The Tsukiji Outer Market and Its Food Vendors

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Ready to dive deep into the heart of Tokyo's foodie paradise? We're talking about the iconic Tsukiji Outer Market. 

Once the bustling core of the wholesale action, this hotspot has transformed into the go-to spot for all food enthusiasts after its legendary wholesale section made its move to Toyosu. 

Located a minute's walk from the shimmering Tokyo Bay, the legacy of this market stands as tantalizing as ever. To make the most out of your journey into all of the deliciousness that this culinary gem has to offer, let’s talk about what makes this market so great — and where you should eat.

Tsukiji Outer Market: A Historical Food Haven

Oh honey, if walls could talk, Tsukiji would have a New York Times bestseller! Born out of the ashes of the great Kantō earthquake, this market became Tokyo’s glammed-up phoenix, rising to serve all of Japan's mouth-watering delights. 

Over the years, it's seen its share of ups and downs, like all divas do. Remember when the tuna auction and wholesale market shifted to Toyosu? Oh, the drama! But like a true queen, Tsukiji didn’t fade into the background; it reinvented itself, proving that, in Tokyo, traditions and modern tastes can work side by side.

Now, while some of the fresh seafood magic has moved to Toyosu, the Tsukiji Outer Market is still the heart and soul of street food in Tokyo. Each corner serves as a nod to the rich Edo era, with vendors who've been around longer than your fave pop stars. 

The love story between Tsukiji and Tokyo isn’t just in its fresh fish or the iconic sashimi. It's in the hustle and bustle of Tsukiji shijo station in the mornings, the nostalgic aroma wafting from the eateries in the afternoon, and the charm of retail shops that carry legacies of generations.

In essence, Tsukiji isn't just about food; it's a flavorful journey through Tokyo’s history. From sushi restaurants serving up age-old delicacies to modern fusion delights, all are waiting for you to give them a try for the first time. 

So, next time you find yourself here, take a minute to soak it all in — the history, the flavors, the vibes. 

1. Matcha Stand Maruni

Spilling the tea, Japanese style! Step into Matcha Stand Maruni, and you're in for a show. Picture this: you order a steaming matcha latte and bam! It's whisked right in front of you, swirling in an entrancing dance. 

All-natural, all-traditional, and with a dash of sweet cane sugar syrup. But wait, there’s more! 

Nibble on a tiny daifuku with every sip, making it a perfect tea rendezvous. And for those wanting to bring a piece of Japan home, the shop's paraphernalia section is a must-visit. Recreate these drinks at home and serve up some Japanese realness!

2. Kakigoya

Dive in, seafood lovers, because Kakigoya is about to serve you life! This isn’t your run-of-the-mill seafood izakaya. With a stall that screams fresh, get ready for a mouthful of plump oysters steamed to perfection, or if you're more of the daring kind, slurp 'em raw and fresh. 

Fancy some buttery, soy-soaked, sake-infused scallops? They've got you. And for those moments when you want to sip on something as you enjoy the Ginza views, their wine and draft beer selection will have you floating in Tokyo delight.

3. Nisshin Tasuke

Nisshin Tasuke isn’t your typical spot. They've redefined luxury and made eel, Japan’s lavish treat, accessible and downright scrumptious. 

Now, I know Japanese food can sometimes have our wallets crying, but here, eel isn’t about the bling; it's about the zing of flavors from food that might not have been on your list of things to try but must be if you want to make the most out of your visit.

Head inside and brace yourself for the iconic eel rice bowls. Feeling adventurous? Get the “giga” sized eel over rice — because if you're doing it, might as well go big, right? Oh, and darling, on the go? Their grilled eel skewers, with or without sauce, are sheer perfection.

4. Suga Shoten

Hold onto your chopsticks, 'cause Suga Shoten's about to throw a curveball. Nestled snugly in Tsukiji Outer Market, it's the quirkiest gem you'll find. Steamed in traditional goodness, this shop is all about dim sum delights. 

Bite into their juicy black pork dumplings — they're a meaty marvel from Abel farm pigs in the glorious Kagoshima prefecture. And their small meat buns? Ooh la la! Perfectly stuffed and with a thin layer of dough that’s just right. Suga Shoten's magic touch gives a Japanese spin to this Chinese classic.

