Morimoto Napa: sushi samurai sellout

Chef Masaharu , as many of you old school foodies may recall, gained a cult following during the 90′s on the Japanese cooking show Iron Chef. Notoriety birthed a slew of boutique , including his namesake chain Morimoto Restaurant.

Having been a huge fan of Iron Chef (Japanese not IC America) I have always wanted to dine at one of his restaurants. It was sheer chance I happened to be in suffering a wicked craving when Open Table alerted me to the existence of Morimoto Napa.

I was giddy with excitement – no spider sense tingles alerting me to the absolute mediocrity that awaited. I will qualify that statement by saying I am a bit of a sushi snob, but it wasn’t just that the was bland, it was poorly prepared (knife skills of a hack), service sucked and the price…all I can say is ffff…… that!

 

I could write 500 words about how bad it was; tell you about the quarter-inch cut slices of octopus carpaccio that had the flavor and bite profile of a broiled condom, or about the Toro that I swear was Sea Bass or Halibut, or the Ikura that was clearly rinsed so as to kill the salmon egg ‘fishiness’ (the very quality that people like me about it), or about the overcooked rice that tasted like something scavenged from the country buffet down the street…but, none of that is what really pissed me off…The real insult here is that fanboys/girls of Morimoto (like myself) loved him for his passion, his purity, his risky culinary masterpieces that made him a chef samurai.

This experience was a bit like finding out Santa is just a fabrications of the marketing industry, built to sell toys.

If you really want to try a sellout, sushi chain, I recommend Benihana over Morimoto’s; half the price and, at least, you know what you’re you’re in for: a flaming onion volcano, over-sauced rolls smothered in crunchy bits from the deep fryer, a scalding hot craft of the shittiest Sake they could find and of course – this suburban delight could not be complete without – bananas tempura.

Morimoto Napa – terrible

Morimoto Napa – terrible

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