Near the Tajimi Industry and Culture Center on the “Tajimi Ginza” is a quality Japanese-style restaurant called Fuki. Besides being a good choice for a downtown business dinner or date, it’s open for lunch with reasonable prices. A friend recommended it, so I ventured in.
As the higawari (daily special) lunch was fish (lots of fish on the menu), I chose to splurge a bit on the steak over a bowl of rice. Maybe it’s there to accommodate westerners with business in the neighborhood.
The talented chef quickly fired up the grill and set my order sizzling and flashing, soon bringing me an unmistakably Japanese steak meal on a lacquerware tray. Lean and juicy, and not at all skimpy on the beef, this is well worth the price. Not just a lonely, diminutive decorated dollop of filet you feel you’re supposed to worship in the center of a large plate before rationing to five or six bites. This might be your way to have a decent steak for lunch once in a while without it feeling like an expensive affair for some special occasion.
Businesspeople seem to go there for lunch a lot, sitting at the handsome rough-hewn wood slab counter in the front. There’s a tatami mat dining area in the back that must take dinner flow. There were ashtrays at the counter, but fortunately the only person lighting up was the chef with my tender, centimeter-thick cut of beef flaming tantalizingly a few feet away. Besides tea during the meal, you’ll get coffee afterward.
For dinner, they’re open till 10, with last order around 9:30. At lunchtime, look for the easel-style menu outside the shop, just before the inviting, freeform pebble-cobbled, curvy-sidewalked Ginza street actually turns into the old covered arcade.
Coinciding with Sunday’s lighting of fires to send off the visiting souls who came during Friday’s Gion festival, a bookend festival was held around Oribe Street and the Tajimi Ginza covered shopping arcade yesterday.
On the way there, I saw this performance at a tiny shrine.
I don’t know what the deal was, but last night at about 6 PM, people were gathered around bonfires at at least three locations in Tajimi Honmachi.
This one was at Tajimi Ginza arcade.
Update: I found out this is an annual ceremony, traditionally on December 16th, but now sometimes moved to a nearby Sunday depending on the location. I’ve already forgotten what it’s called (Aki-something), but each town or neighborhood burns its own fire at the border with other towns, to pray to Buddhist deities for protection through the year.
The Tajimi Ceramics Festival is today and tomorrow, covering the area around Oribe street. The rain has ended, so come out and enjoy the many activities and sights.
There are street performers including a presentation of The Lion King, a stamp rally you can get a commemorative mug from, hands-on pottery making to try, galleries and exhibitions, a lottery, fireworks, food stalls of all sorts, and of course crafts (also on Nagase-Dori) and ceramic works for sale all over including from artists participating in the Tajimi Creators’ Market in the Tajimi Ginza covered arcade. Shuttle buses are available from Tajimi Station.
Above, some of the creative ceramic works for sale in the Tajimi Ginza. These cobalt pieces were made by friend Shiro Terakado.
Below, a kebab stall run by Turks from Nagoya. Every year I get one of their pita-type creations at this festival.
I recently stopped at this little sitting park beside Tajimi Shinmachi Ginza. Most of the shops in the old covered shopping arcade happened to be closed, so I’ll write about the Ginza itself another time.
The asphalt-floored park offers a chance to sit in a somewhat sheltered area while a radio broadcast (possibly FM PiPi, whose studios are nearby) is aired through the shotengai’s speakers. There’s a little pump echoing another one in the arcade itself.