Kanazawa is blessed with a variety of ingredients: rice, local Kaga vegetables, clean water from the Hakusan Mountain, fish and shellfish from the nearby sea and of course the soy sauce produced in the Ono area. The Maeda lords who ruled over the Kaga domain which covers the Ishikawa and Toyama area promoted advanced cooking techniques. Kutani porcelain and lacquer ware raised the value of local cuisine and its culture. There are high-class Japanese restaurants with beautiful Japanese-style rooms with views over Japanese gardens. “Jibuni” is an example of a traditional Kaga dish: a boiled seasoned duck coated with wheat, gluten and vegetables in a thick soup.
Fish and shellfish from the nearby sea are particularly delicious in winter. Crab harvesting in the Ishikawa prefecture starts on November 6. In winter crimson crabs can be found at the stores of the Omi-cho market. The locals call male snow crabs "zuwai-gani" and the twice as small female crab "kobako-gani."
Late November, during the period famous for its snow-thunders, matured yellowtails are sold in the market. The “buri daikon”, boiled yellowtail boiled with Japanese radish is local delicacy. “Kabura-zushi” is one of Kanazawa’s most famous dishes: a sweet sushi dish rich in taste made from roundly-cut turnip pickled in salt. The fish used in this sushi is the yellowtail.
Many sushi restaurants and conveyor belt sushi restaurants can be found in Kanazawa, as a result of the big variety of fish and shellfish that can be found in the region. The sushi from Kanazawa is highly evaluated in Japan.
Kaga vegetables are indispensable to the local cuisine. There are 15 kinds of Kaga vegetables. These vegetables were introduced prior to 1945. The spinach-like vegetable called "kinjiso" and the red Japanese pumpkin are very unique to Kanazawa. These vegetables with high nutritional values are commonly used by local households.
Kanazawa, Kyoto, and Matsue are called the three greatest Japanese places for confectionery making. In the Edo period (1603 to 1867) the Maeda family encouraged the tea ceremony. Japanese confectionery is indispensable to the tea ceremony. Japanese sweets are reflections from seasonal nature elements made from raw materials with great skill. Rice, red beans and sugar are common ingredients. Special confectionery is made on occasions such as New Year and weddings. A wide variety of colourful sweets and even a store that has been in business for over 380 years are present in Kanazawa. Some sweets are made with Western materials and techniques. There are facilities where tourists can experience Japanese confectionery making.
High-quality sake has been produced with rice from the Kaga Plains and water from the Saigawa and Asanogawa River during winter for over 400 years. The local sake contains about 15% alcohol. There are four brewing companies in Kanazawa, all of which have been in operation for more than 100 years. Kanazawa's sake rich taste goes well with the local cuisine.