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Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 1 - Japanese Cuisine (Oishinbo #1)

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3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  952 Ratings  ·  135 Reviews
Follow journalist Yamaoka Shiro on a rich culinary adventure as he hunts for the "ultimate menu". To commemorate its 100th anniversary the heads of newspaper Tozai Shimbun come up with a plan to publish the “Ultimate Menu”. The assignment is given to journalist Yamaoka Shiro, the protagonist of the series. With the help of a female coworker, Kurita Yuko, Yamaoka starts off ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published January 20th 2009 by VIZ Media LLC (first published January 1st 2006)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Miriam
Oct 20, 2016 Miriam rated it it was amazing
Shelves: culinary, graphic
Really impressed that a piece of writing that is primarily intended to instruct people about traditional Japanese cuisine managed to be so full of plot interest and even emotional weight. I don't know if he'll be able to keep it up, but I'll definitely be reading more. I may even eventually try some of the cooking technique tips.

Sesana
Nov 03, 2014 Sesana rated it liked it
Shelves: food, comics
This might sum up the difference between (mainstream) Western comics and Japanese manga: Oishinbo is a series about food, one that lasted more than twenty years and 100 volumes, regularly selling over one million copies per volume. To put that into perspective, Saga, the best-selling single trade paperback last year, sold less than a quarter that amount, in a country with more than twice the population. It's kind of amazing, when you think about it.

Due to the extremely long running nature of the
...more
MissAnnThrope
28 February 2013

Dear Poor Library Patron who reads this after me,

I profusely apologize for the drool-stained condition in which you shall receive this book. The gorgeously illustrated food had my salivary glands working overtime. It could not be helped. My advice to you is to wear a bib and hold the book a good two-feet's distance away from mouth. Keep yummy snack handy to distract your chops from chewing on delectable book. Enjoy.

This here is foodie nirvana. Oishinbo, Volume 1 - Japanese Cuisin
...more
Ithil
May 06, 2016 Ithil rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Me regalaron este manga pensando en lo mucho que me gusta la cocina y lo mucho que me llama la atención el mundo oriental y en ese sentido no se equivocaron. Lamentablemente creo que en ese sentido se le podría haber sacado mucho más partido al manga. De ahí que se lleve el "it was ok", que no es que no me haya gustado, pero tampoco creo que de para más.

Si no me equivoco, la idea del mismo no es otra sino intentar explicar y enseñar la cocina tradicional japonesa a un mundo donde no es muy cono
...more
Cristina
Jun 25, 2016 Cristina rated it liked it
Recommends it for: atrapados por los sabores japoneses
Shelves: japonesa, cómic
A pesar de trama y personajes simplones, me ha gustado por los siguientes motivos:

- destaca la frescura y la calidad del producto como elementos ineludibles para conseguir seducir al comensal.

- se ocupa de la técnica del dominio del corte, que requiere de un cuchillo adecuado, para poder ofrecer sashimi perfecto.

- se detiene en la importancia de la vajilla, materiales y colores, que participa del ritual de preparar los alimentos en Japón.

- no olvida la dedicación, la disciplina y la autoexigenci
...more
Nidhi Srivastava
10 episodes in the life of a bunch of journalists. Very information rich. But the actual story doesn't pick up in pace pr intrigue till like, the last quarter.
Laura
Apr 04, 2010 Laura rated it really liked it
Foodies, Japanese-style. Oishinbo follows the adventures of culinary journalist and slacker Shiro Yamaoka and his partner Yuko Kurita in their apparently never-ending quest to create the "Ultimate Menu," a meal embodying the pinnacle of Japanese cuisine. Shiro often butts heads with his estranged father Yuzan Kaibara, a famous artist (whose sculptures Shiro once smashed to bits -- thus the estrangement) and founder of the ultra-exclusive Gourmet Club.

