ASUKA Restaurant specializes in its namesake hotpot dish called the Asuka nabe. It is a hotpot dish dating back over 1,300 years to the Asuka period of Japanese history and originates from the ancient capital city of Nara. It is considered to be one of the earliest Japanese hot pot dishes. The dish is said to have been first made by a monk using milk, honey, and miso; ingredients that were considered to be extravagant and luxurious at that time period. The modern version of that hotpot served at Asuka restaurant incorporates chicken broth and kombu seaweed to those classic ingredients. The Asuka nabe has been passed down through the millennia and is considered a local hometown dish in now parts of Nara.
Beyond its namesake dish, AsukaNabe + Shabu Shabu also prides itself in a large variety of hand-made soup broths and selections of meats and vegetables. With 16 different types of hand-made soup broths, 15 types of Shabu Shabu sets, 6 types of Nabe, and over 60 different side menu items; the variety of flavors and hot pot experiences are vast. Chef Ikeguchi also takes incredible care in personally selecting and purchasing his meats, seafood, and produce; this personal attention to each ingredient can be time consuming given the size of the menu, but it is now part of his daily ritual to insure that only the freshest seasonal ingredients are served.