Because of Toyama port’s close proximity to both fishing grounds and fishing ports, it is known as a “natural fish tank” for the great variety of fresh fish it yields.
You can enjoy Toyama port sushi (ten sushi pieces served with miso soup) made with locally grown rice and freshly caught local fish at around 60 sushi restaurants throughout the prefecture. Depending on the store, the dish retails for between JPY2,000 and JPY3,500, and if you book at least a day in advance you can expect a special extra something with your meal.
Toyama is a prefecture surrounded by mountains, starting with the Tateyama mountain range. It is filled with flavors for each season, from mountain vegetables to freshwater fish and wild game.
8 restaurants in the prefecture offer an extravagant degustation course using the produce of the prefecture’s mountains, starting at JPY10,000 (reservations required). In this degustation course you can enjoy the full extent of seasonal food Toyama’s mountains have to offer.
Toyama black is a uniquely black soup.
The soup originated after WWII with an idea to create a salty dish for laborers that could accompany rice. The mystery is that once you try this soy sauce based soup flavored with stock, you will definitely want to eat it again.
Masu sushi is one of Toyama’s classic flavors.
The flesh of pale pink trout in the dish is striking, evoking the refreshing aroma of young bamboo and cherry blossoms in full bloom. Under the trout, pure white vinegar rice peaks through, glistening like gemstones, inviting you to eat. Enjoy the unique take that each restaurant offers on the secret flavor of the dish, which has been passed down through generations for over 200 years.
Japanese glass shrimp (or broad velvet shrimp) are known as the jewels of Toyama port and have a unique creamy texture and a high quality, rich sweetness that you won’t find in anything else. The red snow crab that lives at depths below 800M is also sought-after for its juiciness and quality sweetness.
In this dish you can taste these leaders of Toyama port’s produce in one go. The dish is only offered between September and May when red snow crab is available.
4 types of water snails (whelk) are caught at Toyama’s port. They are known for their crunchy texture and their flavor of the sea and are often eaten raw as sashimi or in boiled dishes. In Uozu City in Toyama you can purchase the whelk on rice dish that fishermen used to eat at boarding houses after returning from a day’s work. One type of snail, “tsubai”, are boiled in their shells, bringing out the full flavor of the seafood and creating a broth full of stock with a gentle flavor.
The area around the Miyazaki shore in eastern Toyama prefecture is famous as a fishing ground for cod. Cod soup is a local dish made by stewing chunks of local cod with miso. You can enjoy the pure flavors of the original ingredients in this simple dish.
National route 8 runs along the seashore and is known as the “cod soup road” as it is lined by the signs of many stores offering cod soup.
Yellowtail hardened by the rough waves of the Japan Sea in winter have both a wonderful flavor and perfect layer of fat. The Himi yellowtail is particularly well-known throughout Japan as a brand of extremely high quality.
Available from November through to February, winter yellowtail can be enjoyed in numerous specialty dishes including sashimi, yellowtail shabu shabu, grilled with salt or boiled with daikon horseradish.
In spring the port of Toyama is bathed in a magical blue-white light and the firefly squid must come up from the deep sea in large schools for spawning.
Their fertile bodies measure up to 5-6cm and, when eaten, their inner sacks burst open, filling your mouth with an exceptional flavor. They can be purchased as souvenirs, prepared with flavors such as vinegar miso or pickled with salt.
Toyama is one of Japan’s leading homes of high-quality, select water with an abundant, natural supply. Toyama’s local sake (rice wine) is made from this pure water and delicious local rice, and a number of choice sake brands well known throughout Japan are the pride and joy of their Toyama brewers. Pair some delicious sake with some of Toyama’s seasonal fresh fish and for a purely indulgent experience.