Kusaya. The fish that’s made from marinating a fresh fish in kusaya-eki, fermented fish broth known for extracting the umami from fish with an activating enzyme. Traditional cuisine from Izu Island, kusaya has become synonymous with funk. Not the rich beats and slaps of a bass funk; instead, kusaya comes from the word meaning stench in Japanese and it lives up to its name.
And, there’s only one specialized kusaya bar in Japan, which will open in Ikebukuro.
AIGAE KUSAYA BAR offers dishes such as Kusaya Cream Cheese Dip Seaweed, Kusaya Ahijo arranged with food to compliment its flavor. Try it with tequila or wander into the funk with wine. Pairing kusaya can be a treat. The cream cheese dip uses Iburigakko, a smoked daikon radish pickle. With the funky fragrance of kusaya, the dish tastes a little like potato salad. We recommend this for your first dish. The Kusaya Ahijo offers a rich combination of kusaya and garlic harmonized for the most discerning of palates.
Straight kusaya, aged raw kusaya, and hachijomuraaji kusaya marinated in kusaya-eki for two days for the richest umami. The soft texture and rich flavor are a fantastic mach for Japanese sake.
Every dish is from Hachijo Island. Also, the store extracts salt to take away the sharp taste from marinating in kusaya-eki. Doing this results in a more pleasant smelling kusaya.