Last month, the Yardbird Team traveled to Hyogo, Japan to experience its unique food and beverage culture. If you missed the first photo story, check it out here.

Aside from the amazing seafood and beautiful sake that the area has to offer, one of the best aspects of our trip was meeting the people of Hyogo and hearing their stories. Not only was it a great bonding experience for the Yardbird crew, but it was also a chance for us to connect with people from Japan, and from around the world, who are equally passionate about quality food and beverage. There’s the Italian ice cream maker who’s married to a soprano and who has spent the last 7 seasons brewing sake. The eel specialist who can drink more than you could imagine but who’s back at work and completely on point in the morning. And the sake brewer who has been at it for 15 years and who still considers himself a novice.

Shot by Fung, these photos celebrate the people of Hyogo, Osaka, and beyond. Scroll down and stay tuned for more stories from our time in Japan.

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Elliot Faber and Matt Abergel by Akashi Bridge.
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The Yardbird crew gathers for a stone skipping competition.
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Matt Abergel has serious stone skipping skills.
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Elliot Faber and Yasuki-san on Awaji Island.
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The team and Mikihito Ibaraki hang out at Rairaku Brewery.
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Iris, Chef Matt, and Kenneth walk around Akashi.
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The team keeps warm at Tsubosaka Brewery.
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Matt Abergel talks to Norio Hayashi about anago.
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Grilled anago for sale.
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Norio Hayashi, the anago master.
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Elliot Faber and Mikihito Ibaraki in the koji room at Rairaku Brewery.
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Daisuke “Bunn” Kimura of Beyond Coffee Roasters in Kobe gives Chef Matt a sample of his latest brew.
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Bunn-san and Matt Abergel in Kobe, Japan.
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Shimada Syouten Tasting Room in Osaka.
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Nigori tasting.
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Japanese calligraphy.
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Japanese calligrapher in Osaka.
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Canned highballs in Osaka.
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New friends and old friends in Osaka.
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A grandma-run Tobacconist by day, and grandson-run Italian Izakaya by night.
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Miso tasting in Hyogo.
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Like father, like son.
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Blacksmith in Osaka demonstrates knife-making.
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Food and beverage lovers from Japan, Hong Kong, Italy, and the UK.
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An ice cream maker, writer, sake samurai, and butcher discuss nabe – Japanese hot pot.
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Elliot Faber and Gaetano Saccoccio.
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Bar Shu+Kura in Kobe.
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Lunch at Stand Sake Bar Tanaka.
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All smiles.
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Party at Trattoria Pizzeria Ciro.
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Kenneth Chan and Norio Hayashi.
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Sunday’s Nigori getting some love.
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Chef Itoh-San at Gohan.
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Kampai!
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Photoshoot.

 

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