Take a trip to Japan and visit Food Expo with Darrell Corti

Darrell Corti works in the wine section of his store July 29, 2008.
Darrell Corti works in the wine section of his store July 29, 2008. Sacramento Bee Staff Photo

How would you like to take a trip to Japan with internationally recognized wine and food expert Darrell Corti of Sacramento (pictured)? Along the way will be a stop at FoodEx Japan, the largest international food and beverage trade show-exposition in Asia.

Of course, all of this is vicarious.

For 11 days in March, Corti and Corti Bros. Market director Rick Mindermann traveled 2,000 miles through the country by cab, wagon, subway, bullet train and jet, visiting six cities. They dined at 29 different restaurants, cafes, and eateries, and spent a day tasting new-to-the-marketplace foods and drinks at Food Ex, with the thought of bringing some of the product lines to their store.

What was their best meal? "We ate at a yakatori house specializing in grilled skewered meats," Mindermann said. "We ate an entire shamo (game cock), cut into pieces. The breast was only seared on the outside, and mostly raw. It was better that the best seared ahi tuna I've ever had."

In Kyoto, Corti made a point of stopping at a McDonald's.


"He said he wanted to make sure that American culture was being properly represented in Japan," Mindermann said with a laugh. "He covers both ends of the food and beverage spectrum."

Midermann showed his expertise with camera gear and film-editing software, assembling a day-by-day blog of their excursion in 120 videos and 900 photographs. Check it out at :

"The blog site captures what it's like to travel with Darrell," Mindermann said.

Also at that link is Corti TV, an audiovisual window into Corti's world travels and the business of his store. In just over a year, more than 58,000 viewers in 134 countries have tuned in. Also: Word has it that another exotic trip could be coming up, this one in the fall. It too will show up at the blog site.

Corti added this thought: "The trip wasn't a blog - it was a real job."

Corti Bros. Market is at 5810 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento, (916) 736-3800,