That time I went to Costco in Yokohama, Japan – i.e コストコ横浜
I have been to some unique Costco locations over the past few years. I have been to the busiest Costco in the United States, the largest Costco in the World, and many other unique locations. I had thought I had seen it all, until I made the thirteen-hour flight to Tokyo, Japan where I would visit my first Costco Japan location in Yokohama.
I was staying in central Yokohama, and I took a train ride to the Costco in Yokohama Japan. When I first arrived at the Costco Yokohama location, I was amazed at how large the building was. From the outside of the building you would think that the Yokohama Costco has three levels, which it does, but the second and third levels are just parking. You take an escalator to the second and third floors, and you are going to find ample parking. On the outside of the building, you will also find ample space to park your bike or scooter.
What surprised me the most was the merchandise. As you walk into the warehouse, it is set up exactly like a Costco in the United States. You have the merchandise on the fence on the left, and then major electronics on the right. As you walk around the loop, you pass the home goods on the right, clothing in the center, the water/paper towels in the back right, and then their fresh departments all along the back. As you pass all of the fresh departments, you are going to come along the liquor department, and then pass the cooler/freezers followed by all of their dried foods and snacks.
The majority of the products that you will see are products that you see sold in the United States. Some of the familiar brands are: Kitchen Aid, Grandeur bath towels, Kirkland signature batteries, Ziploc, Jiffy, and many more. If anything, you will be searching for brands that are unique to Japan. If you are a transplant from the United States, Costco will be your favorite store to find all of your U.S favorites.
The Service Deli is set up in a similar way to those in the U.S. While they may have a similar set up, the actual products that they sell are catered towards Japanese cuisine, which is what I would anticipate, since we are in Japan and all. Some unique items that I saw were:
– Korean Chopped Salad
– Roast Beef Salad
– Round Pizza Seafood
– Mexican Salad Wrap
– Ciopping Soup
– Almost Burnt Rotisserie Chicken
They also have three different platters. They have a hye roller/sandwich combo platter, a shrimp cocktail platter, and a seafood chirashi platter. Pricing is very similar to the United States once you do the conversion. The sandwich/roller platter will run you about $32, while the shrimp platter will run you $53.
I didn’t buy anything from the service deli, but everything looked to be of the same high standards that Costco is known for.
Sushi & Seafood
The Costco Japan locations all have a dedicated sushi and seafood department. They roll all of their sushi in house, and they have the largest variety I have ever seen at any Costco. My favorite item was the giant octopus that you could buy. I don’t know how they keep all of the products in stock, because out of all the fresh departments, the sushi/seafood department was the area where every member was going; it was like they were giving the stuff out for free.
Some other unique things that they had were:
– Spicy Pollack Roe
– Seasoned Salmon Caviar
– Dried Mackerel
– Cooked Hair Crab
– Argentina Red Shrimp (They were as big as my hand!)
– Sushi Platters
– Cooked Snow Crab
Their sushi department had 8 employees, just for rolling sushi. I can only imagine how time consuming it must be making all of that sushi…
If you are from the United States, you are going to love the USDA steak they sell in the Meat department; what you aren’t going to like is the prices. They sell both USDA choice and USDA prime steaks. Two medium sized Prime N.Y. steaks are going to run you 4397 yen, which is about $40.
They also have a large selection of Wagyu Steak, ground pork, ground beef, and a ground beef & pork blend. The large meat department coolers held an abundance of boneless chicken breasts, thighs, and wings.
For the most part, you are going to find the same selection of meat that you would find in the U.S, but remember you are going to be paying those premium prices. Trust me though; the price is still worth it for those high quality USDA Prime steaks.
I really wish I wasn’t addicted to sweets. I hadn’t picked up anything to purchase until I got to the bakery. The first thing I laid my eyes on was a giant loaf of Hotel Bread. For those of you that don’t know hotel bread is, it’s basically a loaf of white bread that tastes like it’s been pre-buttered; so I had to pick one of those up to try.
The next thing I saw was a large tray of made from scratch walnut brownies. I have often asked myself why Costco doesn’t sell brownies, and so when I discovered them, I had to have them. If I wasn’t flying out of the country and onto my next adventure, I would have bought even more items to try out, but there is only so much space in my luggage.
The one thing that really stood out was it felt like they didn’t carry as much variety as the bakeries in the United States do. They had all of the staples, like sheet cakes, muffins (packs of 12), bagels, croissants, dinner rolls (they had four racks FILLED with dinner rolls), and cookies. I would say they carried about 20 different items in total.
Some other unique items were:
– Soufflé Cheesecake
– Luxury Mini Croissants
– Multi Grain Dinner Roll (New item to their bakery)
– Mini Pain Au Chocolate (Mini Chocolate Croissants)
– Swiss Roll Cakes
– Variety Sweet Lattice
Everything looked really tasty, and I wanted to try everything. Since I only got to try two items, that just means that I will have to go back to Japan to try the other unique items.
FYI – The brownies and hotel bread were amazing. I ate most of the hotel bread and the brownies on my flight over to Dubai. There’s nothing like being on a 11-hour flight and whipping out your giant loaf of bread and your mega tray of brownies.
I think I ate about 5000 calories at their food court. In the United States, they typically only put a new item into their food court about once every two years. I think the last new item that I tried in the United States was the chili, and before that it was the beef brisket.
When I saw all of the new items, I wanted to try as many as my stomach would allow.
Their menu is as follows:
– Garden Salad
– ¼ Pound Plus Pork Hot Dog
– Acai Smoothie | 20 oz. Soda
– Clam Chowder Soup (New item to their food court)
– Twist Churros
– Chicken Bake | Bulgogi Baker
– Pizza Slice | Whole Pizza
– Hot Coffee | Latte Hot/Ice | Café Mocha Hot
– Pecan Caramel Sundae | Hokkaido Soft Cream
I tried the garden salad, hot dog, acai smoothie, pepperoni pizza, coffee, and a pecan caramel sundae; all of the items were amazing. I really liked that the salad came in a shaker format. The hot dog tasted just like the hot dog from the United States. I tried other pork hot dogs while in Japan, and all of the other hot dogs had a very unique taste, so it was nice to have a hot dog that tasted familiar. I was at the Costco around mid-day, and the line for the food court was 20+ people the entire time I was there; thankfully the line moved quickly and the employees were efficient.
The Costco Yokohama location also has a full service photo, optical, hearing aid, and tire shop departments. They offer all of the same services that we offer here in the United States. The optical department also has an eye doctor for eye testing.
Visiting the Costco Yokohama location was a truly unique shopping experience. As someone who travels all over the world, it is always nice to know that I can stop at a Costco and find most of my favorite foods from the United States. This concluded my Costco Yokohama Japan recap. I tried to include as much interesting information as possible. I have included a full gallery of all the pictures that I took while at the Costco Yokohama Japan location, so you can see everything that I saw. If there is something you are interested in that I didn’t cover in my post, please don’t hesitate to ask. Has there been a Costco location that you visited that had a lot of unique items? Let me know in the comments below.
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