Yamaguchi is known for its puffer fish! Though the best season is said to be during the cold period from November through February, this puffer fish sushi boxed lunch, which is sold at Shinyamaguchi train station, can be enjoyed year round!
The rather cute, round-shaped packaging is decorated with an illustration of a playful puffer fish! The name is written in hiragana characters so that it can also be read in a way that means not only “puffer fish” but also “good luck” (the two words sound the same, and are just written with a different character). Currently, the boxed lunches can only be bought at the shop in Shinyamaguchi train station.
I’m in the mood for traveling and enjoying my boxed lunch on the train. From Shinyamaguchi station I take the JR Sanyo Main Line. The yellow, retro-style train sits at the station for some time… I push the button by the door to open it, sit down in a seat for two, and hurry to open the lid…
Ta-dah! It’s a really colorful box of chirashizushi (sushi rice topped with various ingredients)! The toppings include 4 slices of sweet vinegar marinated puffer fish (on the left side you can see puffer fish skin). Other toppings include shrimp, soy sauce simmered shiitake mushroom, a mixture of chopped jellyfish and salted sea urchin, flying fish roe, and Chinese style seaweed on top of thinly sliced fried egg. I start by taking a bite of the puffer fish.
I can taste the vinegar in the firm meat. Its delicious, light flavor makes it easy to eat even on a train. I dip the second slice in the chopped jellyfish and sea urchin mixture.
The light puffer fish flavor combined with the rich umami of the sea urchin all mixed together – What a luxurious boxed lunch! Next I try the puffer fish skin.
It has a unique crunchy texture, and it makes me want to drink sake!
As the train rolls along through the Setouchi area, passengers get to enjoy a variety of scenery including the azure seas, blue skies, and rice fields.
Currently, this puffer fish sushi (Fuku sushi) is the only boxed lunch made using this Yamaguchi specialty, which is sold at train stations. Originally it was Shimonoseki’s local specialty boxed lunch, but together with the changing times and various other developments it is now sold only at Shinyamaguchi station. Let’s hope we can continue to enjoy this boxed lunch, the real pleasure of traveling, from here on, too!
Oidemase! Come to Yamaguchi
Fukusushi Hanbaiten (Puffer Fish Sushi Shop)
JR Shinyamaguchi station, shops on the 1st and 2nd floors
Location: 1294 Ogorishimogo, Yamaguchi city, Yamaguchi prefecture
Manufacturer: HIROSHIMA EKIBENTO CO., LTD.
The Setouchi Finder Editors
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