#6. Pike Conger Cuisine at Kappo Nakagawa Shijo
Hamo aka the pike conger or daggertooth is emblematic of Kyoto cuisine, and nowhere is it served with more loving care than at Kappo Nagawa Shijo.
Hikko Nakagawa pioneered eating hamo in the shabu-shabu dipping style at his restaurant in the Gion geisha district, and his son Masahiro Nakamura has continued the tradition for the last 18 years in the relatively informal setting of this branch in downtown Kyoto.
What really sets Nakagawa apart from other restaurants is the quality of his wonderful dashi stock, a characteristic combination of konbu kelp and katsuo bonito fish whose exact combination is a closely guarded secret. The hamo, which you simmer all so briefly in the stock in a golden dish at your table, is ready when it curves into white arc of succulent fishy flesh. Try it too grilled over charcoal in the sumibiyaki style.
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A version of this article originally appeared in the award-winning luxury travel and lifestyle magazine DestinAsian, the prime publication for those who love to travel, and travel in style in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. Sincerest thanks for their permission to reprint it here. Photos © John F. Ashburne.