On a sunny and warm day, went to Ochigabi Winery in Yoichi. This was the third visit. The last time was at the end of last year, in the middle of a white blizzard.
Located at the base of the Shakotan Peninsula, Yoichi Town is surrounded by the Japan Sea and lush green hills. Although it gets a lot of snow, it is blessed with a relatively mild climate in Hokkaido due to the influence of the Tsushima Current. The snow has melted at Ochigabi, Yoichi's representative winery, and can feel the coming spring. Vineyards and snow, blue sky and white clouds were beautiful.
Ochigabi is a place where foods and wines are both delicious. Yoichi is the largest producer of grapes in Hokkaido, and is the leading edge of the Hokkaido's wine industry, thanks to its mild weather and low rainfall from summer to early autumn.
Lunch menu. Reasonable price starting at 1,600 yen, including bread, salad, and coffee.
The wine tasting was 500 yen per flight with three wines. This time, had white Muskateller, Pinot Gris, and red Acoron. Typical wine grape varieties grown in Yoichi with a large temperature difference between day and night are Kerner, Zweigelt Löbe, and Müller-Thurgau. The average temperature and sunshine hours in Yoichi are said similar to those in Germany.
The view from the large windows was a vineyard. The town of Yoichi is known with its fruit trees, and about 80% of the farmers grow grapes and apples. Half a century ago, apple cultivation reached its peak, and then grapes and pears emerged due to changes in consumer needs.
Wheat-fed pork loin cutlet, Milanese style. Crispy, flavorful, sweet pork, fruity tomato sauce. Lighter than pork cutlet, goes well with both white and red (wine).
Yoichi wheat-fed pork boiled in red wine with prunes. It crumbled and melted. Never had pork stewed in red wine before, but the sweet pork goes perfectly with the richly acidic red wine sauce. By the way, wheat-fed pork is fed with mostly wheat to reduce its odor.
Apple tart. Glad to be able to enjoy Yoichi's specialty grapes and apples.
Also tasted a Pinot Noir in the tasting room. The first impression was fresh, with a hint of Yoichi's crisp climate and sea breeze. But when put it in the mouth, it becomes silky. Foods and wines are both wonderful in Yoichi. Thank you for the good meal.
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