From tiger-shaped prawns to instant ramen on tap, these delicious delights will make your mouth water!

One of the great things about dining out in Japan is the chance to see what you’re eating before it’s served to you, in the form of plastic food samples often displayed at the front of the restaurant.

The company that first introduced Japan to the wonders of the plastic food sample is Iwasaki, and they’re currently the country’s largest producer of the samples. They first began making them in 1932, and now, to celebrate their 90th anniversary, Iwasaki is holding a special exhibition featuring 60 of their most impressive and creative designs.

Called the Oishisa Art Exhibition 2022 in Tokyo Solamachi, the exhibition is also being run as a contest, with different works competing for the number one spot through a special voting system.

Which one will get your vote? Well, let’s take a look at some of the amazing samples below!

▼ There are cocktails so real you’d be forgiven for trying to sip one.

▼ There are sushi rolls wrapped in artfully cut nori…

▼ …a giant block of maguro tuna…

▼ …and…a Napolitan Lantern?

There’s a lot of humour to be found amongst the displays, with a corn roasting in the sun…

▼ …a couple of eggs encouraging you to eat your fruit and veggies…

▼…”cucumber being watched by a cucumber”…

▼…and a caped duck character conquering…a duck?

We do like our tiger prawns fried in tempura batter, but this is our first time seeing a tempura prawn shaped like a tiger.

One of the most creative displays shows us what it might be like to have instant noodles on tap…literally.

▼ For sweet-toothed visitors, there are fanciful cakes we wish we could bite right into…

▼ …and pancakes that look good enough to eat!

There’s also a “Manufacturing Factory Reproduction Corner” where visitors can take pictures of the production process…

▼ …and a photo corner where you can take weird photos to your heart’s content.

The “Oishisa no Art Exhibition” is held in Tokyo every summer, but this year it’s said to be bigger and better than ever, due to the 90th anniversary celebrations.

It’s a great way to learn about Japan’s dining culture, and the country’s many regional specialties.

The exhibition will be on at Solamachi at Tokyo Skytree until 31 August, and you can vote for your favourites online, but be warned — it’ll make you hungry!

Exhibition Information

Oishisa no Art Exhibition 2022 / おいしさのアート展2022
Address: Tokyo Solamachi in Tokyo Skytree Town (Sumida-ku, Tokyo) East Yard 4th Floor, No. 12 Special Venue
東京スカイツリータウン内 東京ソラマチ(東京都墨田区)イーストヤード4階12番地 特設会場
Hours: 10:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m. (Closes at 6:00 p.m. on the last day)

Images:  Iwasaki
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