Nov 5, 2019
Niigata is an unlikely destination even for many seasoned Japan visitors, many thought of it as a snowy rice growing region, and recently, some also beginning to regard it as an art capital. But unknown to many, Niigata is also well known for their metal kitchenware. Chances are, if you are looking at any Japan made premium metallic kitchenware, it's likely made in Niigata's Tsubame Sanjo.
During the Edo era, Tsubame Sanjo are two neighbouring regions famous for making steel nails. As time goes on, the demand for nails gradually subsided, and craftsmen began fabricating steel farming tools. Today, apart from farming tools, the craftsmen are also making steel kitchenware to cater for mass market demand. These days, their products are not necessary constraint to steel, some are even using titanium. Notably, Japan workmanship, along with premium quality, the end result usually is synonymous to expensive products. But if you are lucky, maybe you can find massively discounted products at Stock Busters in Tsubame city, Niigata, though in truth, not all of their items will be offered at discounted prices.
It is recommended to self-drive, but if you are taking public transport, the nearest train station is Tsubamesanjo along the JR Yahiko line and Joetsu Shinkansen, from where you can take Echigo Kotsu local bus (東三条駅前・燕駅前＝分水駅前＝渡部＝寺泊 線), and alight at 小池下口, follow by a 1.8km walk northward. Take note of the bus schedule, as the frequency can be far and few. Alternatively, if you walk from Ao-Uzu station along the JR Echigo line, it will be 3.1km eastward.
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