Your Journey on
Train Suite
Shiki-shima

3 Day/2 Night Trip Winter

Hot springs, great cuisine and snowy landscapes -see the best of Japan's snow country.

Trip Itinerary

The two night trip that is offered during the winter. This is a package where one can "rediscover the scenic beauty of snow country while also enjoying some winter fun."

Stopover 1:
Shiroishi (Miyagi Prefecture), Day 1

  • Ueno Station [Departure 10:20 AM]
  • Shiroishi Station [Arrival 3:21 PM]
  • Traditional Japanese Performing Arts Hall, Hekisuien/Samurai Residence, Shiroishi Cuisine/Dinner at Junsen (Sendai)/Matsushima Bay Night Cruise
  • Matsushima Station [Departure 9:58PM]


Traditional Japanese Performing Arts Hall, Hekisuien/Samurai Residence, Shiroishi Cuisine/Dinner at Junsen (Sendai)/Matsushima Bay Night Cruise

The city of Shiroishi is a prosperous castle town that is the home of a variety of well-preserved techniques and unique experiences. We will share the city’s turbulent history as well as the many specialties produced in its fertile soils.
After the tour, you'll enjoy cuisine made with carefully selected seasonal ingredients at the restaurant Junsen in downtown Sendai.
You'll then be taken to Shiogama where you can enjoy a night cruise of Matsushima Bay.

Stopover 2:
Aomori (Aomori Prefecture), Day 2 (Goshogawara Trip)

  • Aomori Station [Arrival 8:32 AM]
  • Tachineputa no Yakata, Board the Potbelly Stove Train, Lunch at Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden
  • Hirosaki Station [Departure 3:45 PM]
Tachineputa no Yakata, Board the Potbelly Stove Train, Lunch at Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden

The 23 meter-tall (75 feet) Tachineputa festival floats are unique to Goshogawara. Experience their extraordinary charm first hand.
Then you'll board Tsugaru Railway's potbelly stove train and enjoy an amazing journey through the winter scenery.
Lunch will be served at Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden, in a Western-style hall designed by a descendent of prominent 19th-century carpenter Sakichi Horie.

Stopover 2:
Hirosaki (Aomori Prefecture), Day 2 (Tsugaru Trip)

  • Aomori Station [Arrival 8:32 AM]
  • BUNACO Factory, Hirosaki Park, Lunch at Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden
  • Hirosaki Station [Departure 3:45PM]
BUNACO Factory, Hirosaki Park, Lunch at Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden

Watch BUNACO's craftsmen at work making woodcrafts from Aomori beech (buna) wood, and then have a go yourself!
Then take a walk through Hirosaki Park and admire the cherry trees that are awaiting cherry blossom season in spring. You'll also hear a talk from the cherry blossom protectors (sakura-mori) who maintain and preserve the cherry trees for future generations.

Stopover 3:
Ichinoseki (Iwate Prefecture), Day 2

  • Ichinoseki Station [Arrival 9:24PM]
  • Sekinoichi Sake Brewery
  • Ichinoseki Station [Departure 11:11PM]
Sekinoichi Sake Brewery

Take a night tour of Sekinoichi Sake Brewery and enjoy a sake tasting.
Experience a unique warehouse tour that will show you the sake-making process while introducing you to scholars who have made the process what it is.

Stopover 4:
Naruko-Onsen (Miyagi Prefecture), Day 3

  • Naruko-Onsen Station [Arrival 6:18AM]
  • Naruko Hot Springs
  • Naruko-Onsen Station [Departure 9:37AM]
  • Ueno Station [Arrival 4:53PM]
Naruko Hot Springs

The Naruko Onsen Village is the epitome of a Tohoku hot springs area.
Take a dip in these incredible mineral waters, which have long been popular for their therapeutic qualities.

*All photos are for illustrative purposes.

Cuisine

In the tale of any journey,
one hungers for cuisine that lingers in memory.

The most anticipated pleasure of travelers on Train Suite Shiki-shima, must be the meals partaken on-board the train and at each destination.

Breakfast, lunch and dinner each feature fare that reveals the peculiar contours of the regions we travel through. At each destination you’ll savor dishes prepared by chefs reared on the flavors and ingredients of that region, as you appreciate its beauty through the train windows. It will definitely be cuisine that lingers in your memory.

  • * The information listed in “Cuisine” is current as of June 2016.
  • * All photos are for illustrative purposes. They may differ from the meals actually served on each Train Suite Shiki-shima journey.

Introduction of staff providing a fantastic flavors

Katsuhiro Nakamura

Overall Cuisine Supervisor

As a means to assemble a great team of cooking staff that provide the best possible level of cuisine for Train Suite Shiki-shima, I have spent more than one year together with my long-time friend, Hitoshi Iwasaki, traveling and eating in the eastern Japan region to discover elite chefs to collaborate and work with us. Ingredients that are characteristic of an area prepared with the intuition of a chef with actual roots in an area result in the most exquisite cuisine. Also, the entire cooking staff will collaborate to deliver just the right volumes and balance for all three meals of the day. My aim is to create a dining environment that has never been witnessed before, or in fact a “Three-star restaurant on wheels.”

