To start with, Houmeishu (Sake) is a local specialty of Tomonoura. Tomonoura is the birth place of this mulled sake. In addition, this sake is the original of Yomeishu. Besides that, there are marine goods or original gifts. The galley will fulfill travelers' excitement.
Kichibei Nakamura who was a Chinese medicine doctor in Osaka had flood damage in 1653, and after that incident, he moved to Tomonotsu where his friend lived. And in 1659, he produced "Houmei Liquor" in Tomonotsu. Currently, there are four Sake breweries includes brewing and manufacturing of Houmei Liquor where handed down from Nakamura family. And "Houmei Liquor store" is one of those four. The pleasant store is renovated the part of Ota Family house, and for sure, the owner's warm smile will make you step in to the store.
This store is also handed down the Nakamura Family tradition. The store is one of four Houmei Liquor store in Tomonotsu. Inside of the original store is gorgeous, so it will make you exhilarating. This store is active in the area of new product development therefore; you will find a variety of product line-up. The original store also displays Houmei liquor bottles. Those liquor bottles are artistic potteries of Iwataniyaki, Bizenyaki or local pottery called Tomoyaki. These displayed potteries are very colorful, so you will sure to enjoy viewing. In addition, there is another shop located near the dock.
Houmei Liquor is the Nakamura Family exclusive in Edo period. "Mitsuboshi" is the one which handed down its traditional and technique. After Meiji era, when Kametaro Okamoto handed over his family liquor business, he had started Houmei brewing and selling business. Since then, crafts workers who are following traditional sake-making techniques producing Houmei liquor. A stately entrance of Original store uses relocating of Fukuyama Castle's Nagaya gate. This entrance is designated as Tomonoura city cultural asset.
"Aka Taru" is another Houmei Sake Brewing company. Aka Taru focus on "Houmei for health", and their way of producing Houmei liquor is traditional way, and to avoid mass production. "Aka Taru Houmei Liquor" is appeared on not only "Ei Mook 2125" by Ei publication but also other health-related magazines. Especially, a health magazine called "Nikkei Health" featured "Stop Drinking", and in the magazine introduced some famous liquor brand such as Yomei liquor or Jyuntoku liquor but also introduced "Aka Taru real Houmei liquor". "Aka Taru Homei liquor" completely sticking to "Health", it is much recommended!
"Sawamura Marine Shop" has 300 years of history. This well-established marine shop has pleasant atmosphere. The shop stands on Main Street of Tomonoura just as you watch the people walk by. Bengal red paint grate, grid or post feature make your heart warming. Bucho (*is shutters. To hold it up for open) shutter is widely open, and "Sawamura big mama" calls to the villagers and travelers gently. If you talk to Sawamura big mama and papa, you will sure like Tomo more.
Clay tile roofing and white plaster wall – "AMO Chinmi Taisho no Sato" give impression of Hamazo mansion in Edo period. You are able to recognize the store from the opposite shore of Tomo. The store also deploys branches in Fukuyama station and Hiroshima airport. AMO is very popular delicacies. If you are live in Hiroshima, you have heard the famous TVC; "A-MO-Chin-Mi" with cheerful voice by the villagers at least. If you have a chance to visit Fukuyama-city, try the proud dishes of "AMO Chinmi" delicacies. The flavor of sea will fulfill in your mouth.
Speaking of gifts from Tomo, you are not able to left "UOHISA"; the well-established fish paste store; established in 1897 out. From the day of establishment, "UOHISA" keep continue with "Taste of Tomonoura", and is continue offering safety local fresh fish products. Tomonoura's specialty such as fish sausages or fish paste in vegetable Tempura (Called "Gasu Ten") is all handmade by professionals. Those their efforts are the key of their success and are beloved by loco people. The south side of UOHISA original store, there is "Tai Craft Center"; the direct retail store. You will sure enjoy shopping from extensive line-up.
"Shunsen Market Place Tai Craft Center" is representative of Tomo town, Fukuyama city. This fresh fish market is run by "Uohisa". "Uohisa" has high traffic not only from Hiroshima but also from other areas and is very popular place. 300 square meters sales floor also provides food court area, and you will enjoy a taste of Tomonoura. In addition to "fish sausage", "Gasuten" (another type of fish sausage) or "Dried overnight of Tai fish", "Uohisa" is also producing other local makers' products. When the groups of people visit here, the place has become so busy. The market is also offering outdoor fresh market.
Go straight on Route 22 from Fukuyama station, there is "Tomonoura Tourism Information Center". If you are the first time visitor of Tomonoura, we highly recommend you to visit here. There is a lot of information, and also you are able to get maps and brochures which will help during your stay. In addition, there is a parking facility, therefore, convenience to stop-by. Moreover, there is an exhibit space to introduce Tomonoura's history. You are able to learn about Tomo easily. This is a reliable place.
The right next to "Sensui-an", there is a "Tofu factory" where produce specialty Tofu every day with a passion such as seek enjoyment of food through TOFU. A sign "Soy bean laboratory" is not just for show, it seeks Tofu's possibilities. The factory only uses Fukutaka, the soy bean from Kyushu. Its taste is rich. In the factory, you will see Tofu and other Tofu products, and all looks good for health. In addition, you will be enjoying reading the owner's comments on each item. Each comment tells a lot about the owner's character.
Ken chan's Iriko-ya will bring rich food from the sea of Tomonoura; the waiting port. They mainly sell small dried fish products of Setouchi Sea. "Ken-chan" is the name of the owner. "Ken-chan" has learned how to catch sardine and how to make dried sardine in Hashirijima; the offshore of Tomo. In 1999, he has started "Ken-chan's Irikoya". In addition, he seeks additive-free, color-free and non-chlorinated of loco sea products. Ken-chan's Irikoya is much-loved by not only loco people but also visitors.
Spring 2012, a sophisticated gallery shop called "Gallery shop Masuya" has opened. The shop utilized old "Masuya Kiyouemon" house that was doing boats and ships warehouse business. 145 years from now, Ryoma Sakamoto was staying this historical town for hide himself. And now, this historical town added modern sensibility to create a "new Japanese-style". Mr. Jun Sato; the CEO of Nokiro Art Network from Fukushima-city; was opened this gallery. He sees Tomonoura is as one of centers of manufacturing and is producing "happy encounter" between people, shops and creators.
The shop was originally built in 1917. The shop is almost 100 years old. In 2011, the old house was reborn as a galley and cafe place named "Tomonotsu Gallery Arisorow". During Edo period, the place around here was "one of largest licensed red-light district" and the place is used to be called "Ariso". About 50 years from now, the place was in fact doing licensed red-light business, and today, its architecture hidden charms remains strong. The gallery and café is a recommended place to enjoy bygone days of mood.
A crossing is hard to see in Tomo town. "Studio Cross Road" is located at the crossing. In the shop, you'll find humorous but nuanced ceramic products. Most of works are humorous and are used in the motif of cats. You'll surely be pleased and happy. All works in the gallery are made by Mr. Housaku Matsuoka, the owner. His simple but a warm character reflects to his works. In addition, you will see a kiln in the shop. Therefore, the atmosphere in this gallery is just as a craft center. For sure, you'll find your favorite in here.
Naruto-do is the only place for a Japanese-style confection shop in Tomonoura. The appearance of the store is modesty and long-forgotten, so people would like to enter the door. However, the shop is well-established. It has over one hundred years of history. A cute grandma is sitting outside of the store for always, and is welcoming with a warm smile. The name "Naruto-do" is originally came from the owner before last accumulated his knowledge and skills in Naruto, Tokushima. The place is much-loved by loco people. Give it a try for the taste of Tomo.