Tomo town (Fukuyama City, Hiroshima Prefecture) is located at the crashing point of waves that come from the east and west! It is, so to speak, the “intersection of the sea”. For more than a 1000 years it flourished as a ‘Shiomachi’ port (a place to wait for favorable tides and weather), but with the development of overland routes, Tomo became a quiet backwater port town…
In October 2013, a new shop called “Tomo Higoya’s Tai Miso” opened in the town.
Located in an Edo period (1603~1867) building constructed about 165 years ago that used to sell a type of liquor called Hōmeishu, it had been vacant for 10 years before “Tomo Higoya” took it over.
With the ultimate aim of restoring this historic shop and rejuvenating Fukuyama, “DISCOVERLINK Setouchi” staff decided to make and sell an original version of a traditional local food (Tai Miso is made by simmering sea bream in miso paste, soy sauce, and mirin).
These are on sale: Tai Miso White (front left), Tai Miso Red (middle), Tai Goma ni/ Sesame (right), Tai Miso Makizushi (far right), Nori Tsukudani (seaweed).
Simply yet elegantly packaged… Perfect souvenir gifts.
“It’s often said that there’s nothing in Fukuyama, but Tomo is a great town with a long history. I want to help boost the local economy to the point where people think, ‘Fukuyama means Tomo, and Tomo means Tai Miso’,” said a Tsujimoto store staff member.
Indeed, if Tomo Higoya’s Tai Miso becomes popular, it will not only help the shop succeed, but also local fishermen, the wrapping factory, and the ribbon makers, etc. Development of the local working environment is also an important goal of Tomo Higoya.
Inside the shop there are many items that represent the area and its history; cushions made with Bingo Kasuri (a traditional woven fabric), a type of sea bream shaped container that has been sold since the Showa era, etc. It’s a lovely location for a spot of traditional culture sightseeing!
Tomo Higoya is on “Tomo Ginza”, the nickname given to the once-bustling main street. With the hope of once again filling the street with people, as in bygone eras, the intention is to begin holding various events to attract as many as possible.
Just as an aside, in another shop in Tomo I overheard some locals talking about wanting the town to flourish, but not wanting weird tourist souvenir shops like they have in some places!
I couldn’t agree more! It would be great if more shops open, like Tomo Higoya, that tastefully maintain tradition.
Address: 595 Tomo, Tomo-chō, Fukuyama-shi, Hiroshima
Open: 10:00 – 17:00
Website (Japanese): http://tomohigoya.com/
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Izumi Furukawa
Izumi Furukawa Hello. My name is Izumi Furukawa and I was born in Kagawa Prefecture. Before getting married in 2012, I wrote for various magazine companies and Internet based media organizations in Tokyo. After marrying, I moved to Hiroshima and am now raising my child as well as writing stories about my fascination with this area through Setouchi Finder. Most of the articles I write are about places I visit on weekends with my family. My favorite driving course is Route 375 from Saijyo to the Miyoshi Area, and my favorite food from the Hiroshima area is Anagomeshi (from Miyajima)!!
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