Kitchen CHESTS

JAPANESE ANTIQUE kitchen chests

Kitchen cupboard. Mizuya actually means “place of cold water” and the derivation of the term is from the “kitchen“ space in a traditional teahouse where utensils were cleaned

Mizuya became the colloquial expression of kitchen tansu. Sometimes see the terms todana or daidokoro todana literally “kitchen cupboard” used for these tansu as well. Such cupboards held ceramics, lacquer wares, utensils for dining, and even cookbooks. The Edo period saw not just an evolution in cabinetry but in cooking as well.

Urban markets saw a greater variety of foods, oven design evolved, there was a growth in restaurants, and the first published cookbooks became available. Kitchen cupboards were thus needed and became a regional specialty especially in towns surrounding Lake Biwa. They were generally made from two stacking sections and can be three, four, six and even 9 feet wide. Frame and panel construction was common for these larger chests with prized woods such as keyaki or persimmon incorporated into the door panel and drawer faces in some regional styles.