The remarkable skill behind Kochi’s soul food

Anybody familiar with Kochi is probably aware of the spectacle, that is, the creation of Kochi’s soul food called katsuo no tataki. Slicing the bonito into perfect filets, sprinkling the right amount of salt, and searing it in a blazing rice straw fire are not easy tasks, and chefs spend years honing their skills

Find out what it takes at Kuroshio Kobo where you can try searing your own bonito! You can either start with fileting an entire bonito or get one that is pre-cut. Although it may look easy when the master chef does it, slicing through fish is no simple task. Confidence when wielding the knife, sheer precision and understanding of the fish’s anatomy can determine whether you can put together enough meat for a side dish or serve an epic feast

The searing is certainly the most visually striking part of the process with flames roaring high and wild in the Pacific Ocean breeze. Timing is key to getting the right sear, involving about one minute in the fire, then turning the fillet over, to get another 20 seconds on the other side. It might sound like a very short amount of time, but it can feel rather long as your forearms need to work hard to keep the heavy fork steady in the flame. At this point, your appreciation and awe toward katsuo master chefs who do this multiple times a day, has probably reached an all-time high (at least, that’s how it was for me)

But the best part? Devouring your very own freshly-seared bonito! There's no doubt the hard work you put in will only enhance the eating experience

Fun fact! Bonito caught in autumn is called modori katsuo (returning bonito), which tends to be fattier and richer than those caught in other seasons

Kuroshio Kobo
The opportunity to sear your own bonito is offered between April and October
Reserve a time slot before your visit
  • The remarkable skill behind Kochi’s soul food

  • The remarkable skill behind Kochi’s soul food

  • The remarkable skill behind Kochi’s soul food