Hello Niigata Presents a Side of Japan You’ve Never Seen Before


A perfect blend of contemporary bustling cities, quiet towns and beautiful natural backdrop, Japan is filled with a myriad of inspiring and enchanting attractions. Away from the well-known Japanese cities such as Tokyo and Osaka, the charming Niigata prefecture resides beside the Sea of Japan. With its optimal geographical location, it is blessed with abundant sea, fertile land and natural hot springs — all waiting for visitors to discover.

Mediacorp TV channel okto will be presenting a stunning visual of Niigata to viewers through a two-episode travel documentary titled Hello Niigata. Thriving in fascinating elements of nature and culture, Niigata is recognised for its premium rice quality and breath-taking nature. By airing in-depth interviews with locals, Hello Niigata hopes to unearth the region’s best kept secrets. In addition to local tips on the best food, activities and hideouts, the programme also features an intimate conversation with Hiroyoshi Kamata from Albirex Niigata Singapore Football Club, where he will be providing an insider’s angle to his hometown.

In the first episode of the documentary, viewers will be introduced to the fresh local produce of Niigata – rice, sake and fruits. The documentary will feature the Unuma region where Japan’s most premium Koshihikari rice is produced. Bringing viewers on a journey across the gorgeous rice terraces on Niigata’s scenic hillsides – Echigo Plains, it will uncover the secret behind the region’s undisputed rice championship title.

At a media pre-screening of Hello Niigata, we were also treated to an amazing spread of Japanese traditional dinner, Niigata-style Sushi Gozen at Tomi Sushi.

The proud owner of Sado Aida Rice Farming Inc. introduces the Sado oyster-shell rice farming method which results in the cultivation of the renowned Aida Koshihikari rice variant.

Onigiri made from Niigata’s premium Aida Koshihikari rice is simple yet delectable.

Viewers of the documentary will be brought on a tour of a Japanese sake brewery showcasing the fermentation process of the premium rice. Blessed with fertile land and optimal weather conditions, Niigata produces an abundance of local produce from fresh seafood to premium fruits such as Le Lectir pears and Echigo Hime (Princess Strawberries). Be sure to catch the interviews with the locals to discover the hidden gems of Niigata’s cuisine and restaurant. The first episode also allows viewers to catch a glimpse of the beautiful natural landscape behind the works of many painters and artists.

Crafted from the premium Koshihikari short-grain rice produced in Niigata Prefecture, Koshihikari Echigo Beer is smooth, dry and crisp flavoured.

Tomi Sushi serves fresh and good-quality sashimi from Niigata.

Part of Tomi Sushi’s Niigata-style sushi gozen ($54++), the hand-made sushi is fresh and exquisite.

The grilled salmon is succulent and flavourful.

Fret not if you are unable to visit Niigata any time sooner; watch Hello Niigata on okto channel or quench your appetite at Tomi Sushi. With four locations across Millenia, Novena, Katong and Orchard, Tomi Sushi dedicates itself in taking diners on a genuine gastronomical journey of Niigata.

Hello Niigata will be shown on okto channel on 29 December 2016 and 5 January 2017 at 9pm.


About Author

Yi Xuan is a thrill seeker who has constant thirst for excitement, food and exploration. Bitten by the travel bug, she can't wait to taste her way around the world.

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