Everyone likes to spend an evening eating in a sushi restaurant once in a while on monthly basis. We usually can’t skip more than that. If it happens, we’d crave sushi madly, like being on a food drug addiction.
We excitedly gather our friends, our families, and our lovely ones, get together and go to eat sushi on one of the evening. And we always have this cheering moments on the table while drinking hot sake and biting pieces after pieces of delicious sushi.
Fresh sashimi and sushi roll served with special sauce that makes us go crazy all the time. The experience we’re having inside is just so amazing.
Unfortunately, that is all the expectations we have when we want to eat in a sushi restaurant. But the truth is, it’s not always the same all the time and perhaps you haven’t noticed any change until now that you’re reading this post. Talk about the chef, the price, the preparation, the ingredients, and the service and you will end up with various experiences from one restaurant to another.
Some restaurants turn out to be your favorite place to visit after you get hook on your first bite of the sushi, which is skillfully prepared by the chef and beautifully served by the waiters. That’s why you find yourself going back so often. Each visit gain you more trust on the restaurant and its sushi chef.
But there are some white lies that customers are not aware of because if they know about them, they probably will never encourage the place. Of course, sushi restaurant don’t want to lose a customer like yourself.
That is not good for business, right?
Here are the five big lies that sushi restaurants don’t want you to know. Read on so that you will be more careful the next time you visit a sushi restaurant.
Fresh Fish! That’s what a restaurant will always say about their offerings, but don’t bet your money on it as the fish are not ordered on a daily basis.
On delivery, after they receive fishes, most chefs prepare two batches of fish. The first batch will be frozen. It is certain that when this batch is defrosted, it compromises the quality of the fish. Bacteria may set in once a frozen food does not maintain its normal temperature unless it is cooked well.
But that is not what sushi is all about, right, since after all sushi is eaten raw. Restaurants freeze the fish because they do not want to run the risk of not having enough supplies on a busy day.
The second batch will be used on the first and succeeding days. So on the second and third day, the fish has lost its freshness. But still, customers have no way of telling if they are being sold these items unless they have discriminating tastes.
So the fish is not always fresh as they state it to be. It’s better that you ask them how often they get their fish supplies; delivery dates on a weekly basis. This way, you will know what day you should drop by and get to eat fresh fish.
Sushi lovers do not mind paying a steep price at a restaurant because they thought it costs a lot to make a sushi. They also think it must be expensive because the fish must be served fresh, the difficulty involved in finding the fish, and the other ingredients needed in the preparation. But the price is really ridiculous.
Of course, restaurant owners will tell you it is very expensive to make sushi. If you don’t know how much it costs to make a sushi roll, well it’s around 85 cents. A special sushi roll would go about 2 dollars on the maximum. The price of a pair of nigiris is just a couple cents only.
A special dish with simple ingredients accompanied with a sauce would cost you over 13 dollars. A salad with a few pieces of seafood sells for 18 dollars per plate. The sad truth is sushi restaurant owners are reaping more than 500-1000% of profit without the actual production costs.
No wonder they are so excited to see the big numbers on your bill after partaking of their sushi offerings. Just a word of advice: make sure the sushi you are eating is worth the money you are going to spend unless you are a very rich person who does not care and make no big deal of parting with your dollars.
But if you really think they are ripping you off, you might as well make your own sushi rolls at the comfort of your home.
Waiters will always try to raise your bills so that they can increase their tips by selling high value choices to you. If some waiters tell you that “this and that” is good and you should try it without offering much information, be wary because it only means he does not really know what he’s saying.
Other waiters will tell you a big story on one sushi, so that you will order it. The common trick is telling you a dish is very good, and if you are easily convinced, you will happily believe it and you will find yourself ordering it. Some will even try to persuade you to buy many things or at least an expensive item from the menu. However, you might get disappointed in the end.
Remember that waiters don’t make much money since they are paid by the hours. They rely more on the tips to increase their salary. So they are very enthusiastic to sell you whatever they think is good for both of you.
There are chefs who pretend to know everything about the fish, the product, and the process on how they work in a restaurant. Well, don’t be misled because some of them are lying to you.
The truth is that they are not motivated to find the time to study what they are actually preparing for you. Sadly, they do not care. They are just employees working only for the money. It will be very rare if you find chefs who are passionate about their work.
Often, chefs gain their knowledge through the number of years they work in a sushi restaurant. Some of them did not attend a form of institution to study about sushi making.
Even some chefs with over 20 years of experience have never really thought of getting an education to boost their knowledge about sushi. If a chef is mumbling about things or is not even completely sure of the language related to sushi preparation, they don’t know what they are talking most probably.
Seeing a chef in action when he rolls, cuts, slices, and decorates the sushi, would probably tell how great on what he is doing. Better ask them too how many years of experience they have in the field. Don’t be surprised if most of them will bloat their experience. They just want to get your attention and respect so that you can trust them.
You can validate his claims by being mindful of the following:
- Is the area he’s working on is clean at all time?
- Does he look and sound professional enough?
- Is he using or cleaning his tools properly after each use?
- Is the sushi he is making looks good and appealing?
- Watch him at work and try to fill in the answers on the above and you can already tell whether he is telling the truth about his experience. Great chefs are always aware of what they are doing no matter how busy they are in the kitchen. Also, chefs project a calm attitude that assures you they are focused on what they are doing.Additional questions that will help you determine a chef’s experience are:
- Do they sharpen their knives on specific way?
- Do they know the things that make good sushi rice?
- Do they know what qualifies a good quality salmon by just looking at it?
It will be helpful to remember that there are many types of rock made for specific kinds of metal. Wise chefs know about the specific rock that matches their knives.
Another thing is the way chefs cook the sushi rice. If they can’t tell you about the importance in balancing rice and water, they really do not know how to cook good sushi rice.
There are multiple ways to see if a salmon is of good quality. This can be done not only by looking at the skin or the gills, but also from the fish meat and the eyes. If in a sushi bar, observe the salmon meat, its color, its firmness, and its smell.
Those are the five main five lies most of the sushi restaurant surely hide from you. The next time you feel like eating Japanese food and craving for that sushi, you know what to observe and what to ask. They may sound and look professional, but study more so you will separate the good restaurants from the bad ones.