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Tuna head

イトーヨーカドー

Not the greatest picture in the world today, but it has a story to go along with it. I sort of sneaked the shot, as many stores don’t like pictures being taken inside. I don’t know if this store had that policy or not.

Anyway, I was on my way to see Outrage in Kawasaki, and I had a few hours to kill. Having once lived near the Mizonokuchi Station, I decided to visit the place for the first time in nearly 22 years. I checked out the old Itoyokado, which is in a new, much larger building than before. The grocery part of the store (my memory tells me that it used to only be groceries) is now in the basement, and it is huge–probably the largest grocery store I’ve seen in Japan, other than those on U.S. military bases. By American standards it would merely be large but anyway…

The cool thing about this store is they slice up a giant bluefin tuna right in front of the customers while explaining about all of the different pieces. The maguro (鮪 or まぐろ) parts are then auctioned off right on the spot. I say auction but the prices were fixed. The first customer to claim a piece by shouting out was able to purchase it so it felt like an auction. Each part went for 1,000 yen. Freshly cut maguro was being sold left and right. They were saving the head, pictured, for last.

In front of the head you can see Itoyokado was having a special on eel (うなぎ). Until Children’s Day (こどもの日) the price was only 880 yen. Note the koinobori on the sign.

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