7 Must Eat Kanazawa Food Specialties in 2023

In this article, we explore the foods Kanazawa is known for. The capital of Ishikawa Prefecture, this city is a popular daytrip destination from Tokyo thanks to the Hokuriku Shinkansen. Many love Kanazawa for its well-preserved Edo-era districts and regional crafts, but did you know that its food is also equally beloved? From Kanazawa crab to the ever popular “kaisendon” seafood rice bowl, here are some amazing foods to try while in Kanazawa.

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Kanazawa is one of the most beautiful cities in Japan, as it's known for a historical cityscape and traditional arts and crafts. There is lots to see and lots to do in Kanazawa. However, you should not forget about food.

As Kanazawa is well known for rice production and fresh seafood from the Sea of Japan,  you are going to have a great food experience there. Here are some of our recommendations for your food experience in Kanazawa. 

1. Kaitenzushi, Kaisen-don

In Kanazawa, you can enjoy very fresh seafood from the Sea of Japan. You may think sushi is very pricy, and I would say," yes,it is." If you are planning to visit a fancy sushi restaurant, it would cost you a lot.

So I highly recommend you to visit Kaitenzushi (Sushi-go-around). Thanks to the locational advantage, the quality of Kaitenzushi restaurants are quite high. You may be surprised at its freshness also be satisfied with its price.


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You can try Kaisen-don (bowl of rice with sashimi on top) too. You can enjoy a variety of seafood at one time. I recommend you to have Kaisen-don at fish markets as most of the owners offer you owner’s choice on the day. It might be a nice surprise for you to know the taste of perfectly fresh seafood. 



2. Snow Crab, Kobako Crab

It is very common for Japanese to have crab dishes during winter. Especially at ryokans, Japanese style inns, they offer snow crab as a special main dish. You can enjoy grilled ones, steamed ones, even crab sashimi there and you will definitely be satisfied with those dishes.


I would say you should try not only snow crab, but also Kobako crab (female snow crab) if you visit Kanazawa in the winter season. Kobako crab is a smaller than snow crab and there is not so much meat in it. However its miso (crab butter) is exquisite and it is worthwhile to try.


3. Kabura-zushi

This is a round cake shaped sushi called Kabura-zushi. Usually sushi means rice with sashimi on top, however this Kabura-zushi is one of different style of sushi. It put cured yellowtail, carrots and seaweed between thin sliced turnip. Kabura-zushi is a New Year's dish and is a perfect side dish for sake (Japanese liquor).


4. Jibuni

Jubuni is soy sauce-base stewed dish with thin sliced duck (or chicken) meat, shiitake mushroom, Japanese parsley and fu (Japanese wheat-gluten bread). This stew is thick, and this thickness keeps the umami taste of ingredients inside the stew.

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5. Kanazawa Curry & Rice

Japanese style curry & rice is very familiar to many non-Japanese as well as Japanese. Kanazawa curry & rice is served with tonkatsu (breaded pork cutlet) and shredded cabbage on it. It is good for your stomach and wallet friendly! 

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6. Fuku-Ume

This cute wagashi (Japanese confection) is a special sweet only for the New Year in Kanazawa. Fuku-Ume has a Japanese apricot shape. Japanese apricot is one of the symbols of an auspicious occasion. Fuku-Ume is a wafer filled with red bean-jam. You can enjoy the best combination of very thin skin of rice wafer and delicate sweetness of red bean-jam.

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7. Japanese Sake

If you like drinking, I highly recommend you to try the local sake in Kanazawa. Sake is made with water and rice. As Ishikawa prefecture (Kanazawa is the prefectural capital of Ishikawa prefecture) is one of the leading areas for rice product, the local sake in Ishikawa prefecture is known for its varieties, flavors and so on. Tedorigawa and Tengumai are especially famous as they won a gold medal at the International Wine Challenge.

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The information in this article is accurate at the time of publication.

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