5. Le Pain

We’re shifting gears, darling! Fresh pastries and brewed coffee? Yes, please! 

At Le Pain, it’s all about the bread, butter, and everything in between. Located on Namiyoke-dori, this bread shop is the perfect pit stop. If you're into something sweet with a Japanese touch, their red bean-paste croissants are out of this world. 

And if you're looking for something that screams indulgence — their cream-filled vanilla croissants are your match. On the savory end, their potato curry pies and whole grain egg sandwich will make you wonder why you didn’t discover this sooner.

6. Tsukiji Shouro Honten

A little history, a lot of yum! Tsukiji Shouro Honten started as a sushi shop in 1924 but switched things up during WWII. Today, they're all about the tamagoyaki — the Japanese omelets that’ll make you rethink breakfast. 

You can go classic and get it on a stick, or if you're feeling fancy, get the tamagoyaki sando. Imagine a juicy omelet with a smear of Japanese mayo tucked into soft shokupan. 

Between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., they let you try your hand at making tamagoyaki. You get to take your masterpiece home, and guess what? It's on the house!

7. Onigiri-ya Marutoyo

If you thought you knew rice balls, Onigiri-ya Marutoyo is here to school you. 

This isn’t just any rice ball joint — it's the place. Go big or go home is their motto with their one-size-fits-all approach: colossal. We’re diving into a treasure trove of flavors here, from roasted fatty mackerel to the exotic shiokara, which is salted fish innards for the uninitiated. 

The shachi-ten is the real showstopper, a rice ball with a whole fried shrimp hiding inside. If you ever find yourself roaming the bustling streets of Tsukiji Outer Market, this is where you refuel.

8. Torito Bunten

Tsukiji isn’t just a fish fan's paradise, and Torito Bunten stands as proof. This cozy diner, run by the pros at poultry wholesaler Torito, is all about that bird. 

Got a soft spot for teriyaki chicken? They've got you covered. More of a karaage aficionado? Enjoy the golden crunch that'll have heads turning from across the room. 

For the health-conscious divas, the mizutaki is a bowl of deliciousness brimming with chicken pieces and minced chicken balls. And their oyakodon — honey, it’s a bowl of steamed rice heaven topped with chicken and a gooey egg, caressed with their signature umami-rich tare sauce.

9. Tsukiji Masa

We’re going down an alleyway in Tsukiji, but not for any shady dealings — it’s for a fish burger! Tsukiji Masa has found a sweet spot between American junk food and Japanese perfection. Dive into the classic cod burger: a fish piece, all crunchy with its panko crumb coat, sitting on shaved cabbage, topped off with a slice of gooey melted cheese. 

But if you're looking to elevate that experience, give the shimesaba burger a whirl. Inspired by mackerel futomaki, this beauty comes with a tamagoyaki omelet, shiso leaf, and those delightful crunchy cucumber slices.

10. Tsukiji Uogashi

Everyone knows about the Tsukiji Fish Market, but not everyone knows about Tsukiji Uogashi, the exciting area surrounding the market that’s equally worth a visit. Consider it the behind-the-scenes star. A minute's walk from the main attraction, it's where you find the freshest of the fresh. 

Wander through its lanes early morning, and you'll see Tokyoites haggling for fresh fish, sushi restaurants stocking up, and retail shops shining in all their glory. And if your stomach grumbles, there are eateries galore. 

The sushi is so fresh; it’s like the fish just decided to take a nap on the rice. Plus, there's ramen, sashimi, and so much more to explore.

Ending on a Delicious Note

Tokyo's Tsukiji Outer Market isn’t your everyday foodie destination. It’s the dazzling diva of Japanese cuisine, and trust us, it’s serving up more than just a plate of fresh sushi. 

From the hip sways of namiyoke vendors to the finger-licking goodies sprinkled throughout its bustling avenues, Tsukiji is the place to eat, laugh, and live it up in Tokyo. 

It’s got that old-school charm with a dash of modern Tokyo Bay zest. So, whether you're here for that early morning seafood delight or aiming to strut your stuff down the lanes in the early afternoon, Tsukiji is the backdrop to your fabulous Tokyo food story. 


Matcha Stand Maruni

Suga Shoten

Head to the Toyosu Market and Tsukiji Outside Market, hubs of Japan’s Food Culture | Japan Travel

Shouro Honten

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