Americans love sushi, with a 62% said they tried a version of the Japanese dish which can vary from slices of the freshest raw fish, called sashimi, to maki rolls containing cooked or raw fish and vegetables. Some restaurants even serve Buns filled with ingredients like beef and cheese! But many fail to spot the red flags that signal a restaurant doesn’t have the freshest of ingredients.
When you’re looking for a fun night out, sushi often tops the list, but how do you know you’re getting the best? freshest seafood and the most creative dishes? We asked chefs with sushi and seafood experience what they were looking for in a Sushi restaurant, and what makes them run the other way. Some of these chef tips are common sense, but others might really surprise you!
Lack of staff training
The people who prepare your food and serve you should know what’s on your plate, he says Nana DarkwahOcean Hai’s senior sous chef Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach.
“The biggest warning sign of a sushi restaurant is the staff and chefs who have no idea what products they carry or where they source them,” explains Darkwah. “Staff and chefs should always know what they are serving and be able to talk to them and educate guests. Especially when a sushi chef is inexperienced, this is another flag, which he has to pay attention to because he doesn’t have the knowledge to pass on to his employees.”
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Sushi should be made within sight
You want to see how your food is prepared says Big Night Regional Chef Jim Lamwho declares, “Avoid sushi that is not prepared in front of the guests. The fish should be proudly displayed to showcase the bright colors and variety on offer. Any sushi you can buy without seeing how it’s made is most likely not fresh. Supermarket sushi, while very convenient and popular, is not very good sushi. Any restaurants that prepare sushi in the back kitchen should also be avoided.”
Watch out for a dirty show cage
Most sushi places have a bar where the chefs prepare the rolls, and the seafood is often displayed in a glass cage. Darkwah says to check the cage for cleanliness.
“Another red flag is if the restaurant isn’t clean or the display cage is dirty, it should never be, especially when handling raw fish,” she told us. “You can tell a lot about a sushi place by the type of fish in the display case, and serving cheap sushi means the product you’re getting isn’t good or sushi quality.”
Fresh fish on display
Although this may seem obvious, Iverson GuoChef and owner of Karma Asian Fusionnotes a distinction for fish on display.
“When I’m looking for sushi restaurants, I want to see fresh fish on display,” says Guo. “But only one portion of fish, not too much – I want to see the right product rotation to ensure freshness.”
Test your fish for mushyness
This one’s pretty basic and should send you out the door if the fish isn’t up to scratch, he says chef and blogger Timothy Woods.
“A person can tell if their sushi is bad or not by gently pressing their finger on a piece of fish, and if the fish feels mushy, that means the restaurant is serving stale fish,” Woods said.
Ask when the fish came
William Mackchef and editor ambition in the kitchenshares some of our favorite advice at many restaurants, which is to ask questions.
“Do you know when the fish came in? Especially when your favorite sushi place is far from shore, it’s important to know when the fish came in,” says Mack. “Ask the waiter. That’s a softball question, and an especially important one if you’re eating raw catch. Most reputable establishments get fish delivered every day or two. If the front desk staff can tell you where the fish came from, where it came from and maybe even how it was caught, then you know you’re in good hands.”
Sushi is better on the coasts
We can’t argue with the chef Came Talebi the butcher story on this one. The closer you are to the sea, the better the quality of the fish. That goes for any seafood restaurant, but it’s a good one
“Fish quality in the middle of the country will be inconsistent,” says Talebi. “Better options will become more readily available on the coast. Don’t hold Minneapolis to impossible standards, but don’t settle for less either. Just wait until you visit the coast to get your sushi.”
Look out for unique menu items
Sushi chef Guo tells us he’s looking for something different and creative, stating, “In sushi restaurants, going beyond the basics will really show the authenticity and give consumers more choices. For example, when I go to a sushi restaurant and I see unique rolls or dishes that are considered a delicacy, like fresh uni from Japan, I know I’m in good hands. The food has to be both visually and tastefully appealing.”
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Is the restaurant manned during peak hours?
Guo also notes – and this is true of almost every restaurant – if it’s not busy during lunch or dinner, it’s probably not good. “When I go to a sushi restaurant and don’t see a lot of customers at a time when it’s usually busy, I’m skeptical – even more skeptical when I see a lot of sushi in display cases. Not fresh!”
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/9-sushi-restaurant-menu-red-162848574.html 9 Red Flags on a Sushi Restaurant Menu You Should Make Running