Hitoshi Iwasaki

The first executive chef of Train Suite Shiki-shima and now cuisine supervisor

As Executive Chef on Train Suite Shiki-shima, I visited a number of collaborating restaurants around eastern Japan with the Overall Cuisine Supervisor, Katsuhiro Nakamura, to best determine how to stage a narrative for each region’s food. I also made sure to serve some meals on the train. Beginning in the spring of 2019, I will extend support as a Cuisine Supervisor in conjunction with Nakamura, with our real intention that all meals served during the trip will be great memories for the guests, whether on board Train Suite Shiki-shima or not. Please enjoy a new world of cuisine imagined and planned by Shigeru Sato who has taken on the important role of Executive Chef.

Shigeru Sato

Executive chef of Train Suite Shiki-shima

Succeeding cuisine and numerous considerations on Train Suite Shiki-shima, which have been built up by the supervisors, Nakamura and Iwasaki, I will create meals of imaginative narrativity, with great attention to the ingredients and a culture unique to each area. I am from Akita in northeastern Japan, which means that I have such a commitment, and always do my very best to highlight the most attractive points of each area through my cuisine. I am very much looking forward to welcoming the guests to Train Suite Shiki-shima.

Sendai's traditional cuisine that brings out the delicious tastes of high-quality ingredients
  • Outside of the train
  • Dinner

Yasunori Abe

Japanese Restaurant Junsen
Sendai, Miyagi

Sendai has an abundance of both seafood and mountain vegetables, and has inherited the legendary spirit of hospitality that was embodied by 17th-century lord Date Masamune. Situated at the confluence of cold and warm currents, Sendai Bay offers a wide range of seafood including halibut and tuna. There are also bountiful harvests of vegetables such as chamame beans in summer, taro in autumns and snow greens in winter. The restaurant that Train Suite Shiki-shima passengers will eat at is owned by Katsuyama Brewery, which was the brewery for the Date family. The rice is boiled in the water used to brew the sake, with the cooking process constantly customized to draw out the delicious natural flavors of the ingredients. Enjoy seafood fresh from the sea, seasonal vegetables and Japanese sake with an elegant aroma.

Breakfast featuring seasonal foods and local ceramics from Iwate Prefecture
  • Onboard the train
  • Breakfast

Hirotatsu Shinohara

Ryotei Komaryu
Morioka, Iwate

You'll be served a traditional breakfast from a restaurant with a history of over 60 years, dating back to its opening by Komaryu, one of the first Morioka geigi performers. Both the ingredients and the ceramic dishes are from Iwate Prefecture so that Train Suite Shiki-shima passengers can enjoy the unique hospitality of Morioka, Iwate. The ozen dishes, rice bowl and soup bowl are made with Johoji lacquer, and the ceramic dishes are made from Kokuji-yaki ceramics. Your breakfast will also include seasonal seafood from the Sanriku coast and Kiniro no Kaze (Golden Breeze) rice, an Iwate luxury rice that made a very recent debut in 2017. Your meal will pack a variety of features of Iwate dining culture into a short time.

Italian cuisine with a focus on home-made ingredients
  • Outside of the train
  • Lunch

Michiaki Sasamori

Osteria Enoteca Da Sasino
Hirosaki, Aomori

When I was studying in Italy, I came to appreciate the rich variety of regional cuisine as I sampled restaurants in each region, visited wineries, and shared meals in the homes of friends. In trying to recreate these regional flavors, I raise vegetables in my garden and make wine, ham, sausage, cheese, etc. myself. My winemaking begins with growing the grapes - I grow two species of white wine grapes and three species of red wine grapes, along with Hirosaki apples for cider. You'll be able to enjoy Hirosaki cider and wine along with a full course meal made from Aomori winter ingredients while taking in the snowy scenery at the elegant Fujita Memorial Japanese Garden.

Delectable seasonal fish by Shiogama Port
  • Onboard the train
  • Lunch

Sushi Shirahata Kunitomo Shirahata (left)
Kameki Sushi Masahiro Hoshi (center)
Sushitetsu Taizo Shirahata (right)

Shiogama Sushi Kaido
Shiogama, Miyagi

Shiogama in Miyagi Prefecture is a port town where fresh seafood such as inshore tuna is caught through Shiogama Port. It is also famous for its large number of sushi restaurants. The owners of three sushi restaurants work alternately on Train Suite Shiki-shima, serving expertly made sushi with a traditional style and flavorful ingredients.

Sushi Shirahata (pictured bottom left): Also renowned for its seasonal sides. Taste the four seasons of Shiogama.
Kamekizushi (pictured bottom center): A long-standing 90-year-old restaurant. With generations of experience, their skills are undeniable.
Sushi Tetsu (pictured right): With colorful sushi and sides artfully arranged on your plate, your meal will please your taste buds and your eyes alike.