Pike Conger from Awaji Island

“Pike conger”, “conger eel”, and “daggertooth pike conger” are the various terms used to describe the special delicacy commonly known as pike conger (hamo in Japanese). In Japan, this dish is highly valued and treasured due to its rarity and the difficulty involved in preparing it.

On Awaji Island, pike conger is meticulously caught one by one using a fishing method called “hamo longline”. This careful method ensures that this ingredient has few blemishes and a golden color, earning them the nicknames “beautiful pike conger” or “golden pike conger”.

In this article, we will explore the unique qualities and exquisite flavors of Awaji Island’s beautiful and delicious pike conger.

Characteristics of Awaji Island Pike Conger

Pike conger from Awaji Island is prized for its firm texture, small face, and sleek figure, with most of those caught being female. Conger eel caught in the waters off Nushima, Awaji Island, benefit from the unique environment there. Raised on soft sandy soil, their belly skin remains thin and soft, unmarred by abrasion.

The strong currents of the Naruto Straits bring in fresh water, which attracts a variety of fish and crustaceans for the conger eel to feed on, contributing to their superior meat quality, richness, and vibrant color.

The peak season for Awaji Island conger eel is from early summer to autumn. During the spawning season in autumn, they grow fattier and typically reach lengths of 70 to 80 cm, with a weight of between 700 and 1,000 grams.

The History of the Prized Ingredient Pike Conger

Pike conger is hardy and was highly valued as a food ingredient even before the existence of advanced refrigeration, as they could be delivered alive to Kyoto and Osaka. In the early Tensho era (1573-1592), the “Zakoba” fish market in Osaka helped spread their popularity to Osaka and Amagasaki, making them a staple for locals. By 1697, they were renowned enough to be described as “Awaji Island Pike Conger”.

Nutritional Value and Benefits of Awaji Island Pike Conger

Chondroitin: Helps prevent skin aging and improves and prevents physical disorders. It also forms part of cartilage, aiding in the prevention of joint pain.

Vitamin A: A fat-soluble vitamin essential for beauty and health. It maintains eye and skin mucous membrane health, strengthens resistance, and supports night vision.

Restaurants Where You Can Enjoy Pike Conger

1) Auberge French Forest

This restaurant offers a unique fusion of French cuisine with Italian, Japanese, and Basque influences. During the peak pike conger season, the restaurant features luxurious dishes crafted with this prized ingredient. For more information about the timing of restaurants serving pike conger, please check our website regularly.

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Name Auberge “French Forest”
Address 2593-8 Kusumoto Aza Banaka, Awaji City, Hyogo Pref. 656-2301
TEL La Rose 0799-70-6062
Prince Etoile 0799-70-6061
Grand Baobab 0799-70-6063
Website https://frenchnomori.jp/
Reservations https://frenchnomori.jp/reservation/
Operation Hours Lunch – 11:30~15:30 (Last Entry: 13:00)
Dinner – 17:30~21:30 (Last Entry: 19:00)
Menu A Full-Course Lunch ¥7,000~/ A Full-Course Dinner ¥10,000~

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2) Ristorante Scuola

At Ristorante Scuola on the second floor of Nojima Scuola, you can enjoy cold pasta made with pike conger from Awaji Island. The firm ingredient, parboiled and lightly seared to bring out its mild yet rich flavor, pairs perfectly with capellini. This refreshing dish is perfect for the hot summer months.

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Name Ristorante Scuola
Address 843 Nojimahikinoura, Awaji City, Hyogo Pref. 656-1721
TEL 0799-82-1820
Official Web Site https://nojima-scuola.com/ristorante/
Reservations https://www.tablecheck.com/en/shops/nojima-scuola/reserve
Operation Hours 11:30 a.m.~3:30 p.m. (in by 2:00 p.m. & L.O. 2:00 p.m.)
6:00 p.m.~9:30 p.m.(in by 7:30 p.m. & L.O. 7:30 p.m.)
Closed Wednesdays

3) SEIKAIHA: Aonoya

Enjoy a course meal featuring fresh pike conger landed each morning at Yura Port on Awaji Island. Known for their rich fat content and meaty texture, Awaji Island’s pike conger can be savored in various preparations, including sashimi, hotpot, and tempura, each highlighting the eel’s exquisite flavor.

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Name SEIKAIHA - Aonoya
Address 70 Nojima-okawa, Awaji City, Hyogo Pref. 656-1723
Tel 0799-70-9020
Website https://awaji-seikaiha.com/aonoya/
Reservations https://www.tablecheck.com/en/shops/awaji-seikaiha/reserve
Operating Hours 11:00~15:00 (Last In 14:00, L.O. 14:00)
17:00~21:00 (Last In 19:30, L.O. 20:00)
Closed: Thursdays

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