Goshiki are koi with a solid white (shiro) base color with black and blue edging, and red (hi) patterns overlaying the white, black and blue colors of the base. Ideally, the black and blue edging of the shiro scales should combine to create a reticulated net pattern. However, the black and blue edging are sometimes so strong that they block out the white base color, as in the picture above.
The term "Goshiki" translates literally to "five colors". The first Goshiki were produced by crossing Sanke and Asagi. Therefore, the five colors that comprise a Goshiki pattern refer to the red, white and black of Sanke, as well as the gray and blue of Asagi.
Ideally, the white (shiro) of the body should be clean and unblemished under the reticulated net pattern. The red (hi) should be solid and dark, with a constant hue and tone across the body. The hi of Goshiki will vary widely from koi to koi, but it should always be consistent in color and tone across the body of any one fish.
The hi patterns should be artistically balanced and spaced along the body of the koi, and should not be confined to one end or one side of the body. If the hi extends down onto the head, it should stop around the eyes, and should never extend all the way down the head to cover the nose.
The black and blue edging of the shiro scales should create a perfectly repeating net pattern, but should not intrude onto any of the hi scales. While this describes the ideal Goshiki, this arrangement of colors can be very difficult to find.
For more Goshiki images, check out the Goshiki Image Gallery.