Farewell To Tokyo’s Iconic Tsukiji Fish Market…
The world’s largest fish market is in Tokyo – the “Tsukiji” Market is one of the most fascinating places I have visited – and I had the pleasure of filming there with G4 and eating there as well – but I found out today the sad news: it’s officially closed…
A Shocking Closure!
I was saddened to hear this news: after a delay of almost two years, the fish market did indeed close its doors forever on October 6th – being moved after 85 years to a new location in order for the government to use the space for the upcoming Olympic games…
The Tsukiji fish market opened in 1935 and is one of Tokyo’s most popular spots for tourists to observe the tuna auctions early each morning. These huge sides of Tuna would auction off for as much as $6,000 each!
Here is a look at what it’s like to wander through the market in the morning – this is what I filmed while we were there for G4 TV with eh great team of Vinny Rutherford, Kristen Wheeler, Kristen Rutherford, Takeshi Fukushima, Nick Uemura and Corrado Caretto!
No More Tsujiki Tuna Auctions!
One of the market’s legendary activities was the daily tuna auction: before 4a each morning, vendors would show up to bid on huge Tuna, with a single side of the fish going for upwards of $6,000!
The market is being moved to a larger site, clearing the way for new roads that will be used for the 2020 Olympic games in Tokyo…the end of an era for those who live in Tokyo, and for visitors as well…
Time For One Last Visit With G4!
In 2010, a team from G4 TV went to Tokyo’s legendary market, led by our terrific Host Morgan Webb….and this is what it looks like to film at the fish market – here is some behind-the-scenes video of Morgan filming a standup:
Morgan had the chance to participate in the cutting of a giant tuna – in half! That’s Corrado, Takeshi, along with Kristen and Vinny, all working hard to bring this story him to our viewers…first, you give Morgan a sword AS LONG AS HER ENTIRE BODY!
Morgan’s $6,000 Slice Of Tuna!
Morgan spent time watching the fishmongers do their job – as this was a real cut she was going to make:
She sliced the fish in two, then stepped aside to allow the pros to finish the job:
Outside, it was time to film more sequences…the Tokyo fish market has a core area for wholesale fish sales, but ringing the facility are a never-ending array of shops selling all sorts of seafood!
In 2016, my wife Alex and son Jeff joined me there for what I thought was, at the time, the imminent closing of the market, so of course we had sushi for breakfast!
Here is more from that great trip to the market:
I will miss the classic look and feel of the place…
There were plenty of places to buy finger food – such as these fish sausages on a stick – which I was all set to buy, but got distracted by a series of tiny tiny tiny food stalls that were serving all of the fresh fish being cut up inside the market.
Check out this video!
Sushi For Breakfast!
What better way to begin a day than by having “sushi for breakfast!”
So, the process is easy: find a stall with an open seat, sit down, and then order something. What? Can’t understand the signs? Well, there’s not much you can do about that – there isn’t much english being spoken here…but what you DO have are friendly people who are honestly interested in helping you order – no matter how difficult it might be!
I ate breakfast at the fish market three days in a row – three days of sushi, sushi, sushi. Each stall is operated by master sushi chefs…and older Japanese women who, in my case, served me a bowl filled with yellowtail, sea urchin and rice. They spoke NO english, there were no english menus, and they were, I think, afraid that I was ordering wrong – and since I didn’t speak Japanese, and they didn’t speak english, they just yelled louder at me!
At the end of the conversation I had my bowl of fresh fish and urchin, and they just laughed and laughed and laughed…just another reason why I love Tokyo, one of the most spectacular cities in the world…
If you want to see more reasons why I love this city, see my story here:
Leave me a note and let me know if you had the honor of “sushi for breakfast” at Tokyo’s legendary fish market!
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