Category Archives: Sushi restaurants.

Japanese Shellfish Species 2: Scallops-Hotategai-帆立貝

hotategai.jpg

Hotategai/帆立貝, or Scallops, is another worldwide favourite and also a source of dispute caused by illegal poaching, international or domestic.
The season is summer and the shellfish is sometimes called Akitagai/秋田貝, as of Akita Prefecture.
They are caught off Hokkaido, Aomori, Iwate and Miyagi Prefectures.
The domestic production/catch is over 300.000 tonnes a year, while 400 tonnes are imported from China as whole Scallops and 700 tonnes as the muscle part only (“kaibashira/貝柱”). Japanese scallops will be significantly larger than the Chinese.

Of course, they are much appreciated as sashimi, but also as sushi:
HOTATENIGIRI

(pic taken at Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City)

They are also much appreciated cooked/grilled in the shell with just a little shoyu and sake:
HOTAGE-GRILLED

Actually, a good-class sushi restaurant will serve the muscle part as sashimi or sushi, and will serve the rest of the shellfish cooked in light broth inside the shell later!

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Sushi Restaurants: Shizuoka Seafood at Sushi Ko (December 2011)

Service: Pro and very friendly
Facilities: Very clean. Excellent toilets
Prices: Reasonable
Strong points: Great variety of seafood from Shizuoka Prefecture and the rest of Japan. Great list of sake!

December has seen the cold weather settle in at long last!
This is good news for sushi lovers as a marked change of weather means new seafood varieties coming in!
Naturally, we visited our favorite sushi restaurant in Shizuoka, namely Sushi Ko in Aoba Koen Street!
Here is what we enjoyed!

Snack coming with the first drink: Kanpachi aburi/環八炙り, seared Amberjack.

No need to say that sake was on order: Masu Ichi Brewery from Shizuoka City!

Little beauties from Shizuoka and Akita Prefectures!

Sakura ebi/桜海老/Cherry shrimps from Yui!

Shirauo/白魚/Icefish from Akita Prefecture!

Hirame/平目/Flafish sashimi from Suruga Bay!

Seguro Iwashi/背黒鰯/”Black back” Sardine sashimi from Suruga Bay!

Buri/鰤/Yellowtail chu toro and toro sashimi from Ishikawa Prefecture!

It’s not all raw fish at Sushi Ko!
Among their cooked specialties we have a special fondness for their Ponkara Maguro/ポンカラ鮪/Deep-fried tuna cubes served with momijioroshi/紅葉下ろし/grated daikon with chili pepper!

Kampachi Tataki/環八タタキ/Amberjack filets that have been seared well before being plunged into cold water and later served as sashimi.

Sushi Ko’s specialty: Sushi Millefeuille!

I cannot visit a sushi restaurant without asking for Maguro Zuke/鮪漬け”/marinated tuna akami/lean part

Comfort dishes for a cold winter: Hotate guratan/帆立グラタン/Scallops Gratin!

Chawanmushi/茶碗蒸し/Japanese hot salted pudding!

Geso karaage/ゲソ唐揚げ/Deep-fried squid tentacles!

Back to raw food! Hotate nigiri/帆立握り?Scallops nigiri!

Ama ebi/甘海老/Sweet Shrimps

Sushi for vegetarians: Yama Imo Gunkan/山芋軍艦!

A universal favorite: Piri kara hotate kariforunya roru/ピリ辛帆立カリフォルニアロル/Hot scallops California Roll!

Tamagoyaki/玉子焼き/Japanese omelette for dessert!

And kinoko miso siru/キノコ味噌汁/miso soup with mushrooms, and plenty of seaweed, to wash it all down!

To be continued…

SUSHI KO
420-0032 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 2-3-1 (Aoba Park Street)
Tel.: 054-251-9701
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (in Japanese)
Smoking allowed. Private room can be arranged for non-smoking (4 people)


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Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Sushi in Shizuoka City: Sushi Ko (September 2011)

“Super California Roll”!

Service: Very friendly and attentive. Always ready to please
Facilities: great overall cleanliness
Prices: Appropriate. Good value
Strong points: Great blending of local and all-Japan seafood. Great list of Shizuoka sakes! Both modern and traditional sushi.

We are entering the Autumn season, albeit a very hot one, and new fish are being caught.
It was time to visit Sushi Ko, my favorite sushi bar/resturant in Shizuoka City to check on the new arrivals!

The present Master of the Place, Mr. Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太 has just been rewarded with the Gold Medal at the Japan National Sushi Design Contest, an event held every 4 years!
Mr. Oda, the former Master, who is presently in charge of the mother company, was also rewarded the same prize 4 years ago!

So, what did we enjoy?

Kinmeidai/金目鯛/Splendid Alfonsino sashimi (Izu Peninsula).

Beautiful colors!
Notice the edible shiso/perilla/紫蘇 flowers!

This is the season of the katsuo/鰹/bonito which swim across the Suruga Bay!

Usually served with freshly grated ginger, chopped scallions and thinly sliced red onions.
Thinly sliced fresh garlic is another option!

A wink to America: Super California Roll! Can you guess what’s in it?

Sake from Masu Ichi Brewery in Shizuoka City!

Chyawanmushi/茶碗蒸/ Japanese steamed salted pudding!

Hirame/平目/Sole-Grouper (Shizuoka) just seasoned with a little salt and lime juice. No need for soy sauce!

Sazae/サザエ/Turbo Shell!

the whole flesh is first taken out, sliced and cooked inside the shell!

The liver of the turbo shell!

Tachiuo/太刀魚/Scabbard Fish (Shizuoka) served as aburi/炙り/grilled on the skin surface seasoned with ponzu and served with momijioroshi/grated daikon and chili pepper, and chopped scallions.

