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Host: Bonnie and Masao

Nara, Japan

USD
$38-$80 per person

Authentic Japanese cooking class in Nara with a fun professional chef

Host offerings
  • House
  • Professional cook
  • Pets
  • Vegetarian
  • Alcohol
  • Transportation
  • Cooking experience
  • Market visit
  • Food tour

Meet Bonnie and Masao

Meet Bonnie and Masao, a warm and hospitable couple who live in a beautiful and peaceful neighborhood of Nara. They are passionate food lovers who enjoy meeting people and sharing their food stories. Bonnie is originally from the USA but has been living in Japan for over four decades. Masao spent his career honing his artistic skills - he worked as a chef on a passenger ship and at some restaurants in the United States before returning to Japan to pursue his craft of wooden furniture making. Masao is an artist, and cooking is his primary art form. The primary cook in the family, Masao is constantly encouraged by Bonnie who in is love with Masao's food. His refined culinary skills won over friends who often drop over for a home-cooked meal, an integral part of the family's culture. They look forward to welcoming passionate food-lovers from all over the world. If you are visiting the gorgeous Horyu-ji temple or Nara Park to check out the friendly deer, make sure to stop by Bonnie and Masao's to cook, taste, laugh, and learn with this lovely couple!

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-6 guests) Bonnie or Masao will pick you up at the main exit of Ikoma station, and drive you a few minutes to their home. As you step inside their house, you will be instantly transported by their hospitality and generous open spirit, making you feel instantly at home. Enjoy a delicious authentic Japanese meal prepared by Masao that might include dishes such as teriyaki chicken cooked over charcoal, takikomi-gohan (steamed, seasoned rice with vegetables and chicken), miso soup, Kinpira-gobou (sweetened soy-flavored burdock root) and the traditional Japanese spinach topped with sesame.

Cooking experience: (1-6 guests) Join Masao in his kitchen and roll up your sleeves for a hands-on cooking lesson during which you will learn to make authentic Japanese dishes from scratch. As you chop, stir-fry, assemble and sauté, Masao will teach you about Japanese cuisine and some of his favorite cooking techniques. Learn about sourcing the freshest ingredients, how to vary recipes, and fun ways to make your dishes look gorgeous. The cooking portion of your experience will take about 1-1.5 hours.

Market visit: (1-6 guests) Begin your experience with a visit to the local farmer's market where Masao will teach you about the local produce on offer. Learn how to choose the freshest produce and about local Japanese ingredients you may not be familiar with. You may even purchase a few, local vegetables for your cooking class. Return to his home with a basket of produce in your hand that you will craft into an authentic Japanese meal with expert advice from a professional chef.

Notes: Bonnie and Masao do not serve alcohol but you are welcome to bring your own alcohol. Their car can fit 5 people max including the driver, so they will make 2 round-trips if there are 5 or 6 people in your group.

Languages spoken: Japanese, English

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Teriyaki chicken
  • Takikomi gohan
  • Miso soup
  • Kinpira gobou
  • Tekka donburi

Traveler reviews

This is a new host who does not yet have any reviews. You can see reviews of our other Nara Traveling Spoon experiences on TripAdvisor:
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Bonnie and Masao

$38-$80 USD

per person
100% VETTED
Learn more
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee or your money back
  • Free cancellation up to 48 hours in advance
  • Credit card is not charged until the host confirms your booking
  • Private experience
Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$54 $46 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$64 $54 $42
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$80 $68 $54
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$54 $46 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$64 $54 $42
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$80 $68 $54
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
12:00pm-2:00pm 6:00pm-8:00pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
11:00am-2:00pm 4:00pm-7:00pm
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
10:00am-2:00pm 3:00pm-7:00pm

Meet Bonnie and Masao

Meet Bonnie and Masao, a warm and hospitable couple who live in a beautiful and peaceful neighborhood of Nara. They are passionate food lovers who enjoy meeting people and sharing their food stories. Bonnie is originally from the USA but has been living in Japan for over four decades. Masao spent his career honing his artistic skills - he worked as a chef on a passenger ship and at some restaurants in the United States before returning to Japan to pursue his craft of wooden furniture making. Masao is an artist, and cooking is his primary art form. The primary cook in the family, Masao is constantly encouraged by Bonnie who in is love with Masao's food. His refined culinary skills won over friends who often drop over for a home-cooked meal, an integral part of the family's culture. They look forward to welcoming passionate food-lovers from all over the world. If you are visiting the gorgeous Horyu-ji temple or Nara Park to check out the friendly deer, make sure to stop by Bonnie and Masao's to cook, taste, laugh, and learn with this lovely couple!

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-6 guests) Bonnie or Masao will pick you up at the main exit of Ikoma station, and drive you a few minutes to their home. As you step inside their house, you will be instantly transported by their hospitality and generous open spirit, making you feel instantly at home. Enjoy a delicious authentic Japanese meal prepared by Masao that might include dishes such as teriyaki chicken cooked over charcoal, takikomi-gohan (steamed, seasoned rice with vegetables and chicken), miso soup, Kinpira-gobou (sweetened soy-flavored burdock root) and the traditional Japanese spinach topped with sesame.

