Translated by Lester Somera
Savor Barbecued Oysters In Winter At Fukuoka's Kakigoya
You can enjoy winter-style barbecues at kakigoya! Check out Kakigoya Miwachan at the Funakoshi Port in Itoshima City for delicious oysters and seafood sashimi!
Written by Norihisa Hasegawa
In recent years there has been an increasingly popular winter leisure trend of eating oysters inside tents called kakigoya.
This article will introduce you to the joys of oysters at Kakigoya Miwachan, located at the Funakoshi fishing port in Itoshima, Fukuoka.
What Are Kakigoya?
Generally, kakigoya operate only in winter (from November to March), in tents and the like which have been set up at fishing ports. Though they are tents, they are hardy structures, and because gas ranges and charcoal fires are used inside, they are warm even in the winter. In these tents you can savor freshly caught oysters and other seafood, along with vegetables, barbecue-style. Many places allow BYOB, and families and groups can enjoy these places together. This lively group atmosphere is why kakigoya became popular.
Depending on the port, kakigoya tents have different capacities. Some places can even fit a hundred people, so you can use them for big groups. In that case, we recommend doing some research online so you can make a reservation.
Service at a Kakigoya
1. Order Your Oysters
After entering, order your oysters first. Most places sell oysters by the kilo or by the bucket. At Kakigoya Miwachan, the oysters are 1000 yen a bucket, and generally contain about ten. You can order more if that’s not enough, but if it’s your first time, try ordering one bucket.
After you order, you will be shown to your table, where a barbecue has been set up.
The kakigoya will put out gloves, scissors and other necessary tools for you, so you don’t need to prepare anything special.
Some places also provide you with outer garments, which will help you avoid getting your clothes dirty, so make use of them.
2. Order Fresh Seafood Too
Some kakigoya even have fish tanks inside the tent, and at places like these, you can also order sashimi and other fresh seafood.
When you want to order more oysters or other seafood, choose something from the menu at the table.
Since kakigoya are at fishing ports, this is your chance to eat some of the freshest possible seafood! Try out various treats like scallops (300 yen/pc), shrimp (350 yen/pc) and overnight-dried squid (600 yen/pc).
3. Grill Your Ingredients
If it’s your first time, ask the staff for grilling advice. They will teach you some tricks for grilling, and how long you should grill certain foods.
4. Bring Other Ingredients
One other way to enjoy kakigoya is bringing in some of your own food. Many kakigoya allow you to bring in rice balls and other simple food, so after you check to make sure it’s OK beforehand, buy some things at a supermarket. We recommend grilled rice balls.
5. Don’t Forget to Ask About Recommendations!
Ask the staff what they recommend. This kakigoya’s most popular item is oyster zosui, a seasoned rice porridge! Packed with the essence of oysters, this delicious dish will also keep your body warm!
How to Enjoy Kakigoya
When you visit a kakigoya, you’ll have a better time if you call ahead or check online to see if you can make a reservation and whether or not you can bring in other food. Kanto and Kansai have kakigoya you can experience, as well as dining establishments themed around the same concept, so by all means, enjoy kakigoya and have a winter barbecue with your family and friends!
Address: Fukuoka, Itoshima, Funakoshi
Hours: 9:00-17:00 (closes when supply runs out)
Closed: No fixed holidays
Credit cards: No
Nearest Station: Chikuzen-Maebaru Station
Access: 15 minutes by taxi from Chikuzen-Maebaru Station
Price range: 1000 yen per basket, 300 yen for gas