Archive for sushi

Sawa (Bay Area) – Sashimi Heaven

Tucked along a particularly post-modern stretch of Silicon Valley,1 Sawa sits next to a Subway with its shades drawn, lights dimmed, and a Closed sign that pauses even the most intrepid eaters. Circumstance or calculation, the anti-business practices have fed into the mythology of this most incongruous of American fine dining restaurants. All is not what it seems in Santa Clara. Sitting down, the Sapporo-branded laminated sushi menu greets you with cross-cultural irony – or test. California roll?

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Sawada (Tokyo) – Redux & Reloaded

There are meals where every bite is a revelation, old world views crumble, and life takes on new meaning – the pursuit is pushed forward and there are new realms to explore. It is magical when it happens, smiles everywhere, but time, and continued avocation, often cruelly reveal the legitimacy of those epiphanies – there are few – and what was once the culminate becomes the stepping stone – local maxima. Sushi was one of those first gateways for me – I thought I knew sushi – I still don’t – but nothing I’ve had1 compares to the Sawada meal below.

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Sushiso Masa (Tokyo) – A Feast of Fish

Sushiso Masa1 opened one of those rare doors that change outlooks and paradigms – a glimpse into the impossible. It was very much a Plato’s Cave, or Matrix, moment – the jaded diner experiencing life. How could the top tier be mere local maxima? The potential was inconceivable. The results were astounding. And, then, to think there were others, possibly better, in this town? The city was ripe for more exploration.

One year later, a few weeks further in the season, the results were no less enchanting. When you look at man through food, his limits might be revealed by his best pieces of sushi.

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Sawada (Tokyo) – There are only Two Stars in Heaven

It is the Holidays, a new project is in the air, blog posts are backlogged, and life could not be busier. This post is basically another teaser but I hope the pictures 1 entice and inspire. The pictures document most of the meal but I was asked to stop when another party walked in.

I will have a lot more to say about this meal – when the post for my second meal comes out. For now, I will say “I have had none better.” I must thank my virtual friend Cathy Ho for bringing this restaurant to my attention 2 over a year ago.

It is a temple – that is ridiculously expensive – and it is absolutely worth it.

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Sawa (Sunnyvale, CA) – The Sashimi Club

Sawa – it is one of the most incongruous high-end dining experiences in America – located in Sunnyvale (re: nowhere) in a strip mall (re: next to Subway.) Menus and prices are not offered, merely discovered. The place settings, irony at its finest, depict the typical pieces of nigiri – none of which will be served. The fish, of the highest quality available in America, can come in such large quantities that one wonders if the ocean might just quit after the meal. The naysayers decry that Sawa strokes its customers’ unchecked egos but, masters of the universe or not, the regular patrons merely celebrate the brilliant seafood hidden beyond that neon Sawa sign.

Raw Scottish lobster, killed seconds before serving

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