The lively Kuromon Market is an amazing shopping arcade close to such tourist spots as Namba and Nipponbashi. Shops selling mouth-watering foodie treats that infuse the air with delicious aromas line both sides of the street. The best way to enjoy the Kuromon Market is to food hop! Leisurely stroll between the rows of shops sampling the meat, seafood, sweets, and anything you can get your teeth into.
We wanted to experience food hopping in all its glory, so we headed straight to Kuromon Market to see what all the fuss was about!
- Table of Contents
- What sort of place is Kuromon Market?
- 1. Ever popular! Maguro-ya Kurogin specializes in Pacific bluefin tuna
- 2. Maruzen Meat Shop: Taste the finest beef right there and then
- 3. Kushisei: Amazing grilled seafood!
- 4. The Onigiri Burger: A delicious fusion to finish your food tour
- The Information Center is a good place to take a break.
What sort of place is Kuromon Market?
Major sightseeing spots in Osaka are divided into the Kita area, of which Osaka Station and Umeda Station are central, and the Minami area centered around Namba Station. The Kita area has a lot of department stores and other shopping facilities, while the Minami area is characterized by the vibrant Osaka atmosphere of Dotombori and Shinsaibashi.
Kuromon Market is a shopping arcade located in the Minami area. The market gets its name, which in English literally translates to “Black Gate”, from the nearby black main gate of the Enmyoji Temple.
You can get to Kuromon Market easily from the No. 10 Exit of the Osaka Metro Nipponbashi Station. Go up the stairs from underground and at the top turn to the left; after walking about 20 seconds you will see a pet shop on the corner; turn there and you will be at the entrance of the Kuromon Market.
About 150 shops and restaurants offering fresh seafood, meat, Japanese sweets, and other sundries line the 580-meter-long arcade. There are many types of food, such as skewers, that you can eat while strolling through this vibrant arcade offering all sorts of delicious treats.
So let’s get to the good stuff: the food!
1. Ever popular! Maguro-ya Kurogin specializes in Pacific bluefin tuna
A 5-minute walk brings you to the Maguro Kurogin that is always packed. This shop is famous for its incredibly flavorful fresh tuna that is filleted right at the front of the shop.
Here they use the fish in its entirety, and you can enjoy your favorite types of tuna in bowls, sushi, or sashimi. If you’re not sure what to pick, here’s a quick explanation of the different parts of tuna: akami [red lean tuna] has very little fat content, otoro [fatty tuna] melts in your mouth the moment you bite into it, chutoro [medium-fatty tuna] is somewhere between the other two, and the rather rare kamatoro [fatty tuna from around the collar bone] is more luxurious, meaning only two servings can be made from one fish.
Among the popular dishes offered is the Salmon Otoro-don that contains a heaping portion of salmon, otoro, akami, and salmon roe served on a bed of the shop's original sushi rice. The harmony of the different textures and flavors of the tuna is brought out exquisitely in this bowl dish. This was definitely a good start to our food tour!
- Address 2 Chome-11-1 Nipponbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, 542-0073
- Phone Number 06-4396-7270
Open: 8:00 a.m. ~ 6:00 p.m. (Closes when sold out: eat-in corner open until 3:00 p.m.)
2. Maruzen Meat Shop: Taste the finest beef right there and then
The highly popular Maruzen Meat Shop specializes in Kobe beef and Japanese Black Beef. The shop is located next door to Maguro-ya Kurogin. It has often been covered by international media and as a result is visited by many overseas visitors every day. The reason for Maruzen Meat Shop’s popularity stems from the quality and marbling of the beef which is carefully selected. You'll be able to enjoy the juicy and delicious flavor of this Japanese black beef no matter which cut you order.
One great thing about this shop is that they will grill the beef you purchase at no charge, perhaps the only shop in the world to do so. Select the cut of Japanese Black Beef from the show case and then sit in the eat-in section to the side of it and watch as the meat is grilled before your very eyes.
Taking a bite of the steak hot off the grill, the flavor of this fine beef will explode in your mouth and the texture is so tender you will moan with pleasure. It's hard to believe that this amazing flavor is achieved using only salt and pepper for seasoning.
The highest quality Japanese black beef is called Kobe Beef, and though it tends to be a bit expensive, starting at 2,000 yen, the quality and marbling of the beef is incomparable to any other kind of beef. This exquisite meat is definitely worth its price!
Maruzen meat shop丸善食肉店
- Address 2 Chome-11-2 Nipponbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, 542-0073
- Phone Number 06-6537-9229
Open: 7:30 a.m. ~ 7:00 p.m.
Closed: always open
3. Kushisei: Amazing grilled seafood!
If you head back a little ways towards the entrance from Maguro-ya Kurogin and Maruzen Meat Shop you will come to Kushisei, a shop that specializes in grilled seafood. Gigantic lobster and king crab are stacked up with other types of seafood at the front of the shop, and from these you can choose your favorite ingredients and have them grilled on the spot. The aroma of seafood being grilled filling the air is sure to whet your appetite. There is always a crowd gathered in front of the shop and once inside you can enjoy watching the seafood being grilled.
Plump, delicious scallops from Hokkaido bubble in their juices as they are grilled. The flavor of the scallops suffusing your mouth with the first bite is so delicious you’ll find it hard to stop eating them. From 400 yen each (including tax), which is reasonable by comparison.
- Address 2 Chome-2-17 Nipponbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, 542-0073
- Phone Number 06-6647-5677
Open: 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Closed: no fixed holidays
4. The Onigiri Burger: A delicious fusion to finish your food tour
If you turn right at the corner of the first street after entering the Kuromon Market you will come to the Onigiri Burger that serves food you can eat with one hand (if your other hand is busy holding all your other snacks!). It is a shop that specializes in rice balls resembling hamburgers, the ingredients sandwiched between patties of rice.
Steamed rice is layered on top of the high quality Ariake No. 2 seaweed purchased directly from the producer. They top it with a variety of ingredients, such as Spam and thinly fried eggs. These large “burgers” are highly satisfying and are perfect for eating while strolling about the market.
After you order the ingredients they are grilled on the spot and sandwiched between rice patties. Biting into the freshly prepared burger, the rice blends delightfully with the other ingredients in a most satisfying way. The crunchy nori really adds to the experience!
The mild texture of the tofu and the punch packed by the abura miso make this Chokubi Atsuage Abura Miso Nose indescribably delicious.
- Address 1 Chome-17-8 Nipponbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, 542-0073
- Phone Number 080-6848-0582
Open: 9:00 a.m. ~ 6:30 p.m.
Closed: always open
The Information Center is a good place to take a break.
Open from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. you can take a break from your walk about the market at any time between those hours and there is no charge. You are free to bring in any food that you have purchased and eat it here. You may also use the restrooms and in the ladies room there is a space where diapers can be changed. It is also possible to exchange money here and to have luggage held (for a fee). The center is located opposite the Maguro-ya Kurogin and Maruzen Meat Shop.
After a short break here, you will be refreshed and ready to continue your stroll and shopping! A visit to the vibrant Kuromon Market will provide you with lasting memories of your visit to Osaka.
KUROMON INFORMATION CENTER黒門インフォメーションセンター
- Address 2 Chome-12-23 Nipponbashi, Chuo-ku, Osaka, 542-0073
Open: 9:00 a.m. ~ 6:00 p.m.
Closed: always open
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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