I love sushi!
Big deal, who doesn’t? But I really, really love good sushi and frankly, that’s very difficult to find. I’ve eaten a lot of sushi around here and I have yet to find anything that’s better than just average. Now don’t get your panties all in a bunch, Jeez! That’s my opinion, and anyway, if you’ve ever had really quality sushi (and I’m talking about sushi that has been prepared with a fish that was caught the morning of the evening that you ate it), then you’ll know what I’m talking about. However, just because that’s what I prefer, it doesn’t stop me from eating the average sushi you can get around here. So why would I eat the so-called average stuff then, you ask? For only one reason. Okay two reasons: the sauce and the dipping. I love the act of preparing my own wasabi soy dipping sauce in those adorable little dishes, and how I can mix it to my own specifications, which is to inflame my sinuses and obtain a head spin for that brief 4 seconds before it all melts away in my mouth, leaving the fresh, leafy flavor of the wasabi, post-heat, and I love the act of using my chopsticks to grasp that delicate piece of sushi, carefully dip it into my concoction, and eat it in one go.
Anyway, since I can’t find my ideal sushi, I’m always searching for the next best thing: my ideal wasabi. As you may already know, the longer wasabi sits around after it’s been mixed, the more it starts to lose it’s potency, aroma and delicate flavor. I have enjoyed the youthful exuberance of bright green, freshly mixed wasabi that does it’s spectacular little dance in my mouth, and I have endured the mid-life crisis wasabi that lifts it’s leg to pee, but nothing comes out. Luckily, I’ve finally found my Ideal-Average-Sushi-With-Spectacular-Wasabi sushi place: Sumo Sushi in Newbury Park. I was taken there by The Twin Sisters, Carmen and Rikki, (who wore the same top that night) and knew about Sumo’s late-night happy hour, which is the next best thing after regular happy hour because you can get discounted prices on some of their sushi and drinks from 8:30 to 10:30 pm. Seems like I’m the only who didn’t know about it though because the place was packed and there was a 20 minute wait. Once we got seated, a very nice server came to our table right away and took our order. Since I’m such a sushi snob, I skipped the raw stuff and went for the exotic California Roll (you may have heard of it). It was made with the fishy-tasting fake crab mix that I’m not crazy about, but I absolutely fell in love with their fresh wasabi and I fell in love with them for having it, even though they were trying to kill me with the stuff. It was divinely head-spinning! The rice on my roll was seasoned perfectly, the ginger was crisp, and they had the nice bamboo chopsticks that are pointed at the ends. To top it all off, we were being entertained by their sake-imbibing sushi chef doing impressions of Scooby Doo. Don’t you just love the quirkiness of the Japanese? “Sensei, anata no chimei-tekina wasabi o arigatō gozai mashitá!”
1714 Newbury Rd., Suite C
Newbury Park, CA