store holidays and shop hours before you visit, because some stores have holidays without notice and sometimes close early.
Information about other shops in Shima >> the Shima Onsen Association official website.
Lastly, I hope all visitors have a fantastic experience in Shima Onsen.
Find your favorite restaurants and stores while strolling around Shima village and try for yourself!
An Old Style Trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.1 [Aboard the comfort bus “Shima Onsen GO”]
An Old Style Trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.2 [Enjoying the Restful Footbaths and Public Baths]
An Old Style Trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.3 [Taking a Stroll through Retro Town]
An Old Style trip to Shima Hot Spring vol.4 [Spending Pleasant time at Your Accommodations: Onsen, Tatami Mats & Buffet] with a Featured Hotel List