Crab Heaven


Once or twice a year, depending on the school, teachers plan and go on a… field trip of sorts. They can be to many different places, but they all seem to have one thing in common: they start in the morning with the attnending teachers boarding a bus and immediately passing around beers. I heard about these crazy adventures from a couple of other ALTs, and I finally got to go on a field trip last month! The destination was a place in Niigata Prefecture. The goal was to eat delicious, fresh crab!

As we walked up to the bottom floor of the building, we were greeted by tons of different types of fish, shrimp, clams, and CRABS. the cheapest I saw were around ¥2500 (~$25) while the most expensive were over ¥4000 for ONE. We eventually made our way up to the second floor and our lunch of crab.

We had to order in advance (we originally planned to do an all-you-can-eat, but after seeing the price, the organizing teachers decided to do something cheaper), and five minutes after sitting down, our dishes began to emerge from the kitchen.


My meal, called 網元御膳 (can kind of be translated into “meal for the head fisherman”), cost ¥3000 —  more money than I think I’ve ever spent on a single meal in my life. It came with: a whole crab,


a piece of baked fish,


marinated clam meat,


assorted sashimi,




This was actually my first time eating crab in like… 15 years… so I made a bit of a fool of myself as I tried to figure out how to eat it. Even so, it tasted amazing! Everything did! The sashimi was nice and fresh, the soup had the right amount of salt and had giant pieces of cabbage and tofu — even the clams, which I was a little worried about, tasted wonderful. While I was busy blundering around with my crab, some teachers had already finished and were… cracking open the shell to eat the organs. The teacher next to me kindly cracked mine open for me. I just stared at it. Sorry teacher, that’s a HARD PASS.

Stuffed with deliciousness, we walked along the market street a bit, some of us playing Pokemon Go, before boarding the bus and heading back to Nagano.

If you’re looking for fantastically fresh crab, I highly recommend this area! Even if you don’t eat at the restaurant I went to, you can still walk around and buy a single crab and cook it yourself if you want. As for the restaurant, I don’t believe there is an English menu, so I would also recommend you bring a Japanese friend along.
Categories: FoodTags: , , , , , ,

1 comment

  1. Wow, sounds awesome Jaye. Too bad my school doesn’t have teacher outings like yours does!


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