Japanese eel is actually categorized as an endangered species in the Japanese Ministry of the Environment . It costs a fortune to eat a wild eel and in Japan, I have been told the chef won't even serve it to you if they think you are not seasoned enough to appreciate the true taste of a wild caught Japanese eel! Most of what is consumed at the restaurants are farm-raised but the current eel farming practices is not sustainable. So who knows? Maybe we will have to eat something else on doyō-no ushi-no-hi in the near future!
Actually, I didn't eat eel myself last night but I wanted to share my experience at Kyoto-ya (京都屋) a few months ago. It is one of the most popular unagi restaurants in Taipei. The other ones being Hizen-ya (肥前屋), Hamamatsu-ya (濱松屋), and Kemmonchi-ya (劍持屋). Except for the last one, I have tried all three now. Check out my blog post here about my experience with Hizen-ya (肥前屋) and Hamamatsu-ya (濱松屋)!
Hizen-ya (肥前屋) and Kyoto-ya (京都屋) are very close to each other so Kyoto-ya (京都屋) serves as an excellent alternative when Hizen-ya (肥前屋) gets too busy! However, after trying Kyoto-ya (京都屋), I think my favorite is still Hizen-ya (肥前屋).
|Unaju and unagi egg roll @ Hizen-ya|
This was from my recent visit in February 2014.
|I like the unaju at Hizen-ya more because there are more unagi|
It is also more charred and flavorful~
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