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Can't miss the giant melon!
Price: 3800 yen
I had ridden past the Melon Dome on my bike before, thoroughly entertained, but it was already closed for the day. Near Kamitsu and Tsubuku Bypasses in Kurume, the Melon Dome was just a yao-ya, but with a fun Melon-Dome, or so I thought.
I had the chance to go inside (unfortunately after eating too much, there were free samples!) recently, and there are more options than ... melon.
The first thing that caught my eye was dried strawberries, yum! There were also prepared fruits like frozen mango, in addition to fresh fruits and veggies. Local mentaiko was also one of the options, as well as rice, beans, flowers, etc. There are selections of our local teas (Yame-cha) and alcohol also, but hey, have you ever seen Melon Wine!? Neither had we. And they had free samples. I am not a melon flavor fan at all, but the melon wine was refreshing and light, with a candy-like melon flavor. Unique if nothing else. Wouldn't want a glass to myself, but it was interesting to try for sure.
As we had planned to visit family and friends in the states soon, my husband wanted to get the melon wine (1500 yen a bottle) as a weird souvenir from our little part of Japan, and also got a couple packs of the dried strawberries (400 yen each).
In theory, it's just a little fruit shop with local products, but there are some interesting things to choose from, especially if you're looking for local souvenirs.