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Tokyo/Kyoto 'minimalist' ceramics, Katsuobushi etc to USA, kaiseki kids and knife sharpening

happynarwhals | Oct 13, 201604:58 PM


Going to Tokyo and Kyoto on Sat for 10 days and just thought you experts out there might know the answers to a few questions!

(background.. lived worked in Tokyo and Kyoto about 20 yrs ago, speak rusty Japanese)

I was thinking of taking my Tsukiji masamoto knife and another one to be sharpened - is it crazy to do this? Will any place sharpen them for me in a few days/hours? Can I take the Masamoto back to the Tsukiji store where I bought it and would they sharpen it in say 30 mins? any idea of cost- would they do the non Masamoto knife for me or is it better to take both to a nonnMasamoto place?

Kaiseki- 10 yr old kids - very used to J'se food. Would love to take them to a kaiseki restaurant or something similar that showcases seasonal local ingredients, beautifully presented etc. Any recommendations in either city? We could go for lunch if a little cheaper- wld want to keep it at 100 a head max!!!

and.. I LOVE very simple ceramics- pure white or black rice bowls, matt textures, simple lacquer ware no ornamentation. With kids I can't spend hours browsing through kappabashi or the Tsujiki kitchen area- and not so keen on generic stuff they tend to have a lot of- are there any stores that have a good selection of the stuff I like ? I lust after the stuff of for instance but can't find any store that sells it- no idea of price either!!

And some news for you all- I wanted to know for sure if you can bring Katsuobushi whole fish blocks (to make dashi) and other dried or canned fish stuff from Japan such as fish snacks, dried squid etc- -and also seaweed.

The answer is yes!!! yipee.

After being passed from office to office at USDA and US customs today I was told commercially packed seaweed and dried, canned, powdered fish is all OK. (regulations are different for catfish which seems to have its own office deep in the USDA but no c/f on my shopping list!) .

You have to declare the fish and fish products and it's admissible (:

Thank you for any tips you send my way- am a big foodie and also looking for a good

sushi place that might have a somewhat English-speaking chef so my husband doesn't have to talk through me and because my Japanese is rustier than I want it to be. We love all kinds of fish and so do the kids (who are 1/2 Asian and had their first sashimi (uni) age 1 and 3 in Tsukiji years ago!!)

And any other good food places .. please share (: Love everything from hole in the wall oden places (used to go with J'se coworkers but am sure all those places have gone) to RAMEN!!! to kaiseki. Hotel will be close to Tsukiji (and any idea what time I need to get to the tuna auction with kids to snag a vest to see the auction now it's less of a tourist season - do kids even need a vest?)

am so excited!! (but not about the 14 yr flight- yikes)

Arigato gozaimasu to all

Tsukiji Market
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