TSUKIJI FISH MARKET (part 3)

 

Part of the experience is that you must get to Sushdai and try the Sushi. We made our way over there and sure enough, there was a line up around the block and it was already getting very hot so we nixed the idea. I did take a photo though. If you are in the front half of the line (seen here), they are nice enough to hand out water to cool you off. You can see the start of the 2nd half of the line on the right … near the road, at least 1.5 hour wait.

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The area all around the market is lined with stalls. We spent time wandering around and just looking.

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I cannot wait to come back here and shop, so many eye catching delicacies to try and simply so different that the local IGA.

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Ah, snails.

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Small shrines are scattered around.

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In the end, I was the only one who was hungry so I had tempura shrimp in a beef broth with noodles at this shop. I stood by the road, eating off of a stack of boxes that served as their overflow seating. It was very busy and very, very good.

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It was the perfect way to finish off the visit to the market.

TSUKIJI FISH MARKET (part 2)

 

The fish market has many forms of transportation; gas shuttles, two tire scooters, three tire scooters and the old fashioned hand cart. A pile of old ones were stacked down an alley.

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Of course, old fashioned single speed pedal bikes were everywhere, ready to make a delivery. 

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And of course, where there is a need there is a supplier. This gentleman was fixing a lot of flat tires.

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TSUKIJI FISH MARKET (part 1)

 

A friend mentioned that when the family arrives in Tokyo the best thing to do is get out and see the Tsukiji fish market, which seems to make every “things you must do in Tokyo” list. The reasoning; your body clock is going to be a mess and you will be up very early. To get the most out of the market, you should be there for 4:30am to get in line for the great tuna auction.

Sure enough, I was up around 1AM (after an amazing 4 hours sleep) with the whole family was wide awake by 4:30am. We decided that we were not going to rush out for the tuna auction but would still get down there to enjoy the hustle and bustle of the market, leaving the apartment at 6AM (everything is pretty much done by 9am).

When we arrived, it was an absolute hive of activity. The motorized carts, delivery motor and pedal bikes that feed fish to a city of tens of millions, were everywhere. Step the wrong way and you could get run over (although they are immensely careful).

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The shuttle carts are an amazing little device. The circle in the middle is a huge wheel that you do not turn but press left and right to steer, with a throttle on the right foot. They accelerate quickly and turn on a dime. They were either loaded with raw fish (note the big tuna head on the right)

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or with styrofoam boxes packed with ice and fish for delivery. We happened upon a fishmonger filling the boxes with ice.

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The pace is so frantic that they need a police officer to keep it all flowing.

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You would think that a large fish market would give off some sort of nasty smell and that it would be messy. Neither was the case, it smelled “fresh” and was very clean. We happened on a indoor alley behind the stalls and were amazed at how clean it was. As we walked past this vendor, the wonderful smell of shrimp wafted down the laneway. Amazing.

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Now if we just knew how to read Japanese and figure out what everything was beyond the extremely obvious … This is clearly one spectacular cut of tuna (upper right).

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This looks interesting …. and I am game. As we tell the boys, you must try something at least 2 times before you decide that you do not like it.

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