Madai | Genuine Tai, Genuine Japanese Snapper, Red Seabream

Average: 2 (1 vote)
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Name Red Seabream
Other name Genuine Tai, Genuine Snapper,
Misslabeled to Caribbean red snapper, crimson snapper, goldbanded jobfish,ocean perch, porgy/seabream, spotted rose snapper, tilapia, tilefish, white bass
Other similar fish name (incorrect) Red Snapper
Latin name Pagrus Major
Japanese name 真鯛 - madai / Tai
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordata
Class Actinopterygii
Order Perciformes
Family Sparidae
Species P. major
Genus Pagrus
Suborder Percoidei
Superfamily Percoidea

Flavor & Texture
Madai is watery, clean, delicate sweet aroma. It has pretty traslucent and light color meat. The meat has sweet and fibery texture. It might has a note such as lime, herbs on meat.

Chefs may vary the way they present Madai by aging them. Put in refrigerator will change the texture to softer, more fishy and stronger flavor.

Farm madai tastes lighter compare to wild madai.

It means "celebration fish", "king of white fish", or "congratulations". One of the luxury fish in Japan. It might confuse with red snapper, sea bream in US.

It is not easy to find this fish. They are slow-growing fish who can live until 60 years. It might be available year around, however, it is rare. It is the reason why New Zealand starts to farm this fish. Wild madai can be found around Northwest Pacific - South China sea to Japan. Can be caught by single rod. The size is between 2.2 - 6.6 lbs

Sushi Preparation
It is very challenging process to take out the bone, scales, skin, and head. Some chefs agree that there is a poison on top fin. Madai's top fin is very sharp. There are many ways to prepare the madai. It is including slightly boiled skin side (matsugawa tsukuri), and infused with wet kelp (kobijime). Other than traditional way to prepare, there are many modern techniques to prepare this fish as well. Smoked or slightly seared with sea salt are famous to prepare this. Splash the skin side with extremely hot sesame oil is a very modern way.

It has high amino acid glycine, good omega-3, less fat.


Nutrition Fact 100 grams +3.5 oz
Calories 218
Protein (g) 44
Fat (g) 3
Saturated fat (g) 1
Sodium (mg) 140
Cholesterol (mg) 81
Potassium (mg) 909
Source of information:

Wikipedia, myfitnesspal, zen of fish


Wild Madai. 15east, NYC.

Madai in two ways; plain and with kelp (konbujime). Shizuoka Gourmet Madai Wild vs farm. True World Foods. Madai sperm/egg. Very expensive.Shizuoka Gourmet

A tiny note:

The review about the taste above is a general review. There is no fish taste the same. The weather, size, quality, the source of the fish and how the sushi chef prepare them are important aspects to the taste and texture. We try to write as accurate as possible. Therefore, we are looking forward to the reader to participate in the discussion/comment to add/adjust/revise those review. Please mention when, where and specific detail how you review the fish.