Friday, August 3, 2012

Tokyo Farmers Markets: August

Hidamari at the Earth Day Market and most yummy homemade vegan food!
August in Tokyo is a month to watch out for, not least because of the infamously high temperatures and levels of humidity, but also because of Obon. One of the holidays I like best here, Obon sends people flocking back to their hometowns to celebrate and remember their ancestors while gathered with family. It's a lovely thing and a holiday I wish we had the equivalent of in America, but it is a schedule disruptor. I've checked market calendars as well as I can and will continue to do so, but peruse the links below carefully before heading out. I'll update as I can.

That said, the hubby and I are off on to what has become our second hometown, Hokkaido, during this month for biking and eating and vegetable hunting. I'll be in and out, but doing what I can to ensure your fun at the markets works out for the best!

SUN Grocery in Shinjuku
Saturday, August 4th
11am to 3pm
A once-a-month outreach effort by the students running a neighborhood grocery featuring fruits and vegetables from independent farmers.

Sunday, August 5
I could go wax on forever about how great this market is and how important it is for the future of Japanese farming. Instead, I'll just insist that folks go and see for themselves what great things the market and these innovative growers are doing.
10am to 4pm, Rain or shine!

Sunday, August 5 and Sunday, August 19
11am to 5pm
A nice sized market held on the terrace just in front of Ebisu Garden Place that will always be special to me for introducing me to dried natto and tea seedpods.
Saturday,  August 11 and Sunday, August 12
A gem of a market hidden away in one of Tokyo's high-end shopping districts offering seasonal favorites in a way that feels homey yet rather boutique-y.
11am to 5pm

Nippori Farmer's Market
Saturday, August 18 and Sunday, August 19
10am to 5pm
Another great market in the city found with a little help from friends, this one is sure to not disappoint. My first visit was wonderful despite cold temperatures and a smattering of rain. Plus, Tohoku growers are on hand sharing their best-of-the-best, so come on out to be part of the recovery and get something good to eat.
No map, but just head out the east exit and look for the green awnings!

Koenji Farmer's Market
Saturday, August 18
A new market I spotted while riding the train on a Saturday morning into the city center. That circle of red awnings in front of the Za-Koenji Public Theatre could only mean one thing! Sure enough, I found a small group of area growers and producers, and the bounty surely continues!
11am - 5pm

Saturday, August 18
A unique event in the heart of the city that a vegetable loving geek like me wouldn't miss for the world. What better way to get the healthy vitamins and minerals you need to sustain an evening of karaoke and izakaya hopping?
5pm - 8pm

Kichijoji Market
Saturday, August 18 and Sunday, August 19
A terrific two days of seasonal vegetables, fruits, homemade treats, and even some fun activities for those whipper-snappers!
10am to 5pm

Every Saturday and Sunday in August
A massive weekend affair that is great fun and features a variety of fruits and vegetables and prepared products from all over Japan. Plus, the curry I had during my last visit from one of the vendors was plate-licking good. (I refrained, but only just.)
10am to 4pm

Every Saturday in August
A first visit to this market was well worth the trek for the number of organic growers and getting to meet a Tokyo farmer from just down the tracks in Kokobunji!
10am to 2pm

Every Saturday and Sunday in August
Another nice market not far from the sumo stadium in Ryogoku it's worth casing out for the neighborhood as well as the vendors.
11am to 5pm

Yurakucho Farmer's Market
Every Saturday and Sunday in August
Another great market somewhere in size between Kichijoji and the United Nation's University Farmer's Market, it often features from a particular growing region as well as heaps of farmers and producers from nearby Chiba and Saitama, too.
11am to 5pm
Directions: Turn left out of the station and cross the courtyard toward Tokyo Kouku Keitan. Look for the fun under the overhang!

Know of a market? Give me a shout and we'll add it to the list!


Anonymous said...

This is so cool! Thanks for putting this list together. ^_^

My sister and I are planning on living in Tokyo for a while and we love Farmer's markets! I wasn't sure that Tokyo had any. Now I know there are a bunch we need to check out!

I was wondering... do you know of any beekeepers in Tokyo that sell honey? I saw one on a Japanese variety show, but I can't remember where it was now...


Joan Lambert Bailey said...

You are most welcome! And I should start by apologizing for the late response. We've just returned from a two-week bike tour in Hokkaido, and I'm only now catching up.

There are folks here in Tokyo keeping bees, both in the heart of the city (Ginza rooftop bees, for example) and in the burbs (along the Tamagawajousui). I suggest trolling the farmers markets to see what you will find for others. Ginza's is good and nifty, but pricey.

Also, I'm planning an outing to the September Earth Day Market. If you'll be here and are interested, feel free to come along!