Rice planting in Kochi begins around this time of year, so local farmers are hard at work among the beautiful fields now characterized by pools of calm water, which reflect the spring sky
I always make a trip to Yoshinobu rice terraces in Motoyama Town not only because it’s a refreshing escape from the city, but also, a reminder to appreciate the bowls of rice I get to enjoy thanks to these countryside farmers
The first picture (top left) shows a farmer gracefully maneuvering a rice transplanter. Although machines save considerable time and labor, in no way does this mean they make everything easy. Farmers still have to ensure the field is leveled appropriately before planting, the machines are regularly inspected, oiled and cleaned for optimal use, and rice transplanters are driven perfectly straight to maintain equal space between each seed. As a result of these efforts and the area's ideal conditions (availability of magnesium-rich water, high mineral content of the soil, etc.), the brand of rice from the area (called Tenku no Sato) has ranked the best in Japan twice!
Just take a look at how @suzu_iku has transformed Tenku no Sato into the most adorable rice balls! If you’re looking to up your lunch box game or simply want to witness wholesome foodie content, definitely follow @suzu_iku (Instagram link below)!
We also mustn't forget that delicious rice makes delicious drinks! Nobuo Taoka (top right photo) makes incredible shochu (distilled liquor) using Tenku no Sato rice at a small brewery in Motoyama Town (located just 13 minutes from Yoshinobu rice terraces by car)! Tastings are available here, but it is recommended to call in advance