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Gyomu Super or “GS” is a retail wing and trademark of Kobe Bussan Corporation, a wholesaler company with license to procure, provide, prepare, import, and export commercial food in bulk. “Gyomu” in Japanese means “wholesale for professionals”, and “Super” is short for “supermarket.” Commercial food is designed and sold specifically for use by retailers such as restaurants, izakaya, coffee houses, and food preparation companies, therefore the price per unit quantity is relatively inexpensive.
When they first started out in 2000, Gyomu Super only offered its wholesale products to commercial food industries. Before long however, they began to design their stores with the general public in mind, and opened their doors to smaller business and retail customers. Since then the chain has expanded to over 700 locations across Japan, from Hokkaido to Okinawa. In addition to their own brands, Gyomu Super has a vast selection of imported goods from countries around the world such as Italy, Indonesia, Turkey, Lithuania, and many more. Their imports often boast Halal certification, Fair Trade Agreement, and eco-friendly packaging.
Gyomu Super is not a co-op so there are no membership fees. Anyone can walk in off of the street and start shopping. After paying full-price at local supermarkets for years, the low prices can come as quite a shock for first-time shoppers. Let’s put it this way, with the money you save, you’ll be able to do things like dine out more frequently at one of the many fine eating establishments in Osaka.
I am going to introduce a few choice items you can find at Gyomu Super. Please keep in mind I am not a professional shopper, a corporate shill, nor any type of social media “influencer” after free perks. I am simply a regular Joe from California who has been shopping for bargains in Osaka for over 20 years. Whether you are a visitor to Osaka or a long-term resident, I truly hope you find some of these tips to be both fun and useful.
Item! Quattro Formaggi Frozen Pizza
Product Name: Mama Mia Quattro Formaggi
Japanese Name: クアトロフォルマッジ
Country of Origin: Italy
Price: ¥408 (tax included)
Certification: N/A. For Halal, buy these pizzas instead.
My Italian-Canadian friend gave me a tip six months ago about a very good frozen pizza at Gyomu Super. My friend and I both have a history of turning our noses up at what he calls, “pizza surgelata,” which means “frozen pizza” in Italian. I cannot recall a time ever of my own will, where I purchased pizza from the frozen section of any store, anywhere—rolling out my own pizza has long been old hat. However, at my pal’s insistence, I relented and picked up two boxes of Mama Mia Quattro Formaggi. Now a happy convert, I give this Italian import four thumbs up! Multiple trips since, I have become a faithful customer and my house now possesses that warm, old-time smell of Grandma’s kitchen.
What does this pre-made “cardboard-style” pizza have that all others lack? Maestro, drum-roll please? Blue cheese! The other cheeses are not too shabby either: edamer, mozzarella, and provola. This makes for a very tasty four-cheese meal for the family, or a quick, hot snack for the slice connoisseur!
But wait! This is Gyomu Super right? Why stop there? Why not top the pie up with some “upgrades” found a few aisles on either side of the pizza freezer?
The vegetable section has plenty of late season red onions and yellow onions—a must! There is also a nice selection of different types of green peppers (¥129). I recommend thin sliced shishito or the longer yellow-green wax peppers found around this season. Dig mushrooms? GS has various mushrooms such as nameko, shiitake, and erengi (around ¥100 a pack).
Red and yellow paprika are often on sale! If not, try a bag of frozen paprika cutlets for under three hundred yen! Later at home, allow them to thaw in a strainer, pat dry, toss in olive oil, set aside.
Let’s all swing on over to the sauces aisle next for the real star of the show. Although this pie sports four heavenly cheeses, its quite low on sauce. There is a very indiscreet, bottom-shelved pizza sauce called simply, ”Pizza Sauce” (ピザソース). A big-sized 700g jar sells for only ¥238, including tax. Most won’t know until further inspection that this is a sun-dried tomato paste with lots of fennel and oregano. Miss Grandma’s cooking yet?
Last but not least, we have one of the many bargains we are seeing in GS, despite many months of rampant inflation: fresh mozzarella cheese from Hidaka Milk Company in Hokkaido (北海道日高モッツァレラ). This 100g size (3.5oz) would actually be sold as ovoline mozzarella overseas. They have a soft, spongy texture and are packaged in either whey or saltwater. A robust ball, lightly salted, chewy, satiating—you can’t resist! Listen folks, at ¥248 per 100g pack, this is an incredible deal!
