Sunday, September 21, 2008


On Hennepin Avenue, Musashi sits in yet another stately brick building, waiting for the next lunch or dinner rush to occur. During all three of my visits I either went right before or after the mad lunch crowd, thereby ensuring I get all the service to myself. This Japanese restaurant makes the best shiitake mushroom roll I have ever eaten in my life. The fungi are sweet, as if marinated in vinegar and sugar, and the sweetness is highly addictive. This roll can be ordered individually for only $4.50, or in a lunch combo with two other basic rolls (such as spicy tuna or shrimp tempura) for only $12.95.

But no visit can be complete unless a specialty roll is ordered (i.e., a unique creation that is not a generic roll found in other restaurants), and that was why I returned for the pure indulgence of the pricey “Sunami Roll” (perhaps it’s “Tsunami” misspelled). The menu described the roll as having king crab, avocado, spicy mayo, and red tobiko on top, but mentioned nothing of the giant scallops they put on top of the roll upon which the flying fish eggs are heaped (pleasant surprise!). Even more eye-pleasing: the tobiko come in a vast spectrum of colors, mostly due to the marination with fruit juices or wasabi, according to the chef. The roll costs $17.95, but you can find a 10% off coupon for the restaurant in City Pages (Minneapolis’ version of L.A. Weekly).

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