Waiting For The Tide @ Kamiyuge Port
Although a quiet old town of around 600 people, Kamiyuge on Yugejima Island has a rich history. It was originally settled during the Edo Period (1603~1867) as a port, which was mainly used as a resting place for feudal lords waiting for the tide to sail to the capital to serve their part in the sankin kotai-system. It flourished as a town for seafarers throughout the Meiji Period (1868~1912) and produced many navigators and ship engineers.
Handmade Bagels & Home-brewed Coffee
Located amidst the back alleys of Yugejima, Kitchen 313 Kamiyuge is a 100-year-old storehouse that has been renovated and reborn as a small shop selling coffee, bread and other baked sweets.
The storeowner, Mr. Shuhei Miyahata, roasts the coffee himself, and his wife Maki bakes the bread, bagels, muffins and other sweets. Many regular customers from the local area and nearby islands come to enjoy the handmade delicacies at this quiet hideaway.
Walking Among Old Houses
“I want our guests to enjoy the townscape of Kamiyuge before arriving at the shop,” Mr. Miyahata tells me. Honoring his words, I took a stroll down one of the area’s many alleyways. The old houses, which were built during the Meiji Period, have walls covered in plain though historically precious tiles called ‘hiragawara’. Each side of the square tiles measures about 30 centimeters!
If you get lost here, it only means you have more time to enjoy walking through history. Follow the small markers around the paths, and you will soon arrive at the sign for Kitchen 313 Kamiyuge.
The No.1 Most Popular Bagel
Mrs. Miyahata welcomes me warmly. Her most popular bagel is often ripped from the shelves by customers at opening time! As she is baking, Mrs. Miyahata smiles and tells me she tries not to work too hard.
Uncovering Lost Treasures
There is only one sofa in the shop. As I sink deeply into it to enjoy my bagel and coffee, I look up and discover the soot covered, jet-black ceiling! As the room was used as a kitchen for a 100 years, the color evolved naturally. Mr. Miyahata has gently brushed off all the dust and made it look very attractive.
The roughcast walls have had their pale green plaster pulled off to reveal a fascinating texture. To bring the house back to its original look, the couple spent more than a year renovating it. It must have been like slowly unearthing ancient treasures.
Kitchen 313 Kamiyuge was the birth home of Ms. Miyahata’s father, and it has been passed down the family and renovated with great care. Bagels and coffee are waiting for you here at the old house in the back alleys of Kamiyuge Port.
Kitchen 313 Kamiyuge
Address: 313 Yugekamiyuge, Kamijimacho, Echi District, Ehime Prefecture
Business hours: 11:00 – 15:30
Open: Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays
Parking: Free-of-charge parking area nearby (4 spaces)
※Bagels from 160 yen. Bread, 450 yen. Muffins, 200 yen. Brownies and other assorted baked sweets also on sale.
※Hot drip coffee, 350 yen. Seasonal hot chocolate, 450 yen. Seasonal juice, 450 yen.
■Ferry: Karoto Port, Innoshima Island ⇄ Kamiyugejima Port, Kamijimacho
Yuge Kominka Chosa Project Archives｜2012.4-12
※Population data from November, 2016.
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Kaori Masuda
Kaori Masuda I was born in Okazaki City, Aichi Prefecture and am a writer and a poet. I run Hoshimugi (https://hoshitsumugi.wordpress.com/), a workshop website dedicated to poems and essays. I spent many years in Tokyo and Kanagawa studying at university and starting my adult life there. I moved to Shikoku with my husband and son about 10-years ago, and am going to write about all the breathtaking spots we have here on the islands of Ehime. Ehime is really a fantastic place. Please come and see for yourself.
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