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Deadly fugu fish mix-up prompts emergency warning

By Yoshikazu Tsuno

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Eating the liver could put you out of your misery fugud.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Guess I'm having curry tonight.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I lived there 2 years ago. Normally nothing ever happens there !

Hope nobody gets hurt.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Zichi, this is some of the best fish that you will experience. If you buy it from Tsukiji its as risky as buying scallops from your known fishmonger.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

I would never eat it, not worth the risk.

@ Zichi - when prepared by a licensed chef, who knows how to remove the toxins, fugu is rarely ever dangerous. It is only when have-a-go Jiro at home starts hacking it up after God knows how many cups of sake - which usually gets reported once or twice a season - that fatalities and severe sicknesses occur.

Ive tried it too, in sashimi form - a rather bland fish from memory. Maybe there are tastier ways to prepare it? Pricey for the novely factor and prep time I guess. I can think of dozens of yummier seafoods Ive had here! Give me katsuo any day!

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@Tigers - thanks for the heads up, will try fugu nabe next time!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

maybeperhaps - hirezake. Great drink. Remember drinking it with my missus in a seaside ryokan in Ito on the way down to Shimoda.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I think fugu is tasty, but I never paid for it, always been invited to parties that had it. It’s not THE most awesome fish on the planet, but tasty. There is a bit of overhype, but done well, it’s a pretty good fish to eat, fried, sashimi or in sake (which will really knock you off your socks if you’re not careful) but is it worth the high price....not for me, but if you’re buying, I go!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Why play Russian roulette when you eat?

You can ask the chef to leave enough toxin in for your lips to start to tingle. These guys are well trained.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Loving the ignorance... !

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Mizuame - You can ask the chef to leave enough toxin in for your lips to start to tingle. These guys are well trained.

I believe this is an "urban legend". As I understand, no licensed chef would take such an illegal risk. Many people who claim to have felt a tingling sensation have been said to imagining it, or it  comes from the sake or vinegar or other ingredients.

"..... The famed sushi chef Yitaka Sasaki told the Los Angeles Times that the notion of fugu making a diner's lip number is a fallacy. “That's a lie," he said. “If you're eating fugu and your lips turn numb. You're well on way to being dead........"

1 ( +1 / -0 )

In Shimonoseki in Yamaguchi prefecture, after intestant is taken out, about one drum can full of water was used to wash edible part. Children and women were prohibited to go near. It was during WWII and we learned some wives use Fugu water to suicide when they received notice their husband were killed in War.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Saw on tv last night. The fugu flesh and liver parts were presented (slapped) on a styrene foam tray and looked about as appetizing as dish cloths.

Why on earth, if fugu is so valued, would it be sold like that?

And each to their own - but there's too many tasty fish / shellfish etc to delight over, than paying exorbitant prices for a pretty bland dish.

I've been treated on a number of occasions to a full fugu course (and been reminded each time that we Japanese don't waste anything of this special fish, so we even eat the bones and skin). I've enjoyed because I haven't paid - but no way does fugu beat imo, tai (sea bream), salmon, crab, scallops, flounder, whiting, lobster etc etc for a seafood gastronomic taste experience.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I scuba and love to swim with the little guys - they're all boxy with lil' helicopter-type fins and apparently aware of the danger they present so are absolutely fearless. A delightful little fish.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Hire zake = Great to drink on a cold winter's night.

With that said, Fugu meat is over rated IMO. Good, but over rated.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why bother warning and collecting them? If people want to play Russian Roulette with their dinner, let them and give them a real thrill!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

DisillusionedJan. 16 06:19 pm JST

They are a pest fish and the only reason they started to be eaten in Japan is because there were no other fish available during the winter months due to overfishing.

So they were "overfishing" 2000 years ago? LOL

"The inhabitants of Japan have eaten fugu for centuries. Fugu bones have been found in several shell middens, called kaizuka, from the Jōmon period that date back more than 2,300 years"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I don't think Abeand. his wife ever ate Fugu. They fell in love in Fugu city Shimonoseki..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Used to have this once a year with my family--a local Kobe restaurant that has since closed. Never did much for me. The fugu hirezake was especially vile.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Burakumin, try fugu nabe, with the fugu bought from Tsukiji. Its the best.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Had it twice. (Didn't pay either time:)

The fried karage portion of fugu tastes just like cod imo

The sashimi was very thin. We ended up scooping up 3 or 4 slices at a time.

The best was the sake drink that contained the fins and other indescribable parts.

Got wasted drinking that!

I wouldn't pay for it. Id rather have Yakiniku TBO.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I've had it plenty of times. When my wife and I first started dating, we went to a restaurant that had a Fugu course- Fugu Miso Soup and Fugu sashimi as well as Fugu skins as an Otoshi-mono, finally followed by Fugu Nabe. I agree with some of the above posters. It was absolutely delicious!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The fugu's revenge.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

You can ask the chef to leave enough toxin in for your lips to start to tingle.

I thought the tingly lips thing was a myth. I vaguely remember a TV show from a few decades ago where they got celebrities to test some fish dishes of which some were fugu and some a similarly textured fish (monkfish perhaps). It seemed the tingly sensation was a result of the spices (ichimi, shichimi) and vinegar added to the dips and sauces.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I would never eat it, not worth the risk.

I've had it. It's a little sketchy. I'm actually not a big seafood guy, but it was surprisingly tasty.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Sorry... it's not that delicious to begin with. It's not bad, but not at all worth the cost despite what people will tell you.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Ah, Fugu! I think its smelly and disgusting. The fried tempura style fillets are the best, but you can still taste that dirty 'fugu' flavor. When I was a kid growing up on a salt water lake we used to catch them as by-catch. The smell is something that is permanently in my memory and I cannot eat it. They are a pest fish and the only reason they started to be eaten in Japan is because there were no other fish available during the winter months due to overfishing.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Usually all fugu have to be sent to Yamaguchi for preparation.

as a vegetarian. Who sometimes eats fish. I love it so much! But no money...

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Why play Russian roulette when you eat?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

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