Yakitori, Hinai-ya

Posted on Aug 13, 2012 in Hiroko's Blog

Hinai-ya is a good quality, reasonably priced yakitori restaurant to which I frequently go back on my visits to Tokyo, Japan. Hinai is the name of one of the towns in Akita Prefecture, northern part of main island of Japan. There they raise jidori called “hinai-dori”, which is a cross-breeding between native chicken and Rohde Island Red. Chickens are free-ranged in a grass field for 160 to 170 days until slaughter time. The meat of hinai-dori is noted with its lean but rich flavor and pleasantly firm texture (not tough).

There are over 50 certified jidori brands raised all across Japan. The most famous names are Ninai Jidori from Akita Prefecture, Nagoya Kochin from Aichi Prefecture, and Satsuma Jidori from Kagoshima Prefecture. Each of these birds is notable for its own distinctive flavor and texture.