Review: Nanami Sushi Bar (2nd Visit)

Posted by johngl

The past several weeks have involved a lot of travel for me so I haven’t had a lot of time to cook anything new and interesting. However, during one of my brief stints back in Austin, a friend phoned and we decided to get together at what is quickly becoming one of my favorite places to eat. The big win here is that it is close to home. It’s the Nanami Sushi Bar on Brodie Lane.

If you recall, this is the place where my most glorious spousal unit finally ate a piece of sashimi using chop sticks.  There has been no stopping her since. We ordered the same dish again, just for fun.

The Spice Girls

This is a dish that the folks at Nanami call the Spice Girls.  It’s hamachi (I think), topped with a round of jalapeño pepper and caviar.

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Review: Nanami Sushi Bar & Grill

Posted by johngl

At times, life can get exceedingly dangerous. Until now, going to get sushi and other Asian food was more of an event that we did on special occasions. That has come to an end.

Enter the Nanami Sushi Bar & Grill.  A few months ago, Nanami magically appeared in a small strip mall, along Brodie Lane, that I cruise by every weekday whilst on the way home from work.

Curiosity finally got the best of both of us and the most glorious spousal unit and I wandered in this afternoon for lunch.

Gyoza - Pan Fried Pork "dumblings"

These are Gyoza. Pork-filled and pan-fried, these little pot sticker kind of things are labeled as “dumblings” in the take-out menu. Dumbling or not, these are some of the tastiest I’ve had anywhere.  We opened the meal with them and closed the meal with another order.

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Nori Rolls

Posted by johngl

Since my Tyson Cole post, I’ve been wanting to get more experience with sushi style “cooking” and I thought that a Wine Salon event featuring German Rieslings was just the ticket. Nothing like embarrassing oneself in front of 30  people.

Nori Roll with Sockeye Salmon Belly, King Crab, Caviar, and Avocado
Nori Roll with Sockeye Salmon Belly, King Crab Leg, Avruga “Caviar”, and Avocado

But, with the last-minute help of my most glorious spousal unit, I survived it.

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Cooking Class with Chef Tyson Cole

Posted by johngl

What does this guy have to smile about?

A smiling Tyson Cole The answer? Everything.

Adding to his numerous other accomplishments, back in April, Cole’s Uchi came in at number eight in Bon Appétit’s listing of the the top ten sushi spots in America.  In 2005, he appeared as one of Food & Wine’s best new chefs.  Uchi has been such a huge success, he is opening another one near Austin’s Hyde Park neighborhood.  Further, he may open a Spanish-themed restaurant in the new W hotel, slated for completion sometime next year.

Lucky for me, I first met Chef Cole not long after Uchi first opened in 2003.  That was back when you could walk in nearly anytime and get a table immediately.  In fact, we had wine dinners there.  Eight to ten of us would get loud and boisterous and eat great dishes prepared by the master himself.  One of the most memorable dishes I have ever consumed was served at one of those dinners —  a monk fish liver preparation with Black Guts Shiraz.

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Review: Shiro’s (Seattle, WA)

Posted by johngl

I’ve been spending what seems to be a lot of time in Seattle lately and I am really sorry I hadn’t paid a visit to Shiro’s a long time ago.  Lucky for me, friend and coworker, Yong Taek, lives in the Belltown area and rounded up a gaggle of us Austinites and forced us to walk from 5th and Pike to 2nd and Battery.

It was well worth the trek as this little nondescript shop serves up some of the best sushi available anywhere.

Shiro's, at the corner of 2nd Ave and Battery in Belltown

Stupidly, I didn’t have a camera with me, so the following photos are courtesy of fellow Austinite, Janna, who snapped a couple with her iPhone.

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Review: Haiku Japanese Restaurant (Austin, TX)

Posted by johngl

Having just pulled a stint as an “esteemed judge” for a Haiku contest on Cookie Madness, the word haiku has been on my mind a lot lately.  Consequently, I determined another visit to Austin’s Haiku Japanese Restaurant (first reviewed in August, 2008) was warranted.

Haiku is located in SouthPark Meadows and is a welcome addition for us South Austin Sushi Lovers (we should form a club!)

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