How to Impress Your Date at Blowfish Sushi to Die for
A quick way to impress your date at Blowfish Sushi to Die for in San Francisco’s hip Mission neighborhood is to order a sashimi combination.
From what I glimpsed at other people’s tables, the dish is served in a deep ceramic pot filled with smoking dry ice and decorated with an ikebana of twigs and orchids.
Since my dining companion and I were rather old daters, we went for a less-festive yet still pleasing display of choice nigiri – hamachi toro (yellowtail belly), saba (mackerel), walu (Hawaiian escolar), and my favorite uni (sea urchin) – fresh and satisfying, and also sporting a purple orchid for added color effect.
That was impressive, especially after Blowfish Sushi special cocktails. My husband ordered X-rated martini (hoping for what, I wonder?) made of sake, blood orange, and passion-fruit liqueur, with a sweet-and-sour refreshing flavor.
I tried a lychee Collins of Tanqueray gin, lemon, sugar, bitters, and a whole lychee fruit – not your grandma’s Collins, indeed.
Ritsu roll is one of the unique appetizers, only found at the Blowfish Sushi. Invented and named after the Tokyo-born Executive Chef Ritsuo Tsuchida, it comes on a plate with a martini glass at its center, filled with citrus ponzu sauce and decorated with lime and lemon wheels.
Roll slices of two types of tuna, a bit of avocado, and a tad of masago roe, wrapped in thin tempura, are placed around the martini glass to look like precious jewels, surrounded by Dijon aioli doodles on the edge of the plate.
We consumed the Ritsu roll in no time, and picked a pair of Hawaiian brochettes from Kozara (small plate) menu. Grilled steak cubes were marinated in soy, ginger, and sesame, and skewered with tiny pineapple and white onion slices.
Served on a miniature grill, the perfectly cooked meat was enhanced with soy-based garlicky sauce.
For a main course, we ordered a couple of “Blowfish creation” rolls out of the extensive menu of house specials. The two looked spectacular together.
Toshi Koshi roll, with a prevailing green color scheme, contained crab and spicy tuna on the inside, and albacore and avocado on the outside, topped with green tobiko. The Greedy Girl roll (did I order that?) was filled with salmon, tuna, cucumber, and radicchio, wrapped in pink-colored soy paper, and topped with ginger garlic honey tartar sauce and orange tobiko.
Both were as delicious as they were a pleasure to behold.
All the impressive edibles at Blowfish Sushi come from a well-appointed open kitchen that looks like a part of the restaurant’s ongoing art installation.
The next dish to hit our table was a vegetarian “simple plate” of kamonnasu (sautéed Japanese eggplant and zucchini grilled with a sesame red miso sauce).
The presentation of the simple plate was rather sophisticated, with zucchini slices forming a star, filled with sauced-up eggplant, and decorated with an orchid.
Finally, when it seemed nothing could impress us any more, a dessert plate arrived – another artful presentation of delicate ingredients in all shades of green.
Called Zen Garden, this heavenly dessert contained melt-in-your-mouth green tea cheesecake topped with green tea ice cream on a plate dusted with matcha green tea.
Blowfish Sushi to Die for is located at 2170 Bryant Street in San Francisco. The restaurant is open for lunch Monday-Friday, and dinner nightly. For more information or reservations, call (415) 285-3848 or visit their website.