Fugu" (blowfish) is well-known all over the world as an expensive and classy fish. Because it contains poison, only specially trained cooks with a license are allowed to make it. According to the government, 315 cases of poisoning by fugu occurred in Japan between 1996 and 2005, 31 of which were lethal. Many of these included amateur chefs trying to learn how to cook the fish. Nevertheless, Tokyo has many mass markets and elite restaurants serving this fish.
In the expensive venue, the cost of fugu dinner may reach $450. The cheaper and most popular style of fugu serving is the sashimi "fugu-sashi". The fish is being sliced so thin it is hardly visible. Sliced fugu is often styled in a shape to resemble a blooming flower.
The fugu season is the cold time of the year from October to March (sometimes available till April or even May), and the peak time is December to February. During this period many restaurants serve fugu.