What To Look For
Kin Kikokuryu highly resemble Doitsu Gin Matsuba. The difference comes in the presence of a third color (red, orange or yellow) and the fact that Kin Kikokuryu have an underlying black pattern that occurs across the entire body, even on the mouth, head and fins. The underlying body-wide sumi is absent in Doitsu Gin Matsuba, where the sumi appears only in the row of scales down the back.
Many different shades of red, yellow or orange can appear in Kin Kikokuryu. Kikokuryu with a strong red pattern are often referred to as Beni Kikokuryu. Currently, no one color is preferred over the others.
As with Kumonryu and Kikokuryu, the pattern of any single Kin Kikokuryu will change greatly over the course of growth to maturity. For this reason, much importance is placed on body conformation and the quality of the colors themselves (but not the pattern).
When selecting young Kin Kikokuryu, make sure that there are no flaws or blemishes in the base sumi or the overlying metallic white. Select young koi with a good orange, yellow, or red pattern, as this color will change the least of all as the koi ages into maturity.