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Celebrity Clients: Tetsuya Wakada, By Craig McGill

Tetsuya Wakada, By Craig McGill

 I was lucky enough to spend a day in February fishing with my mate , internationally renowned chef Tetsuya Wakuda. Tets has spent the last year setting up his new restaurant Waku Ghin in Singapore so it had been a while since we had a chance to catch up. We kicked off the evening before with dinner at Sydney's best Japanese restaurant Azuma , leading to a somewhat hazy 6.30am start at double bay wharf the next morning where we were joined by Tets mates Colin and Sanae.

The action was nonstop. Moving straight to Rushcutters bay we found acres of bonito and their tropical brothers Watsons leaping bonito. After a couple of hours on them we decided to move to north harbour where we had been told that there were big schools of Mac tuna working the surface. 
On the way down we were diverted by a couple of big schools of rat kings working on top in tailors bay and after landing a few fish decided to move on as Tets really wanted some Macs for the table.
North harbour was indeed alive with Mac tuna , a rare sight in Sydney and courtesy of an unseasonal warm current running at 25 degrees. At about 3kg they were awesome fun on light spinning gear and we took half a dozen before deciding it was time for some serious kingies.
Squid , for bait , are a mandatory first stop before any king fishing session and we managed to boat about 10 easily from quarantine and Neilson Park.
The action at ‘old yella' ( a yellow navigation marker off Neilson park) was hot and instant with kings scoffing every squid that hit the water. The first couple of fish were undersized but as the frenzy got going the size crept up . We managed to take home 4 between 90cm and a meter and got busted up by a few that were considerably bigger.
For Tetsuya the fishing experience is divided into two equal parts -- catching and cooking. However the line between the two is not as clear cut as it might sound and one transitions seamlessly into the other. Preparation of the fish, so important to Japanese style cooking, starts the instant the fish is boated. The fishing banter, recollections of the days sport, including exaggerations bordering lies, merge smoothly with the first round of entre' and chardonnay. A days ‘fishing' for Tets often turns into a 16 hour event and he draws no clear distinction of importance between the time on the water and time at the dinner table - they are an inseparable package. It's an attitude that carries a deep appreciation and respect of the individual fish and the magnificent harbour that provided them. It also sheds new light on species traditionally considered, by Australians, to be second and even third rate eating quality. These perceived low grade eating species , affectionately collectively known as mother-in-law fish , are generally the aftermath of our lazy, unimaginative cooking styles (my words , not Tets) and an inability to recognize the huge variation in flesh characteristics between species. We don't treat beef, pork and chicken all the same so why do we assume we can do it with seafood. 
The Mac tuna we caught were consumed that evening but the kingfish were committed to 24-36 hours cold storage , to be 'hung' for much the same reason as we would with beef. Tets prefers to ‘age' or ‘relax' the kingfish whether it be destined for sashimi or cooking.
In general, it has long been my belief, that we over-cook nearly all our seafood.

Interview with Tets.
1. First fishing memory & with who

Hamana Lake, where I was born, catching Gobi/Haze by myself as a child.

2. Most memorable fishing experience

Catching record size kingfish with Craig McGill off Watson's Bay.

3. Best location you have ever fished & why

Sydney Harbour - for its beauty, clear water, peacefulness and view of our city from the water.

4. What species do you most enjoy targeting

Leatherjacket, trevally & mac tuna, our harbour is almost like a fish market, so many species.

5. What's the one fishing location you want to fish before you die

The Amazon & catch piranha, it fascinates me. 
Blue fish tuna off Tasmania.

6. Best species to cook with

Tuna- it is so versatile.

7. How did you prepare /cook the mac tuna that we caught

Tataki style - skin side rubbed with salt , grilled and served with a dressing for dipping with soy, touch of mirin, grated ginger & garlic & a small amount of orange zest.



Stuart Reid's 50lb Pending World Record PNG Black Bass

Pending World Record Black Bass

Papuan Black Bass are renowned the world over as the toughest pound for pound freshwater fish in the world, and the place to find the biggest Black Bass is PNG's Gulf province. The current all tackle world record Black Bass of 46lbs, and the fish pictured (caught on 19/6/14, by Stuart Reid, Fishabout) which is the pending world record at 50lbs, were both caught from these rivers.

Once you feel the strike you know that no freshwater fish can come close to the power. Watching 100kg guys get knocked over on the strike, reels give way, rods break in half and 130LB pound braid snap from the pound for pound strongest fighting fresh water fish is a sight to behold. If would like to experience the thrill of targeting PNG Black Bass and Barramundi in remote areas with very low fishing pressure contact us now. *2017-18 spots selling now* ... read more

Kadavu Island - Great Astrolabe Reef

Fiji Macky

The pristine Fiji Islands are home to the South Pacific's finest sport and game fish, including massive GT's, monster dogtooth tuna, yellowfin tuna, dolphin fish, wahoo, spanish mackerel, black marlin, blue marlin and plenty of reef fish. Many of these species are endemic to the Great Astrolabe Reef (one of the largest barrier reefs in the world), which is the reef that encompasses Kadavu Island, Fiji.Fishabout now offer 6 and 8 day fishing packages to explore this marine wonder of the world, which include 3 and 5 days fishing respectively. For more information call us on (02)8922 2651 or click here

Endyalgout Remote Fishing Camp

Sunset at Endyalgout

Fishabout is pleased to now offer remote fishing trips to Endyalgout Island, one of the best fishing locations in Australia. (Nestled on the south east of the Coburg Penninsula).

Situated on a shell grit beach under shady trees, are several permanent tropical friendly safari style tents, raised on wooden platforms.

Looking out past the resident Crocodile you can see miles and miles of enticing mangroves, barely touched creeks, rivers, rock bars and channels, all calling your name.

From monster Baramundi up to 130cm, to big Black Jewfish, Threadfin Salmon, various Trevallies, and some of the biggest Golden Snaper to be found anywhere, Endyalgout Island is truly a dream to fish.

Pricing ranges from $4350 (4 days, 3 anglers per boat) to $6910 (7 days, 2 anglers per boat)

For more information please call us on (02) 8922 2651 or click here