Most people who go to Kyoto go to Nishiki market often get dropped at the wrong place and needlessly walk missing a major part of the market. So if you go start here and be sure to show this to your taxi driver and it’s Takakura dori (street is dori) and Nishiki-dori.
Once you get off the car walk all the way up to the end of the market and you’ve seen it. And on the way consider to try oysters something I’ve never done before but it seems popular. So if you enter the market at the right place, you’ll see the oyster bar after ten steps on your right side.
Actually this market started fishmongers market and still houses a few establishments selling fish to locals. But the focus is more about foods and snacks and the street is side lined with more than 100 food stalls and shops trying to via for customers strolling. It is filled mostly with seasonal ingredients and I found this fully ripe organic kaki oozing with juices from the top.
Walking into the market you should be a food lover otherwise you are exercising patience while vendors try to sell you small snacks and people bump into each other like bumper cars. I walk and stop to ask about this dried fish hanging and get hurried on by the traffic.
At the same time I enter this small shop to check out their quality products that are displayed for clients to touch, even taste but always ask and let the vendors staff serve you. I see some gold leaf for sale and it catches my eye. I like using edible gold especially at the time of the New Year: https://mesubim.com/2016/01/15/23-karats-edible-gold-video/
It is not common in Japan to help yourself and it becomes awkward if clients manhandle products. Remember Nishiki market is a tiring place and Japanese are very patient at least most are.
This vendor was offering what she calls the worlds best nuts, well I knew what she meant and I tried some. It is customary to “try and buy”, a polite way of saying “thank you” and vendors appreciate when tourists respect and enjoy their products. The Japanese are very proud and appreciate when foreigners taste but not before asking even if samples are for free. Politeness means asking and please no touching displays because vendors get frustrated.
Most Nishi visitors are there for relaxing but some are there to visit Aritsugu a well known knife maker selling premium products to tourists from all over the globe. No doubt the quality and marketing and it’s easy to find just a short distance west of Teramachi Shopping Arcade. But if indeed you are a knife lover you can check other shops nearby and see their selection as well.
Aritsugu is almost always packed with clients admiring sharp blades and other speciality cooking utensils. If you buy a knife they will put a final edge on the knife and aengrave your knife with your initials.
A visit to the market isn’t a market proper visit without ice cream and not just normal ice cream – make sure to try the sesame ice cream as its delicious.
Categories: Life Cycles