1983. The Omosako Koi farm – Hiroshima.
The next day Hideo took me on the long journey from Mihara to Kure town to this outlet.
On this first visit the main premises were on the main street in Kure and were then run by the father of Takashi Omosako.
Takashi has since become much more famous in his production of Shiro Utsuri and the main farm is now based at his home a few miles distant.
I found a wide range of varieties and sizes there and purchased several including a particularly memorable large Asagi. I dealt only with the friendly father that day.
On my next visit I found, and purchased one of the most unusual Koi I have ever seen. It was a female Koi around 18″ long and resembled a perfect sandan Kohaku in pattern, however the red pigmentation had been replaced by large areas of ‘jet-black’ instead and the edges to each pattern were clean and extremely well finished. I asked Omosako San as to the ‘variety’ of this Koi and had already expected my answer which simply was ‘Kawarimono’!
I, instead named her as my ‘Sumi Kohaku’!
The Koi lasted for sale back home for around 15 minutes after Ian Stewardson immediately snapped her up and took her away! I have never seen another Koi even vaguely resembling this since then.
It was not until later visits that I met Takashi who told me he would soon specialise in production of Shiro Utsuri from Oyagoi he had purchased from Hiroji Sakai.
My first impressions there were ‘friendly and traditional’ – an outlet to re-visit.