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Good Japanese/Asian Store in Berkeley, San Jose or Santa Clara?

FishTales Apr 5, 2012 05:52 PM

We'll be looking for a good Asian store when we visit your fine state in a few weeks. We won't be to that much of the Bay area, but will be briefly in Berkeley, San Jose & Santa Clara.

Specifically we broke one of our little dishes for soy sauce for sushi &, not too surprisingly, can't find any good ones here in the desert southwest. Any ideas?


  1. b
    Bunson Apr 10, 2012 09:34 AM

    +1 to Daiso - very affordable where you can buy a stack they're so cheap. Just be sure to check the back and make sure the sticker says Made in Japan instead of Made in China.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Bunson
      FishTales Apr 10, 2012 05:35 PM

      The Union City Daiso is just close enough to 880 that we may be able to fit it in, thanks.


    2. Scrapironchef Apr 8, 2012 05:41 PM

      Daiso in Union City might be worth a stop if you are diving from Berkeley to SJC. The store is huge and has quite an assortment of dishes and cookware. Most items are $1.50,

      There are also a dozen restos worth eating at in the center.

      1785 Decoto Road Union City, CA 94587
      (510) 477-9441

      Ichiban Kan is a Japanese store just up San Pablo Ave from Tokyo Fish Market and also has a lot of dishware in a "Yen Store" format.

      10562 San Pablo Ave
      El Cerrito, CA 94530
      (510) 528-5210

      4 Replies
      1. re: Scrapironchef
        shanghaikid Apr 8, 2012 07:57 PM

        daiso is in almost every city now. already mentioned their berkeley and san jose stores already.

        1. re: shanghaikid
          Scrapironchef Apr 9, 2012 12:56 PM

          The Berkeley one is smaller and more difficult to park at than the UC one, I haven't been to the Saratoga location.

          Just trying to offer more options, sorry if I stepped on your toes.

          1. re: Scrapironchef
            shanghaikid Apr 9, 2012 07:58 PM

            never mind my toes, i was addressing the request re the original specs: san jose, santa clara, berkeley.

            1. re: shanghaikid
              Scrapironchef Apr 9, 2012 10:18 PM

              I'm sorry for thinking that the UC one was between those places, I'm sure the OP wasn't looking any other altermnatives.

      2. anyhow Apr 7, 2012 08:45 AM

        San Jose Japantown has a half dozen gifts / arts / housewares shops + many small restaurants for a wide range of Japanese food styles. 10 minute drive from SJC and loads of parking (unless you go on a festival day). Very informative historical markers make the community accessible to visitors.

        1 Reply
        1. re: anyhow
          FishTales Apr 7, 2012 09:53 AM

          Thank you, yes, just found out about Japantown yesterday when looking at the Saratoga Avenue recommendations above. Looks really good & it's now on the itinerary.


        2. b
          Bigshadetree Apr 7, 2012 07:14 AM

          It sounds like your time will be limited and since you will be in Berkeley, another vote for Tokyo Fish - the gift shop located in the smaller building in front of the market has a lot of Japanese dishes, bento bako's etc. It is very easy to find - on San Pablo a block north of Gilman which is one of the main streets leading back to Interstate 80. Also check out the market - they have a prepared food section - very good bento lunches for $7.25 - cook is Ken-san, the original owner/chef of Yokohama restaurant in Richmond. I believe the sushi they sell is made on site by Mifune restaurant.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Bigshadetree
            drewskiSF Apr 8, 2012 04:45 PM

            the sushi at Tokyo Fish is made by Musashi on Dwight in Berkeley.

            they re-started their lunch service last week. they'd previously stopped it saying they couldn't handle both that and the prep for Tokyo Fish.

          2. s
            shanghaikid Apr 5, 2012 07:20 PM

            -tokyo fish gift shop, 1220 san pablo ave. berkeley,, high end
            -daiso, 2309 telegraph, (near u.c. berkeley) low end $1.5 specialist

            san jose
            -daiso, 651 saratoga ave
            -mistsuwa marketplace, 675 saratoga,, everything japanese here.

            8 Replies
            1. re: shanghaikid
              FishTales Apr 5, 2012 08:20 PM

              Most amazing, within hours there are 6+ possibilities. Many thanks...


              1. re: shanghaikid
                Stephanie Wong Apr 6, 2012 09:56 AM

                If you go to Tokyo Fish's gift shop, they have an adjoining parking lot with an entrance on 10th street:


                I love giving their dishware as gifts. . . lots of bang for my buck.

                1. re: Stephanie Wong
                  Robert Lauriston Apr 6, 2012 11:10 AM

                  Which parking lot? I never knew there was any parking besides what surrounds the gift shop.

                  1. re: Robert Lauriston
                    wolfe Apr 6, 2012 03:19 PM

                    Click on New Parking Available link.

                    1. re: wolfe
                      Glencora Apr 6, 2012 03:42 PM

                      Never would have noticed it.

                      The vegetable plants have arrived.

                    2. re: Robert Lauriston
                      Stephanie Wong Apr 6, 2012 05:43 PM

                      It's the defunct bingo parlor & donut shop lot just on the other side of the former automotive service shop. . . parking's much easier and more civilized now!

                  2. re: shanghaikid
                    Robert Lauriston Apr 6, 2012 11:09 AM

                    Second on Mitsuwa. Worth the drive from SF if you're into Japanese stuff. Tokyo Fish is great but much smaller, though they'd probably have a good selection of what you're looking for.

                    Soko Hardware, SF.

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                      FishTales Apr 6, 2012 04:27 PM

                      We're flying into & out of SJC so that's not out of the way at all. Thanks.


                  3. wolfe Apr 5, 2012 06:02 PM


                    1. g
                      goldangl95 Apr 5, 2012 05:59 PM

                      There are Nijiyas all over the Bay Area. You could try there?

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