Thursday, May 08, 2008

Japanese Cantaloupe

Whether it is Fortnum and Mason (UK), Marshall Fields (Chicago) or Seibu (Tokyo), my favorite thing about old school department stores are the food cellars. I was recently thinking about how the metrics for perfection evolve over time. When you are working at the absolute zenith, the most subtle variations are amplified to separate the perfect from the merely great. The gift cantaloupe standards of the Tokyo department stores have evolved to define quintessentially perfect cantaloupe as a melon with vine tendrils reaching 6 inches from the stem.

A little Googling found Brad Templeton's site, but if anybody else has photos of extreme Japanese gift fruit, please email us! Brad mentions $125 melons, but I know I saw showpiece $600 cantaloupes when I was in Tokyo.