Toyama Bay seafood is perhaps best known for its incredible freshness, because of how surprisingly close Toyama Bay is to cities.
Fixed-net fishing is the most common type of fishing in Toyama Bay, and most of these fixed nets are located within twenty minutes of the fishing port. This means that seafood can be caught early in the morning and shipped out to stores and restaurants while it’s still incredibly fresh. In fact, much of the time, seafood in Toyama is eaten the same day it’s caught!
- Toyama Bay is where the warm Tsushima current meets the cold deep sea water layer, which is 1–2°C all year round. This environment is full of plankton, which are a major food source for fish. This all makes for delicious seafood.
- Rivers both large and small, as well as underground streams running from the Northern Alps and the Tateyama Mountains, flow into Toyama Bay throughout the year. This water is rich in both oxygen and nutrients, creating an ideal environment for sea life to thrive.
- The continental shelf in Toyama Bay is quite small, and the bay drops to depths of over 1,000 m unusually close to the coast. The bay’s sixteen underseas valleys make an outstanding living environment for sea life.
- The warm and cold currents and rough waves of the Sea of Japan can be a rough place for the sea life of Toyama Bay to grow up. As a result, Toyama Bay seafood has wonderfully firm meat, with delicious fattiness.
- Toyama Bay’s fishers use techniques like “oki-jime,” where seafood like Himi winter yellowtail is placed in ice water just after it’s caught, and these techniques ensure that Toyama Bay seafood is still as fresh as possible when it reaches the market.
- Toyama is one of the birthplaces of fixed shore net fishing in Japan. In Toyama’s kitchens, various techniques and preparation methods to best enjoy the many different types of seafood have become an everyday part of the local food culture, too.
They say that the people of Toyama are particularly discerning when it comes to seafood.
It’s no wonder, then, that in the seafood sections of supermarkets throughout Toyama, you’ll find lots of stickers advertising items that were caught just that morning.
For the people of Toyama, what others would consider extraordinary seafood is simply a part of ordinary life — what a luxurious way to live!