What to Eat in Nagoya: Hitsumabushi

12 April 2015

One thing I try to do when visiting each prefecture is to try their 名物 meibutsu (local specialities).

In Nagoya, one of these local specialities is  ひつまぶし Hitsumabushi (broiled eel)!

Ugh, I feel so hungry now looking at this photo! >_<

We headed to a pretty famous restaurant, 蓬莱軒 Horaiken to eat it.

We arrived at about 5pm and the guard at the carpark said to us, “You picked a good time to come! You can be seated immediately!” He told us that usually there are extremely long queues during lunch and dinner.

SCORE!!! Cause it was our first proper meal of the day and we were famished!

Fu looking at a menu in Japan means at least of the following:

  • The menu is in English, or
  • There are pictures

In this case, it’s both of the above.

If the menu is in Japanese without pictures, he will simply push the menu to me and say “Choose for me!” -_-

And is it just me? But I really love restaurants where we can sit on tatami mats!

Horaiken serves different types of eel rice, but of course we chose the hitsumabushi set!

The difference between hitsumabushi from regular unagi-don (eel on a bowl of rice) is that there are three different ways to enjoy it!

In addition, the eel pieces are also sliced smaller than the typical unagi-dons.

Toppings: Seaweed, wasabi, spring onion

Anywhere else, I wouldn’t touch the spring onion with a 10-foot pole because it’s so stinky and gross. But in Japan, it’s so fresh that I actually don’t mind it!

We ate in the three ways as recommended and the favorite way to eat it for the both of us is… the second way! With toppings and without broth!

Not sure if it’s because we were starving, or if hitsumabushi is really that much more yummy than normal eel, but I found this extra delicious! Fu usually doesn’t like eel because he finds it fishy and slimy, but he actually liked this too!

The only downside is that it’s quite pricey. It’s 3,600 yen (S$35) for one set. We both shared one though, so that we have space for other food, heh.

Visited on 25 March 2015

Hitsumabushi in Nagoya

Some places to eat Hitsumabushi

We ate at: Horaiken, Jingu branch

Click for other Nagoya posts:

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