I love bacon. That’s definitely one food item that America does best. No matter how great Japanese, French or Italian cuisines are, no other country can offer a better piece of cured meat than America. That pride and joy has led to a bacon craze. Bacon mac n’ cheese, chocolate covered bacon, even bacon cocktail and bacon chapstick. Some are good, some are… not so much.
Then I ate a tuna BLT roll at Hollywood’s Blue C Sushi– a classic sandwich favorite turned into sushi. Bacon, lettuce, tomato and avocado wrapped with seaweed and rice, then topped with seared tuna and bacon jam. Sushi and bacon… It can be the greatest thing, or a total disaster. Which was this? It was absolutely delicious. When you dip it in soy sauce a little (Do NOT over dip! That’s a sushi 101), the sweetness of the bacon jam along with the saltiness, is the best ‘east meets west’ creation since Hello Kitty Give Away nights at Dodger Stadium. (Not a good example, but hey, they are popular.) The crispy bacon, tuna, rice with creamy avocado combination makes it fun to eat as well.
America puts its virtue on freedom and being creative. Japan is a country of tradition and rules. That’s why Jiro only dreams of sushi, while American chefs can create sushi with bacon jam. Being Japanese but living in America, I go back and forth between the two cultures as I love traditional sushi as well as the creative and unique version. You can’t compare those two and judge which is better. Both serve different purposes. Blue C Sushi, a Seattle based revolving sushi restaurant, makes good creative sushi. The interior is bright, pop, and futuristic as you’d imagine Tokyo to be, with a big subway motif on the middle of the wall. All plates are named for Tokyo’s subway lines. For example, Salmon is on a light blue plate, which is the color code for the Tozai Line, and goes for $4.75; California rolls are on the orange Ginza Line, all priced at $3.50. Yes, revolving sushi virgins, plates are all color coded and priced accordingly which makes it easy to see how many plates you’ve eaten as well as how much money you’ve spent. As an example of pure American freedom of choice, alongside rainbow rolls and octopus, you’ll also see brownies, cookies and cupcakes. Why not? (I also overheard there’s a secret dessert… Fried brownie!)
Creativity doesn’t stop at bacon. Take for example, Hama Chili, fresh, melt in the mouth yellowtail with citrus soy chili, and serrano chili and cilantro on top. Also shigoku oyster with pungent fish sauce mignonette. Shigoku oyster is known for its round, plump and firm flesh and a deep cup. Ocean tides tumble them a few times a day results in that special texture. For a non fish eater, there’s potato katsu on the menu. That’s a Japanese answer to tater tots, deep fried panko breaded potato comes with tonkatsu sauce. It’s not really Japanese, but who cares, it’s fun! That’s probably the best word to describe eating at Blue C Sushi, fun… and delicious.