Don't worry: you don't have to bring your own pole.

Jillian Kramer
June 13, 2017

It could be said that the whole point of eating out is so that you don't have to lift a finger to enjoy your dinner—well, other than lift your hand to eat and, later, to sign the check, of course. But a new-to-New-York-City restaurant will ask customers to really work for their food—as in, fish for it. At Zauo, a Tokyo-based chain, patrons can grab a fishing pole and reel in one of several types of fish, then relax as a chef prepares the fresh catch.

The restaurant is already a hit across Japan, and the chain has been searching for a site in New York City for at least two years, its vice president told VICE. The new location will open at 152 West 24th Street in Chelsea. The restaurant will feature the chain's signature "boat" seating—elevated tables surrounded by a moat filled with ready-to-catch fish. Of course, you don't have to reel in your own dinner. At this location, diners can move to the third floor, where fish and sushi will be served, sans actual fishing.

The benefit to fishing for your food—other than it sounding like fun—is that it will likely be cheaper than ordering off the already-caught menu. According to Zauo's website, "the regular price of a red-snapper is ¥3,360 [$30.50], but if caught it can be eaten for only ¥2,499 [$22.69]." The same goes for flounder and the other fish.

Once you've caught the fish of your choice—you're encouraged to target your prey, with helpful tips from the surrounding staff—you'll hand over your fresh catch with instructions for the chef on how to prepare it: sashimi, grilled, boiled, deep-fried, or sushi. You can even opt to have the fish prepared in two different ways for the same price.

There isn't a published date for the restaurant to open, but we're putting on our waders in anticipation.