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Food Hotategai (帆立貝)

Hotategai (帆立貝), or hotate (帆立), are scallops. They are common, relatively inexpensive, and delicious. Hotategai is usually best from late fall through early spring. Scallops have a soft texture and a mild, sweet flavour. They are excellent as sushi and sashimi. Hotategai can also be grilled or fried.


The Yesso scallop (Mizuhopecten yessoensis) is a cold-water marine bivalve species. Its valves have a convex centre and a smooth exterior shell. One side is white, and the other is dark brown. The Yesso scallop is widely distributed along the cold coast of Northern Japan. Scallop cultivation is located in the northern islands of Honshu and Hokkaido , with the Sea of Okhotsk, Saroma Lake and Funka Bay in Hokkaido accounting for more than 80% of the scallop production from 1991 to 2002.

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