The American version of this popular manga s
...more
Danielle
Feb 02, 2010 Danielle rated it liked it
Recommended to Danielle by: Lydia
Shelves: manga
This manga is an awesome way to learn about Japanese cooking, their values and sensibilities; especially if you're a cooking plebeian but want to be culturally aware and sensitive. This is despite the facts that the art isn't as appealing as many I've read, the story around the father/son's relationship isn't that interesting and you have to deal with a certain amount of superiority around Japanese cooking as compared to other culture's cooking. I find the latter the easiest to overlook, because ...more
Matthew
May 27, 2010 Matthew rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Foodie Manga Nerds
Recommended to Matthew by: The B.A. Foodist
Shelves: japan, food-and-booze
I was never really drawn to manga but my wife kind of likes it so when I found out about a food manga series in Bon Appetite Magazine I decided to get it from the library. I read four books in the series before I got tired of it and this will serve as a review of all four. I find that it is hard to write food fiction without coming across as both pretentious and contrived. This series was no exception. The story lines were just totally unpalatable. The only exceptions to this generalization that ...more
Gareth Bogdanoff
Mar 29, 2009 Gareth Bogdanoff rated it liked it
Shelves: manga
I had a hard time deciding if this was a pretentious book, or if it was just about pretentious people. Despite the ridiculous premises that sorting grains of rice make the rice taste better, that you have bad manners if you get more than a centimeter of your chopsticks wet, etc, this was actually an entertaining book. And I did learn something about Japanese cuisine. I'm not sure if anything that I learned was useful or not.
Laura
Jun 13, 2014 Laura rated it liked it
Recommends it for: everyone!
I think that manga isn't really my thing because drawing doesn't mean much to me. As it stands, I enjoyed this book just fine, and found several parcels of information very useful during my travels in Japan. However, the art really does play a large part in the story and that's just not interesting to me. If you are into drawing/manga, this will probably register at least one extra star for you.
Tasia
Dec 20, 2016 Tasia rated it liked it
I started off my review of the third volume with this insight, which I think is even more important for the first volume: what Western readers should realize is that Oishinbo was an incredibly popular comic in Japan, only recently going on an indefinite hiatus. We're talking a run from 1983 to 2014, with each volume selling about 1.2 million copies. According to ye olde Wikipedia, that's more than 130 million copies! Can you imagine a Western comic centered around food selling that well?

With tha
...more
Adam
Nov 15, 2016 Adam rated it it was amazing
Japanese teaching comics are a wonder - a fun and educational way to dive into Japanese food culture and tradition.
Jason Crane
Oct 28, 2016 Jason Crane rated it it was amazing
I want to go back to Japan now, please.
Charles
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Erin L
Dec 30, 2016 Erin L rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novel
My first manga, ever. It was such a fantastic read. I'm so glad I received it as a Christmas gift.

It's about a father and son and pride. The story is told through a story about Japanese food and it's role in Japanese culture. I love food (including Japanese food) and I wanted to learn more about it. I wasn't expecting to learn so much about the country's culture at the same time.

I loved this so much I'll probably try to dig up more in the series. I totally recommend this to anyone interested in
...more
Juniper
Dec 25, 2016 Juniper rated it liked it
This was the first manga I have read, and it was an interesting foray into both Japanese food culture and manga. The main point of the book is to introduce you to various aspects of Japanese cuisine, including basic knife skills, and how to make "dashi". The narrative device that is used to pull all this together is the quest for the "Ultimate Menu", spiced up by the father-son conflict between a young journalist Yamaoko and his demanding, perfectionist gourmet father Kaibara. This plot device w ...more
Keith Alverson
Dec 26, 2016 Keith Alverson rated it liked it
Shelves: japan
A very good premise: a manga overview of japanese cuisine. However it was a bit repetitive in tone, too frequently going back to the 'spirit' of the food as its defining character. Also I was a bit disappointed it did not cover any interesting local dishes from different prefectures, or any food from certain times of the year or festivals. The characters showed much more emotion and anger than I think is common in Japan - perhaps that is part of the manga allure: showing emotions in a way that i ...more
Lydia Presley
Dec 03, 2009 Lydia Presley rated it it was amazing
Shelves: foodie, manga, 2010
It's not very common in other countries to eat fish raw. And since it's raw, people might think it doesn't take a lot of skill. But for fish or meat to be eaten raw, a great deal of technique is required. We should be proud that Japanese cuisine has developed such delicious ways to prepare sashimi.

This is a very "meaty" manga. All puns aside, it has a definite message and carries a fascinating look at the Japanese culture and cuisine - which are very closely intertwined.

We follow the story of
...more
NewG
Sep 25, 2016 NewG rated it liked it
Shelves: donated
Good spiritual inspie on cooking sans pretense and eschewing vanity was a good metaphor, strawberries in condensed milk... Also 3 recipes to try out
Eustacia Tan
Oct 17, 2016 Eustacia Tan rated it it was amazing
Found this in the NLB and immediately got it because I haven't read Oishinbo in English before! The only time I read it, it was in Japanese, and at a manga cafe when I was staying the night, so I didn't make it very far.

Anyway, Oishinbo is a really famous manga in Japan, and it's all about food! Sadly, it's now on hiatus (probably permanent) because the author made a misstep when talking about food from Fukushima.

The plot of Oishinbo is roughly like this: Tozai News wants to create an "ultimate
...more
Vicki
May 26, 2009 Vicki rated it really liked it
Shelves: manga-and-comics
This was a close call between a 3 star and a 4 star book but I think 3 is where it belongs for me.

What's great about this volume is that it covers a subject matter which you don't find very often in translated manga - its a book aimed at adults centering around food appreciation (Oshinbo basically means 'gourmet', I think).

