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markovitch

[PDX] SUSHI BATTLE.... FIGHT!

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so I'm not much of a sushi fan, but i'd like to hear opinions of PDX joints. I've been to some of them, all in SE:

Saburos

Mio Sushi

Yokos.

where else is good?

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I was tempted to do a similar post. I'm not much of a sushi fan either, but in the last year the number of sushi places in my neighborhood -- Cascade Park area of Vancouver -- has exploded. There may be 8 or more places serving sushi within a mile of me.

Has anyone tried these? I think I need to do a sushi survey of the best places in Portland and then go hit a bunch of these places just to know. They seem to be mostly populated by Asians.

What are the litmus tests for sushi?


Edited by ExtraMSG (log)

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What are the litmus tests for sushi?

other than fresh ingredients (fish is pretty easy in PDX) i think the rice is the best indicator. a good test is Whether the rice is well made, and the right kind. Tani's (woodstock and 49th, RIP) made good sushi but towards the end they started using really cheap rice. you could really tell.

oh... another good one is to go in and sit at the bar. if the chef's knife skills don't boggle your mind, i'd leave.

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I think a good indicator of a good place comes down to both the fish and the rice. Sushi grade fish is expensive and then you don't usually use all the meat for sushi, some is better suited for being minced for rolls. A lot of these cheap places with huge portions are using both lower grade fish and the lesser cuts for their nigiri and sashimi, which I would rather not bother with. The quality of the rice is important too, but so is the craftsmanship involved in making the sushi. It shouldn't be sloppy or fall apart when you pick it up. The rice should have a nice texture, be well seasoned, and you should be able to get the piece to your mouth (with hands or chopsticks) without fish sliding off or nori coming undone, etc. Bigger isn't necessarily better. All that being said, a Japanese colleague loves Saburo because it's huge and cheap and completely unlike anything you'd find in Japan... OTOH, I have friends from Tokyo I'd never take there because they'd hate it.

I think Syun and Murata are the best places for sushi in Portland. I've had some really cosmic stuff that wasn't sushi at Murata too (Matsutake soup...heaven) but it's very pricey and I wish you could place your sushi order directly with the sushi chef instead of having it translated to him by the waitstaff. If you sit at he bar and make an effort, you actually can communicate, even if it means using lots of hand gestures.

regards,

trillium

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markovitch,

I understand that Tani's is coming back. It will be in the same location. The building they were in is gone and a nice new 3 unit building has been built there. In the other 2 units I have heard that there are going to be an all organic brewpub (can't remember the name but there is another one in the Hollywood District) and possibly a <yuk> Starbucks.

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The Starbucks conspiracy theory holds a lot of water. I read once that they exclusively use UrbanWorks for development of new sites. And I've seen two other new Starbucks go up in the PDX area under the UrbanWorks banner.

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