Japanese Shrine Has a Grave for Sushi Fish

Tokyo shrine has a grave for sushi ingredients
Wikimedia/Japan Sushi

A shrine near Tsukiji Fish Market has a grave for sushi.

A good plate of sushi comes into being thanks to many different people, like the chef who prepared it, the servers who brought it, and whoever paid you the money to allow you to cover the bill at the end of the meal. And some businesses have even decided to express their gratitude to the fish that become sushi by erecting graves for them at a shrine in Tokyo.

Casey Baseel of Rocket News 24 discovered the sushi grave on a recent trip to Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market. At the nearby Namiyoke Inari Shrine, Baseel discovered a large stone monument inscribed with the words, “sushitzuka,“ or “sushi grave,” in honor of the 700,000 metric tons of seafood that travel through the Tsukiji market every year.

But as Baseel points out, not all fish becomes sushi. Some fish become grilled fillets, or wind up in a lovely bouillabaisse. Those fish are also covered by another monument of black polished stone that reads, “grave of fish.”

The monuments are reportedly paid for by merchants, wholesalers, and other people that depend on the seafood trade for their business. In addition to the monument to fish and the grave of sushi, there is also a large grave honoring shrimp, and a smaller one next to it specifically memorializing those shrimp who become shrimp tempura. It's basically possible to pay one's respects to the entire menu at the shrine, because while eggs don't come from the sea or even have faces, there is a large, egg-shaped grave stone for the eggs that are fried into omelettes for egg sushi, just to cover all the bases.

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