However, rather than a recipe book or cooking guide, this series doesn't attempt to teach you much about how to cook Japanese food, it's actually more of a drama where food, c
...more
Rickeclectic
Jun 15, 2009 Rickeclectic rated it liked it
Shelves: oddsnends
Oishinbo is the first in a series of Manga (those interesting Japanese "comic" books) about a man who is interested in Japanese food. Very interested. It is a Japanese Manga but it has been translated completely into English (though it reads the traditional back to front pagewise). It has all the qualities that make this "educational" type of Manga great. It wraps the educational information about japanese food (of which there is some on every page) inside of a typical story about a man who is a ...more
Joshua
Aug 18, 2015 Joshua rated it it was amazing
Shelves: graphic-novels
Food, glorious food...

The whole family loved this book, from ten and twelve year old boys through to my crusty old self. It is actually a collection of the best episodes from a long running Japanese manga serial so there are some continuity issues between the chapters. This is not a great issue however as the food takes precedence over the main plot involving the conflict and competition between the hero (Yamaoka) and his father, the domineering uber-gourmet Kaibara to create the ultimate menu.
...more
Kelly Tillman
Oct 23, 2014 Kelly Tillman rated it it was amazing
I love food (hey, who doesn't?), so I figure Oishinbo: Japanese Cuisine would be great introducing to Japanese Food for the average gaijin whose idea of Japanese Cuisine is sushi rolls, teriyaki bowls (not Japanese by the way) miso soup, rice and green tea. But it's more than that. Japanese Cuisine is as diverse as American or French Cuisine and it's preparation can take a chef years to master. The premise of the story: the publishers of a newspaper have assigned the protagonist Yamaoka Shiro an ...more
Angel
Jan 12, 2011 Angel rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: manga fans, foodies
This is a series that I plan on following. The premise is pretty interesting and simple. This newspaper has embarked on a quest to create the "Ultimate Menu." To do so, they put the protagonist in charge who, though not exactly the most enterprising guy, actually does have some serious culinary chops of his own. Problem is a rival newspaper wants to do a "Supreme Menu" of their own as well, and they are being advised by none other than our protagonist's father. Father and son are rivals, so this ...more
Sara
Jul 17, 2015 Sara rated it did not like it
That was painful.

I love manga, I love books about food and cooking, I love books about Japan. What could go wrong?

Well, a cast of characters that I don't like, for one thing. Kaibara Sensei is such a jerk and his son is not much better and the rivalry between them gets old really quick. There are some interesting tidbits about Japanese cooking - how to prepare a great sea bream, for instance. Unfortunately, the part I would be interested in turned out to be extremely boring.

The art work was so-s
...more
mm
Nov 21, 2009 mm rated it really liked it
It may be a manga but it very cleverly explains Japanese food. I really enjoyed it and though I do know quite a bit about Japanese cuisine, I learnt more reading this book.
page 114: 'Wa is the best word to describe Japan; we harmonize and synthesize anything we can, but strangely the flavors of the ingredients still remain distinct, and eventually we get something that's unique to the Japanese taste. Come to think of it, "harmony" is a very provisional concept. But it's exactly what I like about
...more
Jennifer Victor
Feb 05, 2016 Jennifer Victor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fun Comic About Japanese Cuisine

This comic actually turned out pretty fun to read. You learn quite a lot about Japanese cuisine and culture while also following the main characters solve dilemmas (food related, of course) and their task of making the "Ultimate Menu" articles for their newspaper.

The only detractor I have for this comic is about how it's published. It's not presented in chronological order, so your not reading from the first chapter; instead your reading chapters picked to fit th
...more
Angie
Jan 20, 2013 Angie rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
Excellent! Learn about Japanese cuisine and the culture of food, including how passionately the Japanese (or at least the author) feel about it. This is different from Drops of God in that it is about how the Japanese characters feel about the food, its preparation, the attention to detail in presentation and thoughtfulness behind every decision, including what plate to serve the food on. There is even a chapter on the different types of chopsticks!

The original series is over 100 volumes and so
...more
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雁屋哲
Manga writer and essayist extraordinaire Tetsu Kariya graduated from prestigious Tokyo University. Kariya was employed with a major advertising agency before making his debut as a manga writer in 1974, when he teamed up with legendary manga artist Ryoichi Ikegami to create Otoko Gumi (Male Gang). The worlds of food and manga were forever changed in 1983 when Kariya, together with artist Akira H
...more
More about Tetsu Kariya...

Other Books in the Series

Oishinbo (7 books)
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 2 - Sake
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 3 - Ramen and Gyoza
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 4 - Fish, Sushi and Sashimi
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 5 - Vegetables
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 6 - The Joy of Rice
  • Oishinbo a la carte, Volume 7 - Izakaya: Pub Food

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