Yes! RUN, DON’T WALK! Pick up a couple packs of these beauties, slice them thickly, place them precisely, and you’ve got yourself a fantastic upgrade on an already fabulous pizza! And to paraphrase the famous song performed at karaoke bars all over Japan: YOU did it …Your WAAAAY!
Gyomu Frozen Pizza Upgrade Hack: Save Dough with this Cheesy Sauced-Up Dough
Makes one medium-sized pizza.
Quattro Formaggi Frozen Pizza
Gyomu Super brand Pizza Sauce (8-10oz or 5-6 tbsp per pie)
Red paprika (1), green paprika (1), yellow paprika (1)
Red onion (1)
One pack of enoki mushrooms (100g)
One pack of fresh mozzarella cheese (100g each)
Shredded cheese (1/2cup)
Olive oil (1 tbsp)
Remove the seeds from the peppers. Flatten each pepper on the cutting board and cut them into long thin strips. Slice the onion and mushrooms. In a colander or bowl, toss the vegetables with a splash of olive oil and and a little salt and pepper. Set aside.
Depending on your preference, add 3-5 tbsp of the pizza sauce using a ladle or large serving spoon. (Be careful not to add too much sauce because it will overpower the four cheeses!). Spread the sauce evenly using a spiral motion.
Sprinkle shredded mozzarella along the outside first and work your way to the center. Don’t add too much—less is best! (Remember, you already have four types of cheese underneath). Add the vegetables and slices of mozzarella cheese.
Bake the pizza in a conventional or toaster oven at 200c degrees. Depending on the kind oven you use, this could take anywhere from 15- 30 minutes. When done, add an extra 5-10 minutes to brown—for some, the crispier the crust, the better!
Tip: After the first 10 minutes, check on your pizza every few minutes to make sure it doesn’t burn!
Readers, I would love to see pictures of YOUR upgrade hacks for this frozen pizza from Gyomu Super. Send photos of your pizzas to email@example.com or post your recipes in the comments section. We’ll post selected entries on the Osaka.com Facebook page.
Item! Wrappers Delight: Gyomu Super Extra Long Kitchen Wrap
Let’s be frank. We all have a love/hate relationship with plastic wrap, no matter what brand. Unless you or your folks spent the extra money to buy the heaven-sent premium plastic, you know the routine first hand! In these days where plastic waste is rampant, you are better off expending the least amount possible. Why wrestle with your wrap? This is serious business, preservation of our very foods in mind!
Why not run down to your local GS and purchase a roll of 30x 100 meters in its durable and sexy red, green, and white box and feel secure in your kitchen today? A scant ¥218 and its all yours. Let me tell you about a little known hack it took me at least thirty five years to come upon. The “push-in holes” on left and right are there to hold the roll steady. Half of our heartache in ripping a sheet to shreds was not knowing this hack. Push them in and cut the sheet effortlessly. The durable box makes it easier, and GS brand has made this affordable product simply heaven.
You might think it is strange for somebody to rave about such a common household item, but I am not alone in my love for this product. One of our jobs here at Osaka.com is to examine lesser-known trends in Japan (no matter how obscure) before the rest of the world finds out. I can report that this kitchen wrap has a cult following in Japan, especially among bloggers and YouTubers. Need proof? Take a look at the video below by a Gyomu Super fan named Shino.
Item! Ciao Italia Frollini Biscuits
Product Name: Traditional Frollini Italian Biscuits
Country of Origin: Italy
Certification: Halal, Kosher
Brand: Ciao Italiana Master Bakers
Gyomu Super is once again importing Frollini biscuits from Italy. The supply chain of these delicious biscuits came to an uncertain halt during the pandemic, but they have slowly trickled back in.
You can choose from three flavors: honey, cranberry and sesame, and hazelnuts and cocoa. The cranberry and sesame is the best of the three and really stands out with its crunchy biscotti punch and lingering bitter-sweet taste
Frollini biscuits make the perfect quick snack over a frothy mug of hot chocolate and coffee, so they are bound to be a favorite in the upcoming winter months. Enjoy them at the office, on the hiking trail, or at home in front of one of Japan’s ubiquitous space heaters.
Prices in Japan have risen sharply in recent months. These Frollini Biscuits were only ¥95 yen for the longest time, but the price was raised to ¥138 in June. Despite the price increase, these imported biscuits are still a real bargain for discerning shoppers.