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Ginza Natsuno – A Chopstick Superstore!

Did you know that there are over 1400 types of chopsticks and 1,100 different ways to hold them? There are even rules about what you should and shouldn’t do with your chopsticks. The Japanese term for chopsticks is hashi and Ginza Natsuno is a store dedicated to everything beautiful about hashi!

On a visit to the branch in Harajuku I was amazed by the variety of hashi available. The walls were covered with hashi in almost every color of the rainbow and there were sizes and styles that I had never seen before.

When you purchase hashi the correct length is estimated at 1.5 times the distance between your thumb and index fingers when extended. You should also considers the finish, thickness, shape and weight of the hashi when deciding which pair is right for you. Hashi should never be put in the dishwasher or left soaking in water. Just wipe them down with a damp sponge and dry them with a dish towel before storing them. If your chopstick are wooden they will dry out over time but a periodic rub down with rapeseed or olive oil will keep them in good shape.

Ginza Natsuno also sell hashi rests and the variety on display was mind boggling. There were turtles, samurai, fish, castles, and I even spotted a baseball glove with a ball. These little ceramic gems were so adorable that you could start a collection and the uninitiated would never suspect that they were meant to rest your chopsticks on so the table cloth wouldn’t get dirty!

The Harajuku location is actually composed of two stores. The main store holds the hashi and hashi rests and the satellite store (next door) carries dishes, toys and figurines.

What better souvenir is there than one that you can actually use that will bring back fond memories of you trip to Tokyo?

The maps of the Ginza Natsuno locations are in Japanese but I have provided you with the station name and exit number which should make the maps easy to navigate using the Tokyo Transfer Guide. Here are the links to the maps:

Harajuku location, Exit A2 from Omotesando station.

Marunouchi location, 4th floor of the Shin-Marunouchi Building near Tokyo Station.

Ginza locations, Exit B5 from Ginza station.

Photos: Personal Collection