When we hear “sashimi”, usually what comes to mind is fish. But there are actually a wide variety of sashimi, such as horse sashimi and chicken sashimi. And, since ancient times in Japan, there is frog sashimi. (Here is where we try it out so you don’t have to.) We went to a Tokyo restaurant that we heard serves frog sashimi, “Asadachi” (which means morning wood, you know), about 3 minutes walk from Shinjuku station in ‘Piss Alley‘.
The frogs used in the dishes aren’t frogs they just caught in their backyard, but bullfrogs raised specifically for cooking, and therefore safe and delish. Asadachi ships in only about 5 frogs per day, so you should call ahead to check availability before coming.
Redefining Fresh, not Frozen
The frogs are kept live in the kitchen until someone places an order, at which point they enter their next stage of existence. This super-fresh sashimi is actually prepared in front of the customer (see video) – definitely not the most comfortable part of the experience, but it did evoke some existential questions. In any case, if you don’t think you can handle this part of the gastronomic experience, then you should probably stay home. Even further, though the frog is killed instantly by the chef’s knife, it does twitch for a few minutes longer (again, see video). The dishing presentation is also … striking – see pics and vids below(!). Did we mention the twitching around?
Very light and fresh-tasting, not gamy or odd
It was surprising how light and fresh-tasting the meat was. There was no gaminess and it was even lighter than chicken sashimi. As for texture, there was some chewiness for sure, but somehow yummier than chicken or tuna sashimi. Also, it has less fat than chicken meat – who knows, it could be the next healthy meat fad.
No Bits Leftover – Into the Soup!
After the sashimi bits are taken off, the rest of the frog is simmered to make a slightly spicy soup. We were surprised at how delicious the frog was, from start to finish. So, there it is. How about trying it out for yourselves?
Get the Idea? Eat Everything!
Other finds on the menu at Asadachi are the testicles, uteruses (uteri?), and breasts of pig, in sashimi form or cooked. Chinese softshell turtle (suppon) is also available at low cost, though reservations are required. This is the restaurant for you, if you believe in the invigorating, potency-enhancing effects of eating these unusual animal parts.
Name: Asadachi 朝起（あさだち）
Location: 3 min. from JR Shinjuku Station, west exit.
Hours: 12:00 – 23:00, closed Mondays
▼Video of the frog sashimi – does not include preparation of the frog.
▼Video of the frog sashimi – not for the squeamish; DOES show preparation of the frog.
▼Video from some prior report. “Eating Frog sashimi and a beating heart”
▼Entering ‘Piss Alley’ aka Omoide Yokocho (Memory Lane)
▼In front of the restaurant
[ Read in Japanese ]