Cooking experience: (1-6 guests) Join Masao in his kitchen and roll up your sleeves for a hands-on cooking lesson during which you will learn to make authentic Japanese dishes from scratch. As you chop, stir-fry, assemble and sauté, Masao will teach you about Japanese cuisine and some of his favorite cooking techniques. Learn about sourcing the freshest ingredients, how to vary recipes, and fun ways to make your dishes look gorgeous. The cooking portion of your experience will take about 1-1.5 hours.

Market visit: (1-6 guests) Begin your experience with a visit to the local farmer's market where Masao will teach you about the local produce on offer. Learn how to choose the freshest produce and about local Japanese ingredients you may not be familiar with. You may even purchase a few, local vegetables for your cooking class. Return to his home with a basket of produce in your hand that you will craft into an authentic Japanese meal with expert advice from a professional chef.

Notes: Bonnie and Masao do not serve alcohol but you are welcome to bring your own alcohol. Their car can fit 5 people max including the driver, so they will make 2 round-trips if there are 5 or 6 people in your group.

Languages spoken: Japanese, English

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Teriyaki chicken
  • Takikomi gohan
  • Miso soup
  • Kinpira gobou
  • Tekka donburi

Traveler reviews

This is a new host who does not yet have any reviews. You can see reviews of our other Nara Traveling Spoon experiences on TripAdvisor:
Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$54 $46 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$64 $54 $42
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$80 $68 $54
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$54 $46 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$64 $54 $42
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
$80 $68 $54
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
12:00pm-2:00pm 6:00pm-8:00pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
11:00am-2:00pm 4:00pm-7:00pm
Market Tour+ Cooking Experience + Meal
10:00am-2:00pm 3:00pm-7:00pm
FAQ

    You can cancel your reservation for free up until 48 hours before your experience. Experiences within 48 hours are not refundable.

    If you have a question for your host, you can include a note in the field "Write a note to your host" during the booking process. Once your booking is confirmed, you will be emailed your host's direct contact information and you will also be able to message the host through your profile. You can always cancel your booking and receive a full refund 48 hours or more before your experience. If you have other questions you can also email us at reservations@travelingspoon.com.

    Most of our hosts are able to accommodate dietary restrictions and allergies, including vegetarian and gluten free options. For vegetarian travelers, we have an icon on each host profile to indicate whether that host can also offer a fully vegetarian menu. There is a section in the booking form to note any allergies or dietary restrictions which will be sent directly to your host.

    Some hosts offer alcohol as an optional add-on for travelers who are of legal drinking age. Pricing for alcohol is visible on the host profile page and includes one to two glasses of wine, beer or local alcohol.

    Have a flight or other tour planned and can’t make the timing provided? If the timing listed on the host’s profile doesn’t work for you, our hosts can often accommodate timing changes. Because all of our experiences are private our hosts are happy to tailor experiences to meet your travel needs. Simply note your request in the booking process.

    Your card will not be charged until your host accepts your booking. Typically hosts respond to bookings within 72 hours. In the event your host is unavailable on your selected date and your host rejects your booking your credit card will not be charged.

    Your host's detailed contact information, including their phone number, address, and direction notes, will all be provided immediately upon successful confirmation of your experience (after your hosts accepts your booking and your credit card is successfully processed). This information will be emailed to you to the email address you used to sign up, and will also be visible on your Traveling Spoon profile.

    All prices are noted per person prices unless otherwise specified. Transportation is typically charged on a per car basis. Children aged 5-11 are 50% off, and infants aged 0-4 are free. Hosts set their own prices and Traveling Spoon marks up the experiences; on average hosts receive over 70% of the price paid by the traveler.

    100% of Traveling Spoon experiences are private! Just you and your host and host’s family.

    Hosts typically respond to booking inquiries within 72 hours. If for some reason you have not heard from your host or if you have any questions you can always contact us at reservations@travelingspoon.com.

    Your safety and security are our top priority. To ensure this, Traveling Spoon personally vets 100% of all hosts, including an in-person host visit, to ensure each host and experience meets our strict quality requirements.

    Some hosts offer transportation as an optional add-on for travelers. Typically this is round trip transportation with pick up and drop off at your hotel. Pricing is quoted per car. Specific instructions for transportation will be provided in your confirmation details when your booking is confirmed.

    Many of our hosts accommodate solo travelers. You can see if a host accepts solo travelers by looking at the traveler range found next to the experience descriptions on the host profile (indicated by the numbers in parentheses next to "In-home meal", "Cooking experience" and "Market visit").

    Most of our Traveling Spoon experiences are incredibly family friendly and can accommodate infants and children. If a host is unable to accommodate children that will be noted in the “Notes” section of their profile. Our child pricing policy is children aged 5-11 are 50% off, and infants aged 0-4 are free.