Rotable is an open-air popup restaurant taking place in the picturesque port city of Owase.
The event, on Saturday, 4 November, will celebrate the rich local culture and exquisite seafood of Owase,
through meals cooked by renowned chef, Rimpei Yoshikawa, of Tokyo’s French bistro, "Pignon".

For both lunch and dinner seatings, fishermen, farmers and consumers will dine together around a shared table.
This meaningful backdrop will provide an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of each other’s worlds, create new friendships, and shape ideas for the future.

Experience the natural bounty of Owase
through all five senses.
Rotable -Outdoor Popup Restaurant-
  • Date:
    November 4, 2017 (Saturday)
  • Time:
    13: 00 ~ (Lunch session) /
    17: 30 ~ (Dinner session)
    ※ Reservation required
  • Venue:
    Tennmasou, 161 Tenmura, Owase City, Mie Prefecture
  • Cook:
    Rimpei Yoshikawa (Pignon, Tokyo)

The Story of Owase’s Seafood Splendor

Owase Bay is blessed with the natural conditions that endow a vibrant marine life: high rainfalls grow lush forests; nutrient-rich waters run into the bay from surrounding mountains; and the warm Kuroshio current flows up from Okinawa.

With over 200 species found in its bay, Owase has long been regarded as one of Japan's premiere fisheries regions, and the industry has shaped the local culture and community.

While Owase may be classed as a city, its tightknit community of welcoming, spirited locals, and their deep respect for the environment that supports their livelihood, makes it feel more like a quaint fishing village.

Takahiro Iwasaki

“Everyday I do my best to ensure that people can eat the most delicious fish. It is a physically demanding and risky job, so if people can understand the hard work that goes into catching fish, I would be very happy”

The sardines that Iwasaki-san pulls from his net shimmer blue and silver. Crucial to preserving this condition, he says, is sufficient ice - not too much or too little. Fishing requires a balance of sweat and sensitivity, elbow grease and a delicate touch - a duality mirrored in Iwasaki-san’s character.
Hajimu Iwasaki

“I want to introduce people to the different species of Owase seafood, so I am constantly visiting different ports to source these.”

As a second-generation fishmonger, Iwasaki-san has a trained eye for determining quality. But because catches change daily, he must also not just be able to pick the best fish, but respond to customers’ needs uniquely, and educate them about different varieties. His dedication, honesty and reliability has earnt him deep respect from buyers across Japan.


We are organising several workshops that will take place on the weekend of Rotable.
Details will be confirmed here, so please check back for updates.

November 4, afternoon
Flower arrangement using local wild flowers
5th November, early morning
Visit aboard one of the local fishing boats


Rotable CEO
Taro Yokoyama

“When I was onboard the fishing boat in Owase for the first time, I felt the deep connection between the ocean and the surrounding mountains. I wanted to share this feeling and the stories of the local community. ”

Trained at Pignon restaurant under Rimpel, Taro believes strongly in the need for food producers and consumers to understand each other's’ worlds and the need to remind people of the coexistence between people and nature.

To better understand the food they serve, Taro often visits the places, fishermen and farmers who supply their ingredients. He has visited Owase several times. After spending time with the fishermen and local community, he was inspired to share their stories and the natural beauty of Owase with the world, and started Rotable in 2017.

With a shared meal as the facilitator, Taro hopes to bring people together from urban and rural areas to realize the relationship between natural environment and food that comes from it, and create action for the revitalization and sustainability of Japan’s precious rural communities.

Matsumi Matsui

At 77 years old, Matsui is as sharp, passionate, and strong-willed as ever. When Tenmasou was threatened with demolition, she took to her red moped and went around town rallying support and funds to save the building. Her energy, sense of humor, and enthusiasm for preserving and revitalizing local culture, makes her a pillar of Owase and an inextricable part of the image of Tenmasou.

Owase Hinoki Interior Material Processing Cooperative Association
Yu Yoshida, Kusunokiushi wood shop
Shunsuke Tanaka, Tanaka Wood shop
Hidetoshi Kusunoki, Kusunoki Wood Shop
(from left photo)

The Owase Hinoki Interior Material Processing Cooperative Association has kindly donated hand-crafted tables and tableware to Rotable. The Owase forestry industry is over 300 years old, and the Association hopes to be able to develop new markets for the industry, in order to revitalize it and pass it on to the next generation.

Editor · Interview
Motomi Nakamura

Working as a freelance journalist, Motomi has dedicated her career to telling the stories of local food, nature and people of the Kihanto region.


Almost 100 years old, Tenmasou is an important symbol of the Owase area. The traditional-style Japanese house sits perched on a hill overlooking Owase bay, and from the entrance back to the ocean, the breathtaking vista is the meeting of mountains and the sea. Once endangered of being torn down, the building was rescued by the determination and fundraising efforts of the local community, and is now used a local cultural hub - a place for relaxation, arts and crafts classes, and seasonal events.


  • Address:
    Tennmasou, 161 Tenmura, Owase City, Mie Prefecture
  • TEL & FAX: