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Do As Tokyo Does Plastic Food
(Entered Sep. 27, 2006)
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Most people will agree that Japan is ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to technology, but perhaps a lesser known fact is that Japan also excels when it comes to making plastic models of food. These days any restaurant worth it's salt will have it's whole menu carefully crafted in plastic, displayed in a special window for your viewing pleasure. And with the technology of making fake food being so advanced now, you'd be forgiven for trying to eat or drink some of the creations if a waiter happened to place them in front of you. Each noodle in plates of spagetti seem to have been crafted seperately, grease on steaks glistens like it was just fried, and mugs of beer have tiny beads of condensation covering them. Below you can see a bowl of chinese style tofu and noodles ready to be eaten. It's not real!? Looks good though. Dig the tiny pieces of meat and sliced chili peppers!

plastic food

So where does all this plastic art come from? Well if you're opening a restaurant, cafe or bar in Tokyo, the place you want to head to first is called 'Kappabashi'. Every shop there is dedicated to the restauranteer. Whether you're looking to buy sushi knives, chairs and tables, signs, menu covers, plates, expresso makers, or of course plastic food, Kappabashi has it all. However, the plastic food is what makes the trip down there worthwhile and is the main reason why the area is so famous. It's too bad, but most of the stuff is wrapped in plastic so it's difficult to give you a good idea of its realism. You'd think that with everything being made of plastic, they'd leave off wrapping it up in yet more plastic, but no, once you get on the plastic bandwagon it's hard to stop, Here we have a bunch of beers each in it's own bag. Much more impressive seen up close though.

plastic food

Here we are in another fake food shop. Kumi models a grilled fish for me while we browsed the fake meat section. We commented on how a starving person would quickly go insane if locked up in a room such as this...quite an unpleasant thought actually if you dwell on it....

plastic food

I'm not holding up those noodles with my chopsticks, they're standing up by themselves. One of the benefits of eating plastic food is that it's not affected by gravity the same way as normal food is. It's a good thing they haven't added smells to all this plastic food or else I really would be in trouble.

plastic food

After looking at so much plastic food, Kumi and I naturally got hungry and went to have lunch in a steak restaurant. Here I am proudly displaying my steak before I dig in. Wait a minute, it's still plastic! Nooo!!!! I'm trapped in plasticland!

plastic food

Plastic sushi was everywhere. This is, after all, Japan. Is plastic food expensive? You better believe it. One piece of sushi ranged from 500-800 yen, ($5.00-8.00). You can only imagine the poor sushi shop owner shelling out big bucks trying to make a nice display of the 50 or so different varieties he serves.

plastic food

The fruit looked especially tasty. Not sure how they make plastic look juicy but there you go! Some of the seeds in the watermelon are white! The attention to detail is sickening really. Japan is famous for expensive fruit, and watermelon is no exception. However real watermelon doesn't have anything on the plastic variety when it comes to price. You don't want to know!

plastic food

Not all plastic food is created equal though. A few old, dingy restaurants still have the same old displays that seemingly haven't been changed or cleaned off since the invention of, well, plastic. Here's a restaurant near my house displaying a very unappealing bowl of something, covered in dust, behind a very dirty pane of glass. Kinda looks like dirty black socks in brown water. The other items weren't any better. Perhaps the owner doesn't want any customers to enter? You surely won't see me in there. Any restaurant that can't take care of it's plastic food obviously can't be trusted to make the real variety, at least that's what I always say.

plastic food



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