Minamiuonuma is an area in rural Niigata often referred to as yukiguni (snow country), but it could just as easily be known as rice country. There are fields upon fields of the crop being grown and harvested across the region throughout the year, and locals are extremely proud of the high quality koshihikari variant they produce. The annual Minamiuonuma Majidon Competition highlights some of this pride, with dozens of restaurants battling it out for the honor of creating the most popular donburi, or rice bowl dish.
This year's event comprises a total of 57 different entrants, each offering a unique spin on the chosen toppings for their rice bowl creation. There's everything from donburi topped with Niigata wagyu to surf 'n' turf inspired dishes mixing local beef and seafood, and even a Mexican style chicken over saffron rice offering available.
Prices for the various donburi across the 57 participating restaurants range from 600 yen to 3500 yen, so there's something to cater to all tastes and budgets.