A sneak view of the sashimi plate prepared for a group of five at a table!

Magurozuke/鮪漬け/marinated tuna (lean part), a real dessert!

Ikura/イクラ/salmon’s roe served as “gunkan nigiri/軍艦握り/Mothership Nigiri. Notice the small empty “boats” following the mothership?

A cute fleet, isn’t it?

How about that for tamagoyaki/玉子焼き/Japanese omelette design?

Anago/穴子/conger eel (Shizuoka), a universal favorite!

A vegan sushi nigiri with lightly boiled Chinese cabbage and Japanese hot mustard!

A real dessert: Home-made fig Wine Stew!

To be followed…

SUSHI KO
420-0032 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 2-3-1 (Aoba Park Street)
Tel.: 054-251-9701
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (in Japanese)

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Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box, My Bento Box, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat; Bento Lunch Blog (German); Adventures In Bento; Anna The Red’s Bento Factory; Cooking Cute; Timeless Gourmet; Bento Bug; Ideal Meal; Bentosaurus; Mr. Foodie (London/UK); Ohayo Bento

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Sushi Restaurant: Sushi Ko in Shizuoka City (June 2011)

Umazura tsukuri/ウマズラ造り/Filefish sashimi plate!

Sushi Ko in Aoba Park Street in Shizuoka City is the sushi bar owned by Sushi Ko Main Sushi Restaurant in Ta-machi in the same city.
Mr. Oda has just been asked to take charge of the main restaurant while his very capable second, Mr. Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太さん has been promoted Head of the Sushi Bar in Aoba.
The Bar is as good as ever, but now I will also have to check the main restaurant!

While the Missus drank her Chardonnay, I was sipping my sake brewed by Takashima Brewery in Numazu City. The above shows the snack coming with the first drink: octopus/tako/蛸 served with seaweed, momijioroshi/grated daikon with chili pepper, chopped thin leeks and ponzu!

We managed to get our favorite seats at the counter, but one half of the tatami room was busy with a group of 11 hungry salarymen!
Loads of consecutive work!

Our seats gave us the perfect view of the chefs at work!
They know us well, so they actually welcome the photography (without flash!), but make a point to ask for permission if you are a new customer (the latter applies for any restaurant!)!

On the menu of the day they had umazura tsukuri/ウマズラ造り/Filefish Sashimi Plate.
This fish whose name literally means “Horse face” is a kind of filefish found in Suruga Bay.
It was taken alive out of the fish pond!

Filefish in general is not that popular in other countries, but it definitely deserves attention.
Although it has not much meat, it makes for beautiful sashimi!

For a closer view!

Here it is, served with a dip made with its fresh liver and ponzu!
A real morsel!

Its cheeks were served deep-fried!

Chef Birukawa has kept a little to serve the perfect filefish nigiri topped with its liver and momijioroshi and some thin leeks and wasabi between the neta/topping and the shari/rice!

The Missus always asks for the maguro ponkara/鮪ぽんから/deep-fried tuna served with momiji oroshi, ponzu and sliced red onions!

Whatever the sushi restaurant we always ask for magurozuke/鮪漬/marinated tuna as each establishment has a different recipe!

Sushi Ko always have great botan ebi/牡丹海老/large sweet prawn from Hokkaido in season!

Their freshness means we are guaranteed their deep-fried heads. They make for beautiful crackers!

When we asked for anago/穴子/conger eel, they came in the perfect combination of one piece shio-aji/塩味/salted and the other one, tare-aji/たれ味/brushed with sweet sauce!

Another favorite: tachiuo aburi nigiri/太刀魚炙り握り/Seared scabbard fish nigiri seasoned with ponzu!

Chef Mirukawa’s specialty: Sushi Millefeuille!

The Millefeuille was made with maguro akami/lean tuna, cucumber, avocado and topped with flying fish roe!

A vegetarian/vegan sushi roll with natto, shiso and umboshi!

Another vegetarian/vegan sushi roll with kanpyou/干瓢/dry gourd shavings and plenty of wasabi!

Tamagoyaki/Japanese omelette!

We usually finish such meals with hot food.
The Missus had nameko mushroom miso soup with plenty of seaweed.

As for me I had chyawanmushi/茶碗蒸し/Japanese-style hot salted pudding!

And we were graciously offered Shizuoka-grown musk melon as we paid our (very reasonable) bill!

To continue…

SUSHI KO
420-0032 Shizuoka City, Aoi Ku, Ryogae-cho, 2-3-1 (Aoba Park Street)
Tel.: 054-251-9701
Business Hours: 17:00~25:00. 17:00~23:00 (Sundays)
Closed on Wednesdays
Reservations recommended
Credit cards OK
HOMEPAGE (in Japanese)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

With a Glass,
POPCORNHOMESTEAD in Tokyo by Joan Lambert Bailey,
Clumsyfingers by Xethia
Adventures in Bento Making, American Bento, Beanbento, Bento No1, Bento Wo Tsukurimashou, Cooking Cute, Eula, Hapabento , Happy Bento, Jacki’s Bento Blog, Kitchen Cow, Leggo My Obento, Le Petit Journal Bento & CO (French), Lunch In A Box, My Bento Box, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, The Herbed Kitchen, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat; Bento Lunch Blog (German); Adventures In Bento; Anna The Red’s Bento Factory; Cooking Cute; Timeless Gourmet; Bento Bug; Ideal Meal; Bentosaurus; Mr. Foodie (London/UK); Ohayo Bento

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Good Beer & Country Boys, Another Pint, Please!
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery