Thanks to the blessed natural landscape, an abundance of fresh and delicious foods from the land and the see are available in Hamamatsu.
Blessed with a beautiful and productive natural environment, Hamamatsu offers fresh and delicious local foods all year around. Visitors can enjoy seafood, vegetables, traditional cuisine created by skilled chefs, inexpensive dishes loved by the locals, and other food that is uniquely Hamamatsu.
Lake Hamana Eel (Unagi)
The eel is one of Hamamatsu’s most famous products. Eel farming started in Lake Hamana in 1891, and today, Lake Hamana has become a synonym for safe, high-quality eels in Japan. Some restaurants specializing in eel dishes are found near JR Hamamatsu Station. There are also many eel shops run by eel producers near Lake Hamana.
Seafood of Enshu Nada and Lake Hamana
Blowfish (torafugu) and conger eels (hamo) may not be as well known as unagi eels but these expensive and exotic catches used in traditional Japanese cuisine are also produced in Hamamatsu and greatly appreciated by food connoisseurs. In the hot spring resort of Kanzanji, the trafugu festival is held from the beginning of October through February and the hamo festival from June through September to celebrate the fishing season in Enshu Nada. Each year, the festivals attract many locals and visitors alike. Clams raised in the brackish water of Lake Hamana are particularly tasty. In spring and summer, some locations like Bentenjima are open to the public for clam digging, which has become a seasonal tradition. Prawns and aonori seaweed are also local specialty food produced in Lake Hamana.
People in Hamamatsu are some of the top consumers of gyoza dumplings. Hamamatsu gyoza is made with local ingredients and often served with boiled bean sprouts on the side. Today, Hamamatsu gyoza has drawn attention as a local inexpensive specialty food and many gyoza fans come here from around Japan. There are more than 300 stores and restaurants that sell gyoza in Hamamatsu.
Mikan Oranges (Mikkabi Mikan and Topia Mikan)
“Mikkabi Mikan” and “Topia Mikan” are two of the most famous Hamamatsu orange brands. Thanks to the area’s mild climate and the sunny hillside locations facing Lake Hamana, Hamamatsu has become one of the leading Mikan orange producers in Japan. Hamamatsu’s oranges are very juicy and have an exquisite balance of sweetness and tartness. Many mikan farms are scattered around Lake Hamana. In October through December, some of these farms are open to the public for orange picking.