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Sushi Tomi (Mountain View) and Gizzard Shad

jack | Feb 10, 2006 12:52 PM

I visited Sushi Tomi last night and decided to go with Omakase as a few items on the “special” menu seem interesting. Unfortunately, I was somewhat famished, crowded by boisterous salarymen, and a bit short for time, so I did not catch the name of the many special fishes I had. Nevertheless, there were a few standout items:

1. Gizzard shad: this is the first time I’ve had this river fish. The meat was a blend of silkiness and flakiness, if that’s possible. The “muddy odor” I typically associate with river fish was distinctly absent, and the skin texture was shimmery; a feast to the eyes, I think.
2. The blue fin toro was a bit on the fatty side. Don’t get me wrong, I like my chu-toro, but this one made me feel like there was fish fat rolled by another layer of fish fat. The briny taste of the fish, however, counter-balanced the fat flavor.
3. I don’t know about you, but I’d have really liked it if my Omakase was presented with light flavored fish first before moving on to the heavier tasting pieces. My uni and toro came out in the middle of the procession, followed by a few lighter flavored river fishes. I supposed I could have used more ginger and o-cha to cleanse my palate, but I still wish I had that option of not having to do the equivalent of eating sorbet between each pieces in the later half of the procession.
4. I’m beginning to have a new found appreciation of uni. I don’t typically order it a la carte, but these guys typically show up in my Omakase arrangement. The uni at Sushi Tomi last night was very fragrant, but with just a tiny bit of fleeting metallic bitterness at the end, which really piqued up my taste bud. I only wished I had not swallowed the uni already when I found that flavor. It played with the creaminess of the uni perfectly.
5. I absolutely adore the tamago at Sushi Tomi. It’s consistently made really well. The texture is spongey, and the flavor subtle. I really think there’s some shrimpy flavor weaved into the omelet.
6. One bit of disappointment: I noticed that the rice in my nigiri’s kept falling apart. I don’t think it’s the sheer weight of the fish, nor the method of rice cooking. Rather, I am guessing the vinegar might have been liberally applied such that the stickness factor is reduced? It made for awkward eating. Not very sleek, to say the least, when rice bits were falling off my fingers when picking up the pieces.
7. I had chawan-mushi also, but it was not inspirational. So far, I’m still in search of memorable chawan-mushi’s in the bay area.



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