I know I just posted a blog yesterday but I can’t go a day without writing about this.
Demi, Edison, Ryan, and I went to try a sushi place called Takara Sushi. You can’t always have cheap conveyor belt sush, right? You should always try new things, right? WELL…
We walk into a very traditional-looking place. The walls have rice paper, the tables are low, you remove your shoes and sit on a cushion, large tea kettles in the center of the room, and not one English-speaking person. There is a bar where people sit, and behind it are a few chefs with an enormous tank behind them with all kinds of sea life. “Wow, this sushi is going to be so fresh,” I think to myself.
This place was so cool looking. It is what I expected every restaurant in Japan to look like. Not all of them are traditional like this one though. I have only been to a handful of restaurants here, but only two have looked like this. I love it. I wanted to take a bunch of pictures but we already looked like serious tourists, so I didn’t. I thought it might be disrespectful. I totally should have taken pictures though. Thankfully, nobody’s things are private, so google provided me with some sweet images that somebody else took of the place. So a few of these photos are not mine, and I will note each one. Nobody needs to sue me.
We took our shoes off, sat down, and noticed there are hangers on the wall to hang our coats. So convenient. A young woman came to our table, kneeled down to our level, and asked us what we want to drink. I said green tea, for myself, but she took that as everyone wanting it, so she quickly left. We looked at the somewhat ambiguous menus that were difficult to read. And no pictures for the dumb foreigners to point at when ordering. We wanted to know how many pieces of fish the plates came with, but we could not communicate, so Demi whipped out her phone and good old Google translate helped us out. We pointed to a section called Takara, and asked her how many pieces. She was confused. Now I know why. Ed and Demi ordered an assortment of sushi, I got some sushi roll, and Ryan ordered the Takara dish.
Shortly after we order, our server brings us each a small cup with water and live little fish in it. They are baby minnows. The woman points to the soy sauce and gestures us to pour it in the cup and shoot it back in our mouths. It takes a moment for us to comprehend this. These little guys are just for ambiance, right? No, they want us to ingest these squirmy things. I have four in my cup, Demi and Ryan have maybe three, and Ed has six! The moment I only partially consider doing this, my heart begins to pound. Demi’s going to do it! She puts the soy sauce in the cup and the minnows squirm rapidly–they do not like that. We all decide we are not doing it and would like to take them home, instead. We don’t take them home. We leave them there to die, like the cruel people we are. At least we aren’t savages, eating live things. We wonder if this is a joke and they gave us this to perhaps see the stupid Americans swallow live fish. I feel so uneasy.
I wanted to see a Japanese person do it, and then maybe I would have actually considered doing it. Dan would have totally done it if he were there. Monster.
We somewhat get over this disturbing idea. The woman brings out a plate of super fresh wasabi. Cool!
NOW the woman brings out a bowl of shrimp and puts it in the center of the table. They’re moving. Why are they moving? Did they just die and this is some sort of nerve reflex? Nope, they’re alive. They gave us a bowl of live shrimp to eat. We have no idea what to do with this. I feel shocked. I’m actually shaking a little. I never knew something like this would freak me out so much. I look around the restaurant to see if anyone else is eating the shrimp, and how. There is a petite woman laughing in a corner with a moving shrimp in her hand. The movement of them is startling! Then she just rips its head off and eats the insides like it’s no thang. Does this place just give every table these live things as like, a courtesy or something? Is this just part of the place?
We realize what is happening. Takara sushi. Ryan ordered the Takara. What is this place called in English? Fear factor sushi. WE ACCIDENTALLY WENT TO FEAR FACTOR SUSHI.
Fear factor sushi is like, a known thing. We were not expecting this at all. The dead food was good, except my sushi had a ton of bones in them and I could feel the ones I didn’t pick out, scrape down my throat. I felt sick. It was not pleasant. This had not been a pleasant experience at all. But, this was an experience, nonetheless.
We paid and got the eff out of there.
We will not be returning.