Shizuoka Prefecture has a great variety of famous local products, from food ingredients to processed foods and affordable-yet-tasty budget specialties. This might cause some visitors to feel overwhelmed by all of the excellent choices. But do not fret, for we are here to help with our inside knowledge on all the key gift souvenirs! From the well-established and representative Shizuoka sweets that have been cherished by locals from days of old to the up-and-coming desserts gaining attention in the region, we can tell you what the locals will point to when they say, “If you visit Shizuoka, you’ve got to get this!” We hope you will savor the many delicacies Shizuoka Prefecture has to offer.
〇 Abekawa Mochi
Widely known since the Edo Period (1603 – 1867) as a specialty of the old Tokaido Highway, this is one of Shizuoka’s most famous confections.
〇 Kuro Yakko
This historical confection has its origins in the Meiji Period (1868 – 1912) and was named after the character Oyakko, who appears in the Shimada Taisai Festival, one of the Three Strange Festivals of Japan.
〇 Bari Katsuo-kun
Shizuoka Prefecture is a leading producer of bonito and Katsuobushi dried bonito flakes in Japan. This snack is made by taking thick flakes of Katsuobushi, flavoring them with ginger soy sauce and roasting them to a nice, light finish. Think of them as fish chips.
〇 Sakura Ebi no Mai
As the name suggests, the highly popular Sakura Ebi no Mai are made with sakura shrimp, one of the local products that Shizuoka Prefecture is particularly known for. The second you bite into this crispy snack, the flavor of Sakura shrimp fills your mouth.
Made with pillowy whipped cream that melts in your mouth and a smooth, refined Anko red bean paste enveloped in soft Mochi, this cream Daifuku Mochi is the height of luxury, brought to you by a tea wholesaler from Shizuoka. It is a longtime favorite of young and old, men and women alike.
〇 Unagipie eel pastries
An absolute classic among gift souvenirs from Shizuoka is the crispy and aromatic Unagipie eel pastry. This famous snack is made by blending butter and carefully selected ingredients with eel extract, garlic and other seasonings.
〇 Jiichiro’s Baumkuchen
You can truly feel the dedication of the pastry chefs as you savor your first bite of a Jiichiro Baumkuchen cake, and the rich, elegant sweetness of the egg yolks and butter spreads softly in your mouth.
The various textures and aromas of the raisins, walnuts, and orange peel folded into the dough delight the senses, and you will never get tired of nibbling at these fine, light cookies.
A fluffy and delicious steamed cake made from fresh eggs and subterranean water from the southern Alps, filled with a subtly sweet milk cream.
Shizuoka is home to a wide variety of traditional crafts, such as elegant and graceful Hina dolls and accessories; Maki-e lacquerware; woven and dyed textiles that make the best use of natural textures; and pottery and traditional woodwork such as Sashimono that exhibit a refined beauty while retaining their value as everyday items. All of these items have been made using traditional techniques handed down from generation to generation to the present day.
Master craftsmen were invited from all over Japan for the construction of the Sengen Jinja shrine located next to Tokugawa Ieyasu’s retreat castle of Sumpu Castle. It is said that their excellent techniques became the roots of today’s traditional crafts in Shizuoka City. In addition, with Hamamatsu at its center, the Enshu region has long been famous for its textile production, which has given birth to some excellent traditional crafts.
In the present day, Shizuoka Prefecture has developed strengths in various modern industries such as automobiles, musical instruments, furniture, and precision machinery. What is less well known is that the traditional crafts served as the breeding ground for the development of Shizuoka’s manufacturing strengths today. For example, automobile manufacturing is an important local industry in Shizuoka Prefecture, but it has its roots in the traditional textile industry. Hand looms gave way to automatic looms, and the technology of the automatic looms was then transferred to the automobile industry. Another local industry, furniture manufacturing, is also a legacy of the master craftsmen who built the aforementioned Sengen Jinja shrine. Therefore, the traditional crafts of Shizuoka Prefecture are not only excellent works of art, but also the foundation of Shizuoka’s industry today.
There are several shopping malls in Shizuoka Prefecture, including the Gotemba Outlets, which are very popular among foreign tourists. Shopping malls are very convenient because you can comfortably go shopping no matter what the weather, and if you don’t have much time but need to buy several items, you can find them all in one place. You may want to stop by when the weather is bad, or if you need to shop in a hurry.