$500 Grapes

The other day I was in Ginza Mitsukoshi which is the equivalent to Barney’s or Harrod’s in Japan to pick up some fruit to bring to Takahashi-san (my favorite sushi chef) and his staff. (I bring presents every time I dine there.) I got them three perfect peaches — which cost $50 but that’s another entry — from this famous fruit store inside Mitsukoshi. In the far corner, I noticed a windowed room with spotlights like in a wine or designer store, where all the special super duper expensive items are tucked away.

I walked into the glassroom out of curiosity and what the hell.


That above are grapes. A single bunch of grapes. In wooden boxes. That cost between $3-500 USD. FOR A SINGLE BUNCH OF GRAPES. I mean. I like grapes but not enough to pay a sushi dinner’s worth…

So of course, I had to ask a fellow working there: “Have you ever tried the $500 grapes?

Him: “Yes, I have.

Me: “YOU HAVE?! 😳  What do they taste like…?

Him (matter of factly): “Exactly like the hundred dollar grapes outside of the glass room!

Me: “Oh. Okay. Thank you.” …in my head, I was wondering who in the F buys $100 grapes?! but instead, asked”do people actually buy $500 grapes…?”

Him (again, matter of factly) “No.”

And we both had a laugh. Japan is so ridiculous on all sorts of levels but $500 for a single bunch of grapes is just out of control. Part of me wants to work in that fruit shop just to see if I can sell $500 grapes to gaudy new-money tourists who swarm Japan as of late 😉

Japan endlessly entertains and delights. If you’re ever in Tokyo and feel like having a huge laugh, check out the silly fruit corners in high-end department stores. I don’t think there is anything like it elsewhere.

Here are the $500 grapes.



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