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Fukuoka Fish Market

January 2021

NISHIKI-BURI - Farm-Raised Yellowtail

The Nishiki Buri is very plump and does not have a fishy smell like farm-raised fish usually does. You can taste the umami in the fat, and this Buri exceeds the o-toro from Bluefin Tuna. This Buri (farm-raised Hamachi) even surpasses the famous wild Himi-Buri, which is recognized as one of the top Buri brands according to the auction buyers in Toyosu Fish Market. This is the real deal!!



The north-flowing Kuroshio Current brings a rich ocean harvest to Tosashimizu City in the southeastern part of Kochi, Japan. Fishers on small boats catch Kinmedai one by one with fly fishing gear. The fish are handled very carefully, and that very evening they are packed for shipping to cities in the USA.

AKAMUTSU - Blackthroat

Benihitomi is the brand name for Akamutsu caught in Tsushima and the Iki Island area sea using the  Jigokunawa fishing style. Benihitomi is known as “the King of Akamutsu.”

MEJINA - Largescale Blackfish

If you are looking to eat the best Mejina, now is the season! Mejina in the winter has a very fresh taste with delicious fat. The firm texture of this fish is said to be even better than that of Madai (sea bream). We recommend serving our Mejina with the skin, using the matsukawa-zukuri technique.

SAWARA - Spanish Mackerel

The Sawara season is recognized as spring. However, on the eastern side of Japan, the season starts in the autumn. The fatty meat before the spawning season is favored there. Fresh quality Sawara is good for sashimi as well as other cooking styles such as saikyozuke and yuanyaki.

KURODAI - Black Bream

In Fukuoka, Kurodai is called Meita or Chinu, depending on its size. When it is over 11 inches, it is called Chinu. During its best season, the taste of Kurodai is said to be as good as Madai, if not better.

KUE - Longtooth Grouper

Only a small amount of Kue is available in the seafood market, so this is a very prized fish in Japan. This fish is tasty year-round. In the cold winter season, it’s excellent for Japanese dishes in the hot-pot style.

AMADAI - Japanese Tilefish

In the season from fall to early spring, Amadai is particularly rich in fat and delicious sweetness.

HIRAME - Fluke (Wild)

In the cold winter season from November to February, Hirame has a good firm texture and is full of tasty fat. In recent years, there has been a large amount of farm-raised Hirame in the Fukuoka Fish Market, but wild Hirame in this season has an incomparable taste.

TACHIUO - Beltfish

The Tachiuo breeding season is from June to October. After the breeding season, the fish grows larger, and from fall to winter, the fatty taste is even better.

KASAGO - Marbled Rockfish

In Japan, Kasago is one of the seasonal words (kigo) associated with spring. However, in the present day, Kasago is available year-round in the fish market. The taste is best from the end of November to February. In Fukuoka, it’s called Arakabu and is a very popular fish in this area. It has refined white flesh and is quite perishable. However, we ship it very fresh to the U.S. market to maintain its good quality.

MEDAI - Japanese Buttlerfish

The best season for Medai is from fall to winter. This fish is easy to cook because the scales are very small, and the bones are easily cut. This is a high-value fish for its cost. The white flesh has a very good umami taste, but its price is reasonable compared to other fishes. Its soft texture is good for various cooking styles. Simmered and hot-pot styles are especially suitable for the cold winter season.

KAMASU - Japanese Barracuda

In the fall and winter season, Kamasu has a white meat with moderate fat. It’s very good for usuzukuri-style sashimi, salted grasilled fish, sakamuchi, steamed fish, and, of course, sushi. Kamasu is an all-purpose fish.

RENKODAI - Yellowback Sea Bream

In Japanese fish markets, when this fish is compared to Madai (Sea Bream), the name might be valued less, but the taste is just as good. Roasting with some skin left on enhances the delicious taste.

HOUBOU - Sea Robin

Houbou is a tasty fish year-round, but especially from November to February when the meat has rich fat content and is extremely delicious. The white meat has a rich umami taste. It’s good for simmered or grilled fish and sashimi.

KAWAHAGI - Filefish

The taste of Filefish  is good year-round, but autumn is the best season for this fish. Sashimi with Kimo-Shoyu is supremely delicious. Kimo-Shoyu is a mixture of soy sauce and boiled fish liver.

UMAZURAHAGI - Black Scraper

This meat’s flavor is considered best from the end of summer to fall. However, another opinion has it that winter is the best season because the liver becomes larger and very tasty from late autumn to spring.

KANPACHI - Amberjack

The fresh meat of Kanpachi has lower fat content than other yellowtail family fishes (Buri, Hiramasa). Wild Kanpachi has a higher value in the Fukuoka Fish Market than other yellowtail family fishes because it has a smaller catch quota than Wild Buri and Hiramasa.

YAZU/INADA - Young Yellowtail

Yazu is a Shusseuo name for young Yellowtail in the Fukuoka Fish Market. It has less fatty meat than Buri but an elegant sweetness and a satisfying texture.

KAN BURI - Yellowtail Wild

Kanburi is from Tsushima and the Iki Islands of Nagasaki, Japan, that are not caught in fishing nets but only by single-hook fishing. This tradition not only prevents overfishing in the area but allows each fish to be caught carefully one by one and kept fresh. Immediately after being caught, a traditional Japanese technique called ikijime and shinkeijime are used.  Please try our premium Kanburi.

SAYORI - Halfbeak

Sayori season is recognized as winter to spring, but the autumn taste is good, too. It is amazing for both hosozukuri and itozukuri. Of course, it is essential as sushi for hikarimono.

INA-SABA - Mackerel (Wild)

The Ina-Saba brand of Japanese mackerel is caught in the rich waters of the Tsushima area. Only selected pieces are chosen for the Ina-Saba brand, according to the following strict standards:

1) Caught by pole-and-line 2) No scratches on the body 3) More than 6 hours cooling time immediately after harvest 4) Size.

KONOSHIRO - Gizzard Shad

The best season for Konoshiro (kohada) in Fukuoka is from fall to winter. Konoshiro is a very important ingredient in Edomae-style sushi. It’s not too much to say that a sushi chef’s skill can be measured by the taste of his Konoshiro nigiri sushi.


Shirako is often called Kiku or Kikuko due to its resemblance to the Kiku flower (chrysanthemum). Another name for it is Tachi. There are many other names depending on what type of fish it is from. Fresh Shirako makes for excellent sushi.

AORI IKA - Bigfin Reef Squid

Aori Ika is known as the king of squids, and its sashimi is considered to be of the finest quality in the squid family. Its flesh is rich in sweetness and is very soft, but its texture has good strength. It is a very popular and crucial item in Edomae-style sushi and tempura.

KO IKA - Golden Cuttlefish

A type of squid called Ko Ika, also called Sumi Ika in the Kantō region, is very popular and crucial seafood used for Edomae-style sushi and tempura. Due to its popularity, Ko Ika is very expensive at the market and can cost up to $200/kg at the beginning of its best season. Baby squid, called Shin Ika, reaches its best season and gets shipped into the market from around July. Later, Ko Ika has its best season from late autumn to early spring.

AO AWABI - Abalone

In the Chikuzen Sea, there are three sub-spices of Ao Awabi, but the most harvested one is Kuro Awabi. (Saga, Nagasaki, and Fukuoka: 300g up for large size)

AO/AKA Namako - Blue/Sea Cucumber 

The Namako harvested in November are called Furuko (older, i.e. one-two years old). Furuko is larger and darker colored because it’s mature. You can feel the powerful aroma of the sea and chewy texture.

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