Kawahagi/Filefish: As Delicious But Cheaper Than Fugu/Puffer!

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Chef Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太さん at Sushi Ko/すし幸 Sushi Restaurant in Shizuoka City holding a live filefish before preparing it!

Kawahagi, or Filefish or Leather jacket in the Land of Oz, must be one of the most underrated fish in the World!
Some people go as far as to say that penny for penny it is worth more than overpriced puffer/globefish/fugu!
And moreover it is safer!
Kawahagi or Thread-sail Filefish (or simply Filefish) is an angler’s favorite in summer, although it is caught almost all year round in Shizuoka.
Like any other fishes, it has other names such as “Gihagi, “Hagi”, “Gyuu”, “Subuta” or “bakuchiuchi”.
It is fairly common in Central and South Japan.
It is called Leather jJcket down in Australia where it is considered a pest!

The skin should be rough like that of a shark and brightly coloured.
Avoid sticky skin fish.
The bigger the size, the greater the taste (anglers, enjoy!)

In Kansai area, it replaces Fugu/Globefish when it is out of season for its similarity as sashimi.

It is such an eclectic fish that it can be appreciated as sushi, sashimi, marinated, or cooked, especially deep-fried!
When ordering such a fish at a sushi restaurant always ask it to prepared from a live fish, an easy thing here in Shizuoka Ciy as Sushi Ko Restaurant always two or three varieties swimming in their tanks!
The trick is to ask the chef to serve the whole and single fish in as many presentations as possible!
let me show you what Chef Kenta Birukawa/尾留川健太さん came up with!

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The presentation as o-tsukuri/お作り, that is the fish cut in sashimi/slices of raw fish.
It can be cut as thinly as puffer fish and make for as beautiful!

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It is served with small sticks of sscallion/negi/葱 that you wrap with thin slices of the fish. A great way to prove your dexterity with chopsticks!

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As for the dip or seasoning you do not use soy sauce.
Chef Birukawa will serve you a dip sauce made with the fresh liver of the same fish seasoned with ponzu/lime vinegar and some secret ingredients.
Dip your fish and scallion into it before savoring it.
Do not discard any liver sauce leftover!

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Another beautiful presentation of a larger variety!

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As for sushi there two main possibilities with the thin slices of the filefish and its raw liver!

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A nigiri/握り with chopped thin leeks under the fish topped with its liver!
A little dip in soy sauce will be more than enough!

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A “gunkan/軍艦/mother ship” with the sashimi topped with its liver and chopped thin leeks!
Ask the chef to sprinkle with a tiny amount of ponzu!

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And the deep-fried jowls of the same fish you eat with your fingers (that you lick later!) to cap it all!
Have I convinced you to look for that fish next time you see it in a good sushi restaurant or in a market?

SUSHI KO

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

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)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

So Good Sushi Restaurant in Nice France
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pie
rre.Cuisine
, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City

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Sushi Restaurant: Dinner at Sushi Ko (March 2015) in Shizuoka City!

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Service: Pro and very friendly
Facilities: Very clean. Excellent and spacious washroom
Prices: Reasonable (for sushi!)
Strong points: Great variety of seafood from Shizuoka Prefecture and the rest of Japan. Great list of sake and shochu

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O-Toshi/お通し, the snack coming with the first drink. Firefly squid/Hotaru ika/蛍烏賊!

Sushi Ko is a favorite sushi bar/restaurant of mine in Shizuoka City for many reasons:
The prices are clearly indicated (bear in mind though that the o-toshi/snack will be charged). If you ask for a special order the staff will be glad to prepare according to a pre-agreed budget.
The variety of seafood is unequaled in the City thanks to very very strong ;inks with fishermen and fish markets all over Japan. Moreover, it serves a splendid array of local products seasoned with locally-grown fresh wasabi!
Even vegetarians and vegans can be catered for!

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We always start with a plate of sashimi, and I can assure you it is always an embarrassment of chices!

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Ishidai/石鯛/Striped beakfish or Barred Knifejaw from Suruga Bay!
Did you know that Suruga Bay in Shizuoka Prefecture is the richest sea in seafood varieties in japan?

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Katsuo/鰹/Bonito, the fish which made Shizuoka famous all over Japan!
Probably better than maguro/鮪/Tuna!

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Yariika/槍烏賊/Spear Squid served as “Ika Soumen”/烏賊素麺/Squid noodles”!

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if you don’t like raw squid, do try “Geso karaage/ゲソ唐揚げ/Deep-fried squid tentacles!
A must with any drink!

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When it comes to sushi nigiri/寿司握り/sushi served atop a rice ball, we always order “Maguro zuke/鮪漬/tuna marinated in soy sauce, mirin, sake and other ingredients beforehand! Almost a dessert!

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In season we can’t resist Hotate/帆立/scallop!

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When it comes to Tachiuo/太刀魚/Scabbard Fish or Spear Fish, another fish abundant in Suruga Bay, you can choose from many ways of preparation: raw, seared, pre-seasoned and so on.
Our favorite is to have it served seared on one side first, then seasoned with momiji oroshi/紅葉下ろし/grated daikon mixed with red chili pepper powder, and a dash of ponzu/ポン酢/a citrus-based sauce lighter and tastier than soy sauce!

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Amaebi/甘エビ/Sweet shrimps from the North of Japan!

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When it comes to rolls, we are very fond of another Shizuoka specialty: Anakyuu/穴キュー/a roll made with raw cucumber (“kyuu”) and broiled conger eel (“ana” from “anago/穴子”!) seasoned with tare/垂れ/japanese broiling sauce!

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Another roll I always oreder that should please all vegetarians and vegans: natto-shiso-ume maki/納豆紫蘇梅巻”!
It is made with natto/fermented soy beans, shiso/perilla leaf and ume/pickled Japanese plum!

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Some ingredients are best served in “gunkan/軍艦/Mother Ship Style/ atop a rice ball wrapped in dry seaweed/nori/海苔! Shiroebi/白海老/White Shrimps from Toyama Prefecture!

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Sushi Ko is great not only for their sushi and sashimi but also for eminently enjoyable cooked food such as this tempura/天婦羅 plate in the above picture!

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To bring the last touch to a delicious dinner we have favorites of our own.
Dragon will always order a ikura ko-donburi/イクラ子丼? small bowl of sushi rice topped with salmon roe nicely decorated with finely sliced cucumber and seasoned with freshly grated wasabi!

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As for me, it is a dessert consisting of tamagoyaki/卵焼き/Japanese omelet!

SUSHI KO/すし幸

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)

RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES

So Good Sushi Restaurant in Nice France
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pie
rre.Cuisine
, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,

Must-see tasting websites:

-Sake: Ichi For The Michi by Rebekah Wilson-Lye in Tokyo, Tokyo Through The Drinking Glass, Tokyo Foodcast, Urban Sake, Sake World
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery

Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents

HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City