11 March 2013

Sushi Go Round

We will just call this place Sushi Go Round because I have no idea what the actual name of the place is.  This happens a lot with us Americans living in Japan not knowing how to understand the language.  But it doesn't prevent us from doing things and eating out.  Not at all! 

If you've been reading my other blog, Where in the World is Kacey?!? you'll have recently seen a post mentioning this place.  We've been here twice already, and it's been hard not to go back more often.
Sushi go rounds are a really fun way of dining and trying new things.  Neither Aaron nor I had ever been to one, but we were super excited to be moving to Japan and going to these all the time.  At this place, you can either sit at a booth with a table or the 'bar'.  This first time we sat at the bar.  All seats have access to the conveyor belt.  You are immediately served water and a cup for tea, and left on your own, unless you want something else to drink.  Matcha (green tea) powder is waiting for you at your seat in a little tin where you shake just a little into your mug.  A little goes a long way. I learned this.  Then...I think this is the coolest thing...you just press your mug into the little spout.  See it up there? The black round thing on the booth next to the napkins?  That's the hot water dispenser!!!  Built in!

At this point you can dive right in and start pulling plates off the conveyor belt.  The sushi chefs are in the middle preparing everything, and there are typically 2 pieces per plate, and each plate is color coded according to price.  Prices here range from 100 yen to 580 yen, or thereabouts.  If what is on the conveyor belt doesn't suit your fancy, you can also order off the menu, writing down (in Kanji) what you want and how many.  It doesn't seem that hard, and it's kind of fun trying to copy down symbols you've never really looked at before.  Aaron was better at this because he had learned a lot of Kanji and practiced writing it.  So even if he couldn't translate it, it was still a little familiar to him.  There were a few things I didn't order this time because of how complicated the Kanji was.  But we'll just have to keep going back until I decided to take the time to write it!

So...wanna see some of the things we ordered?  Of course you do!

Aarons new favorite dish....Pressed Mackerel.  He had all of these on me this time, but when we went back I tried it, and I can only describe it as a solid piece of fish.  Not only is the texture a thick piece of fish, the taste is undeniably fish from the ocean.  You bite into it and you are like, "Now THAT is a piece of fish".  I know that sounds really stupid, but that's the only way we could figure out how to describe it.  It was really good, and we'll be eating tons of it while we are here.  Oh, I could also describe it as if I picked up a whole fish and just bit into it, that's what I would expect.  Thumbs up from us!
 My favorite, Hotate.  Scallops.  A lot of time in the states, you'll get a chopped up scalloped rolled up and disguised.  I often wondered if it was really scallop.  But these.  These are scallops!  I wanted to order a dozen of them...but I settled with 2 orders so I could keep room for more.
Uni, or sea urchin.  Probably not something to order here. I've had it before, and it is a weird texture thing that most people don't enjoy.  I usually skip it altogether and go for something else awesome.
 Mussels.  This was interesting, in a good way!  I was concerned that they were dried out, but once I bit into them, they were really juicy and mussely!
 This is one of my favorite things here.  Between the scallops and this salmon, I wouldn't need to order anything else.  This is slices of salmon with shredded white onion and green onion on top.  It's a great combination!
 And this...geez...I can't remember what this was.  Probably because it wasn't something I ordered, but was delivered.  Fine with me!  It was shrimp with some sort of barbecue style sauce.  It was good, nothing special though. I'd much rather another plate of scallops!
And here we have our stacks of plates (from 3 people).  You just keep on stacking them in front of you until you are ready to leave.  This helps you keep track of how much you are spending, because it is so easy to just keep ordering plate after plate after 100th plate!!!  When you're done, just get up and the waitress will know you're ready to pay.  She'll come over with what looks like a bar code scanner, and she just scans the dishes from bottom to top.  Each plate has a chip in it to tell how much it cost.  She'll walk back over the to register and you pay there.  The whole thing is very fun. For those 3 stacks of plates down there, I think we spent around $50.
We've already been back to this place for lunch, and I know we'll be regulars here.  I'll follow up with a post to show you how we order off the menu!

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