Tale of the Eagle: Sake, snow and sustainability

Discover the gastronomic paradise of Iwate's Hachimantai area


All it takes is one glance at the breathtaking snow-capped mountains and a deep breath of the fresh mountain air, and there is no denying that the Hachimantai area of Iwate is a natural paradise! Where nature abounds, you’re guaranteed to find incredible local produce and a rich gastronomic culture. 

Over two days and one overnight stay, this tour will take you on a journey to discover the local produce, cuisine and culinary traditions of the Hachimantai region. 

The tour begins at Washino-o sake brewery, one of Iwate Prefecture’s most well known breweries, making delicious sake since 1829 at the foot of the dramatic Mt. Iwate. The name Washino-o (tail of the eagle) refers to Mt. Iwate, also known as Mt. Ganju (giant eagle) due to the shape created on its peak once spring arrives and the snow begins to melt away, revealing an eagle with its tail and wings outstretched. 



After an exclusive tour of Washino-o Sake Brewery with eighth generation owner, Mr. Tomo Kudo, enjoy a unique blend of local craft as you taste some of the breweries finest drops in beautiful sake cups hand-crafted by local artisans. 

In the evening, enjoy the rare chance to experience ‘tamawari’, the process of blending freshly pressed sake with water to create different flavours and aromas. Take your sake sommelier skills to the next level by sitting down to a feast of local cuisine and experiment pairing each dish with a range of sake varieties. 

After spending a comfortable night at Hachimantai Mountain Hotel, wake up to wintery mountain scenery. Enjoy a ride on the area’s retro ‘Bonnet Bus’ through the snowy countryside to Matsukawa-sou, a local hot spring inn. Take a long soak in the milky waters of the outdoor hot spring bath before enjoying another feast of local dishes for lunch. Roll yourself back onto the bus and return to Morioka Station where the tour will come to a close. 



What’s Included

> Overnight-stay at an auberge in Hachimantai (twin share, single room available at additional cost)
> All tour/activity fees (unless stated otherwise)
> Lunch x 2, dinner and breakfast
> Transport (from pick-up to drop-off at Morioka Station)
> English speaking guide

Not included

> Any additional meals and drinks
> Anything not included in the above 'included' list
> Fees associated with optional tour

Meeting place



Meet your guide at Morioka Station.


Depart from Morioka Station by private bus.


Arrive at ‘Washino-o’ sake brewery.

Learn more about the sake making process and unique characteristics of the brewery during a guided tour of the facilities by eighth generation brewery owner Mr. Tomo Kudo. 

Enjoy a light treat of handmade soba noodles and ‘amazake’ (sweet, non-alcoholic sake) in the historic Edo period rooms attached to the brewery building. 


Stop at nearby Sawaguchi sake specialty store for a tasty lunch. Enjoy an ‘obento’ style lunch box paired with some limited edition ‘Washino-o’ sake and maybe pick up a couple of bottles to enjoy later or gift to friends/family. 


Don’t forget to make friends with resident furry store-keeper, Momo-chan!


Arrive at your lodging for the evening – Hachimantai Mountain Hotel. 


Mr. Kudo from Washino-o will rejoin your group for a very special activity called ‘Tamawari’. This is the process where the sake brewer will add fresh water to the freshly pressed sake (Genshu) to adjust the alcohol content. Discover the incredible impact just a subtle change in the amount of added water can have on the overall taste and aroma of the sake! 

That moment when everything comes together – on your plate! 

Indulge in a feast of tasty dishes all made with local ingredients from the Hachimantai area, including many that you’ve come across during your journey thus far. Mr. Kudo will join you to give suggestions for pairing each dish with his sake. Experiment by comparing the flavour and aroma of different varieties using different shapes and styles of cups and glasses hand-crafted by local artisans. 


Wake up to beautiful snowy scenery! 

Jump aboard Hachimantai’s famous retro ‘Bonnet Bus’ for a journey through the wintery countryside to Matsukawa-sou, a local hot spring inn. 


Soak yourself in the milky waters of the outdoor bath at Matsukawa-sou. Enjoy the warmth even as the snow falls around you. 


Enjoy another tasty local meal at Matsukawa-sou for lunch. 


Return to Hachimantai Mountain Hotel to pick up your luggage, before heading back to Morioka Station. 


Tour ends at Morioka Station. 





JR Morioka Station
Two days, one night
max 20 persons
43000 JPY (twin share) (※approx. $395 USD)
Sign-up Deadline
Reservations accepted until Sat, Feb 15 (2020)
Cancellation Policy
Up to three days prior, no cancellation fee.
Two days prior: 20%
Day before: 30%
On the day: 100%
If the minimum number of participants is not met the event will be cancelled.


Basic Plan

Price 43000 JPY (twin share) (approx. $395 USD)

Are you looking for a ‘deeper’ kind of travel?

At Tohoku ‘Local Secret’ Tours we can also suggest custom-made itineraries to meet your travel needs! You want to experience what’s unique to Tohoku.
You want to visit the places where the locals go; the places not listed in guidebooks!
You want to meet and interact with local people. You want to take your time exploring Tohoku so you need a guide, or perhaps an English-speaking driver...
...whatever you need for your Tohoku travel, we have it covered!
Feel free to contact us with any inquiries. We will respond within two business days after receiving your message.

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Related Tags

#Miyagi #foodie #localfood #eat #Sendai #drink #experience #sake #nightlife #daytrip #Iwate #morning #seafood #countryside #local #culture #vegetarian #vegan #Aomori #sustainability

43000 JPY (twin share)

Book now!