If you're ever in Edgewater, New Jersey, chances are you are there for one thing and one thing only: Mitsuwa Marketplace.  As an Asian person living in New York City - with its three distinct Chinatowns (maybe more, depending on how you parse), Koreatown by Herald Square, and even a little Japantown near St. Mark's Place - I find Asian markets to be old hat so I'll be honest, I wasn't thrilled or eager to visit Mitsuwa, a Japanese market across two rivers from my house.  I can go down 86th Street and have two Chinese supermarkets within a block of each other.

Mitsuwa impressed me, though!  It was definitely the cleanest Asian market I've been to.  The aisles are wide and bright, and none of the packaged foods looked dingy or sketchy like some often do in my local markets.  There wasn't an extensive butcher or seafood section, but you can probably find a section for everything else in your Asian dietary needs: tofu, dried fish, snacky-snacks.

The biggest draw about Mitsuwa is actually its food court.  The market, which is ginormous (for lack of better adjective), is lined with different food stalls that hawk fast, affordable Asian food.  A sample of the selection: sushi, ramen, udon, rice with different toppings, hot cakes, and ice cream.

I had a big bowl of udon with a shrimp tempura and rice and a few more goodies.  The food was simple, but very tasty. Okay, so the shrimp tempura was kind of soggy by the time I ate it, and I could have probably found this same meal without having to go to Jersey.  But in that moment, I had to admit that the rice was just sticky enough to have a really nice texture and mouthfeel, and that the deep-fried scallions in the udon broth were yummy nuggets of saltiness.

If I lived in New Jersey, I'd probably find myself at Mitsuwa to address my shopping and eating needs.