Fukagawa Meshi: Rice with Clams and Broth, a Traditional Dish of Tokyo


What is Fukagawa-meshi (深川めし)?

“Fukagawa-meshi” is a local dish originating from the Fukagawa area of Tokyo, which includes today’s Monzen-Nakacho (門前仲町), Kiyosumi-Shirakawa (清澄白河), and Kiba (木場) areas. It has been recognized as one of the 100 local dishes by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries.

The Fukagawa area once flourished as a fishing town, and many fishermen lived in the area to gather seafood and nori (seaweed) for Edomae sushi. Shellfish was a familiar food for people living in the area at that time, especially as clams and oysters were often harvested.

Fukagawa fishermen are said to have eaten rice with boiled shellfish in salted water, or rice in a simple broth containing clams, green onions, and tofu. This “fisherman’s meal combining shellfish and rice” evolved into a style in which clams (asari) were added to miso or soy sauce based broth to bring out the flavor, and then poured over white rice. This is the origin of Fukagawa-meshi.

Fukagawa-meshi has gradually faded from existence since the early Showa period, when land reclamation of Tokyo Bay began. Recently, however, the number of restaurants offering Fukagawa-meshi has increased and it is now recognized as a local dish in Tokyo.

Two styles to eat: “bukkake” and “takikomi”

Actually, there are two types of Fukagawa-meshi: bukkake and takikomi.

Bukkake: sprinkled over rice

Bukkake has its origin in fisherman’s meal. Fresh clams are added to a miso or soy sauce-based broth, simmered slightly, and pouring over white rice.

Takikomi: cooked with rice

Takikomi, on the other hand, is cooked rice with clams. It is said that takikomi appeared after the Meiji period (1868-1912) and was created so that carpenters and other craftsmen could take it with them for lunch. Although takikomi came into being later, it became popular as a home-cooked meal and was known as “mother’s taste”.

Let’s Go Eat Butadon!

This time I, the editor, visited “Fukagawa Kamasho (深川釜匠)”

  • Fukagawa Kamasho is a restaurant where you can enjoy Fukagawa-meshi and Fukagawa-don (rice bowl), Edo’s specialty!
  • Accessible within a 3-minute walk from Kiyosumi-Shirakawa Station.
  • The menu includes Fukagawa-meshi and Fukagawa-don (rice bowl) as well as set menus, and foreign language menus are also available.
  • Fukagawa-meshi is rice cooked with clams and full of flavor.
  • Fukagawa-don is a rice bowl topped with green onion and clams in a special broth.
  • Recommended for lunch during a stroll in Kiyosumi-Shirakawa area!
Fukagawa meshi: 1,190 yen

This time, I ordered Fukagawa-meshi, which is takikomi-gohan (cooked rice)! The set comes with oshinko (pickles), miso soup, and small side dish (kelp).

The rice is cooked with shimeji mushrooms and clams, topped with spring onions and nori. Everywhere you eat, there are plenty of asari clams, and their flavor is superb! The taste is gentle, and the broth is amazing.

There were two kinds of oshinko: shoga (ginger) and takuan (pickled daikon radish). Additionally, there was plenty of kelp in a small dish, which goes well with Fukagawa meshi.

*Please note that information and prices listed are subject to change.

4 Recommended Restaurants

Fukagawa Kamasho (深川釜匠)

Fukagawa Taro (深川太郎)

Monzenchaya (門前茶屋)

Kappou Miyako (割烹みや古)

Editor’s Comment


There are restaurants that offer only “bukkake” or “takikomi” and others that offer both types, so be sure to research the restaurant of your choice and enjoy it ✨

For those who want to know more about local gourmet foods in Tokyo

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