Gillian Ferguson, Julian Ferguson, Evan discussed on Good Food



You're listening to good food on KCRW. I'm Evan Kleiman. Sushi in the hands of more a hero on Madeira is something that Angelenos have treasured for four decades. His new place. Morihiro is in the low key neighborhood of out water. A lucky surprise for that neighborhood. I must say, l a Times restaurant critic Bill Addison pulled up a seat there at the sushi bar. Hi, Bill. Hi, Evan. We're going for really good sushi in out Water village. How did Maury find himself in that neighborhood here? Got a good deal on this place basically and opened in the Dark days of the pandemic or one cycle of dark days in the pandemic in November, right when things were shutting down around the holidays, So he started by, uh, floating the business the way so many sushi bars did. Making beautiful bentos with elaborate small, exquisite bites or Sarah. She he did his little differently trashes the dish of race and fish kind of usually scattered over the rice. But Mori treasures the rice so much he kind of put it in a And a lump on the side so you can just taste the rice separately and kind of flying the fish up next to it. It was a pleasure to finally be able to sit in the restaurant. It's seven tables. And there are six seats at the sushi bar. And, um, you know, there's a lot of sushi in Los Angeles, and there are many ways to experience it at many price points. This isn't an expensive and he offers it at a lot of levels. You consider the table and have a four course meal with six or 10 sushi pieces and some small appetizers, pickles and such, and soup in a small dessert for around $100. But the sushi fanatics keep him busy. His omakase stays at the table and at the sushi bar are quite a bit more. We're talking 250 to $350 per person. I think it's a testament to how much the city loves Maury that his restaurant is quite booked. Can you take us through the, um through the experience of eating one of the omakase A menus Tell us some of the highlights for you. Absolutely. He starts diners off with homemade tofu, so sweet and custody and really nothing like the worst examples of tofu that that we all can conjure. Very simple with a bit of freshly grated with subi and some soy sauce. It just kind of settles you right into what's coming. He'll make a beautiful plate called the Sons. I played again. Kind of pulled from Kosecki tradition. They will have a lot of different small tastes with a lot of different textures and different preparations. So, uh, it might be marinated salmon roe that pops in the mouth and slices of abalone with you. Zuko shoe, the the condiment that that includes chili for kind of about Peppery blast. It was summertime. So he had, uh, a beautiful sliver of baby corn, Fresh baby corn, not like the stuff off of salad buffet. Some of us may remember from the seventies and a beautiful delay of salt cured cherry blossoms just really unusual. Um, but beautiful. Kind of again scene setting tastes. He'll have other small dishes, sashimi of Hokkaido scallop, my mound of bigeye tuna tartare, very luxurious with a heap of caviar. On top of it. He used his bigeye tuna, not blue fan. He's he's aware of the environmental concerns as All sushi chefs should be, I think, And soon after that, the procession of nigiri begins. Sounds just so fabulous. Um, Rice is such an integral part of the experience, and he has such a personal relationship with Rice. Um, I know for a while he had invested in a rice farm in Uruguay. Where is he getting his rice from? Now He's gone back to Japan, too. His race right now he is using a Rice from the Ibaraki Prefecture, a kosher curry rice, very subtle and sweet and short, green and it you know, immediately when I put pictures of his sushi on Instagram, people were like Yep, That's the Mori style. It sticks together. But it's not clumpy or gluey. They talk about the perfect temperature for rice being body temperature, and his is almost if you put your hand on the top of your chest, it's that kind of warmth, and it tastes just so good with the cool seafood that he's cut right there. Some of it marinated some of it not. He's never shy with the freshly grated with subi and so it often has, like a real smack that comes through. But there's nothing like that communion. That presence of being with someone who has such a presence like Maury does. And it's funny when I was the national critic for either for almost five years. Every time I came to Los Angeles, I was asking myself what sushi restaurant might be appropriate to put on this short, always very stressful list of the 38 essential restaurants in America that I was tasked. Too, right? And I could never come up with the answer. We have so much great sushi in this town, but at that time on a deer a did not have a restaurant. And when I Finished my meals for this review. The last night. I walked out after being at his sushi bar. I thought this is it. This is the one that if it had been open during that time, I would have put it on the list of 38 essential restaurants in America because it's It's not just how beautiful the sushi tastes. You can get that at a handful of other amazing places here. Sushi that has not just the beautiful contrast between the rice and the fish. But also interesting fish fish that has real flavor and real providence and seasonality. But it's also that Maury understands Los Angeles he he's tuned his meals in a way that I think speak to our palette and his presence. His warmth is something that makes him different from any other. Sushi chef in Los Angeles. Well, thank you very much for assuring that, um many of us will not be able to get in for months to come. Sorry about that persevere. It's worth it. I only got in our cancellation myself. So I got it. Thank you so much, Bill. Thank you, Evan. Bill Anderson is the restaurant critic. For the Times We've been talking about revered sushi Chef more a hero on Madeira's latest act more hero. And now it's that time when we had all the way West to the Santa Monica Farmers market, where our correspondent Gillian Ferguson joins us with the latest on what chefs are shopping for this week in Southern California. This is Julian Ferguson with the market report. It's starting to feel like the last weeks of summer here at the market. The fruit comes and goes so quickly this time of year and I'm happy to be talking with part in today. The chef behind the Cambodian inspired pop up Kim lot who is here buying the late season. Valencia Pride mangoes from.

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