Shopping on Kappabashi Street was a highlight of our visit to Tokyo. This street is a mandatory destination for anybody who loves food as much as we do.
A large, moustached chef atop a corner building welcomed us to Kappabashi Street – an extraordinary shopping mecca where tourists, home cooks and chefs shop for all kinds of pottery, kitchen tools and gadgets. You name it and it’s here, from cutlery to chopsticks to skewers to Japanese specialty cookware. The choices abound with a myriad of colors, shapes and unique Japanese flair.
We strolled along the street, perusing the 150+ shops filled with everything and anything for the home kitchen and restaurant. The variety and selection are truly overwhelming.
What to Buy on Kappabashi Street
The selection of pottery on Kappabashi Street is overwhelming in a good way. It would be impossible to walk down the street without finding at least one piece to buy. We bought a few special pieces at Tousyougama, a shop that stood out for the distinctive style of its pottery selection.
There are lots of chopsticks.
In fact, there are walls of chopsticks.
Interestingly, you can buy all types of fake, plastic food intended for restaurants to use for enticing customers with visual examples. We were intrigued by the diversity (sushi, spaghetti, sundaes, etc.) not to mention the high prices for faux food.
Some shops cater to caterers.
Other shops have tools for the takoyaki chef. We were tempted but knew that carrying something this heavy half way around the world didn’t make sense.
Knife Shopping on Kappabashi Street
The best part of Kappabashi Street, at least for us, was the excellent knife selection. We knew right away that Kama-Asa was the real deal. Apparently, it’s the oldest kitchen utensil store in Tokyo. The store’s service was excellent, and the knives were both plentiful and reasonably priced.
Once we made our purchase, an on-site artisan engraved Daryl’s name on the knife.
Our only regret is just buying one knife. Next time, we will buy another. Maybe we’ll even have it engraved with Mindi’s name.