Kanazawa is famous for its snow crabs. Here are five restaurants that serve outstanding crab dishes that you won't want to miss if you visit Kanazawa.
The brand of snow crab known as Kano crab, which is caught off of Ishikawa, is much sweeter than other types of snow crabs and is said to be the king of winter flavors. This kappo fine dining restaurant near the historic samurai house in the Nagamachi area serves whole Kano crabs. For about 14,000 JPY (market price), you can get sashimi of a whole crab or for about 8,000 JPY (market price) you can get a whole grilled crab. You can enjoy this expensive crab for a very reasonable price. The sake drunk from the shell after eating the kanimiso (brown meat) of Kano crab is scrumptious. If you'd like to taste outstanding Kano crab as cheaply as possible, visit this restaurant during Kano crab season, November to March.
2. Itaru Main Branch
Snow crab is famous for its taste. Kobako crabs, which are female snow crabs, are cheaper than male snow crabs, but their sotoko (eggs), uchiko (unfertilized eggs) and kanimiso are outstanding and the meat is also very flavorful! This restaurant offers Kobako crabs only during winter. They offer a Kobako Crab Plate (1,800 JPY, incl. tax), Kobako Crab Rice Bowl (1,900 JPY, incl. tax), and the ultimate Drunken Kobako Crab (2,500 JPY, incl. tax), which is marinated in sake for a whole month! If you'd like to taste rare delicacies in addition to authentic crab, try this restaurant.
Have you ever had piping hot boiled snow crab with steam coming out of it? Boiled snow crab is good cold, but it is exceptional when eaten freshly boiled as the natural sweet flavors permeate your mouth! This restaurant is famous for serving freshly boiled snow crab. The Bottomless Boiled Crab Course (available for parties of two or more; 5,500 JPY per person, excl. tax), and the Bottomless Boiled Crab + Grilled Crab Course (available for parties of two or more; 6,800 JPY per person, excl. tax), that serves char-grilled crab after the boiled crab, are especially recommended. Go to Benkichi if you want to eat crab until you are completely satisfied!
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This is a place where you can savor an outstanding Michelin 2-star kaiseki multi-course meal that includes crab steamed in a stone stove and kanimiso in a traditional Japanese house reminiscent of good, old Japan. If you would like to experience such a luxurious time, Suginoi is where to go. This restaurant is in a house that was built at the end of the Meiji era (1868 - 1912), and the beautiful Japanese garden can be enjoyed from any of the six rooms of varying sizes. The lunch kaiseki (6,500 JPY - 10,000 JPY; excl. seating fee, service, and tax) and dinner kaiseki (12,000 JPY - 18,000 JPY; excl. seating fee, service, and tax) menus change seasonally. If you'd like to have crab, go in the winter when snow crab is often included in the menu.
5. Daimyo Jaya
This is a restaurant for those of you who want to dig into crab the moment you arrive in Kanazawa. At this restaurant, a 3-minute walk from Kanazawa Station, they have the Kanizukushi Kaiseki (12,000 JPY, excl. tax), which includes grilled crab, crab pot, crab leg tempura, boiled crab, and crab zosui rice soup (requires reservation). In addition, you can taste dishes (incl. char grilled, boiled, and crab shabu shabu) made from oogon golden crab, a cross of male snow crab and female red snow crab that is so rare that are often referred to as the "phantom oogon crab" (April to October only, excluding August. 8,000 JPY - 10,000 JPY, excl. tax.) Kaga cuisine is characterized by fresh seafood and vegetables served on beautiful plates. Be sure to appreciate the plate that the crab is served on.
These are all restaurants that serve outstanding dishes with crab from the Sea of Japan. Whether you're looking for a merry meal with friends or a quiet meal in an elegant environment, you can select the restaurant based on your mood.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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